Spotlight + Giveaway: Rice & Rocks


Rice & Rocks by Sandra L. Richards

Tradition takes flight in Rice & Rocks, a picture book celebrating culture and diversity.

Giovanni’s friends are coming over for Sunday dinner, and his grandmother is serving rice and beans. Giovanni is embarrassed—he does not like “rice and rocks” and worries his friends will think the traditional Jamaican dish is weird. But his favorite Auntie comes to the rescue. She and Giovanni’s pet parrot, Jasper, take him on a magical journey across the globe, visiting places where people eat rice and rocks. This exciting story celebrates the varied traditions of every culture while also highlighting the delicious similarities that bring us all together.


Praise for Rice & Rocks

“I feel as if Rice & Rocks was written for the 7 year old me stuck in a foreign country. I wish I could have read it when I was a kid since it would have really helped me to feel a lot more comfortable with my roots, my traditions, in a foreign place with people of other colors & customs.”
– Melissa Robles, The Reader and the Chef

“Rice & Rocks is a beautifully illustrated, culturally diverse children’s book centered around my favorite topic…food!…Parents will enjoy reading it with/to their little ones because the illustrations compliment the story perfectly. This book will also work as a good conversation starter for acceptance of self and others for school age children.”
– D.S. White, Divine Perspective


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sandra-smallAuthor Sandra L. Richards

Sandra L. Richards is the debut picture book author of Rice & Rocks. With Rice & Rocks, Sandra brings a unique contribution to the world of children’s books. An American-born daughter of Jamaican immigrant parents, she hopes the book will serve as an educational resource for families seeking to teach their children the value of their heritage and the importance of cultural diversity.

Website * Twitter * Facebook


Blog Tour Giveaway: $50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash! Ends 10/28/16.

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Click HERE to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway. Good luck!

Spotlight + Giveaway: OMG… I Did It Again? by Talia Aikens-Nuñez

OMG… I Did It Again?

April Appleton wakes up to quite the sight: a herd of elephants marching down her street! She realizes that her powers of witchcraft have done it again. With her friends, Grace and Eve, April must figure out how the elephants got to her town in the first place and then how to get them back home. But with elephants playing in the neighbor’s pool, sitting on cars and eating everyone’s trees, how will they do it? Early readers will delight in the misadventures of this reluctant witch and her plucky friends as they try to figure out how to use April’s powers to do good in the world.

Available on Amazon.

taliaAuthor Talia Aikens-Nuñez
Talia Aikens-Nuñez wanted to be a meteorologist, a politician and a lawyer. She never thought she would be a writer. It was the birth of her daughter that caused her to start writing. Raising a bilingual child inspired Talia to write lyrical children’s books. Talia’s family loves nature so much that she and her husband vowed that they will always try to live close to water. They live on a river in Connecticut with their kids.

Website * Twitter * Facebook


Blog Tour Giveaway: $25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash! Ends 10/31/16

$25 Blog Tour giveaway

Click HERE to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Bossy Flossy Blog Tour + Giveaway


Title: Bossy Flossy | Author: Paulette Bogan | Publication Date: July 19, 2016 Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. | ISBN: 978-1627793582

Book Description: Flossy is the bossiest girl around. She’s bossy at home and she’s bossy in school. She’s bossy to her friends and she’s bossy to her cat. Sometimes she’s even bossy to her teacher! Flossy doesn’t understand why no one will listen to her. One day, Flossy meets Edward, a boy who may be just as bossy as she is. Has Flossy finally met her match?


My thoughts: Everyone has met Flossy. Or is Flossy! Come on, you know who you are. Flossy is definitely bossy. She even bosses around her toys. Though you may be charmed by her crazy, curly hair and that bright, I-know-what-I’m-doing look in her eye, eventually you will tire of doing everything Flossy’s way. But Flossy has never experienced this so-called bossy fatigue, not until another little boss, Edward, shows up. As Flossy and Edward become instant frenemies, they recognize the bossiness in each other. And in what I think is a clever, no-easy-solution ending, these two children don’t find a magic answer. They are who they are and they work it out between themselves. So refreshing! Shout out to the bold, colorful illustrations that work perfectly with the story by author-illustrator, Paulette Bogan.

Available on Amazon ~ Barnes and Noble ~ Book Depository ~ Chapters Indigo

paulette-boganAuthor’s Bio: Paulette Bogan admits she was bossy as a child. She is the author and illustrator of Virgil & Owen, which was chosen as one of Bank Street Best Children’s books of the Year 2016, Virgil & Owen Stick Together, which won a Mom’s Choice Award Gold Medal for Picture Books, and Lulu The Big Little Chick, which won a Children’s Choice Book Award. She lives in New York City with her husband, three daughters, and two dogs. They ALL think she is STILL bossy. But they’ve never told her to go to her room!

Connect with the author: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook

Giveaway: Win a prize package of THREE children’s books by Paulette Bogan: Bossy Flossy, Virgil & Owen, and Virgil & Owen Stick Together plus a $20 Amazon Gift Card (Open to USA & Can). Not one but TWO winners will be chosen. Hurry, the giveaway ends Oct 8th!

Click HERE to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!

Disclosure: I received a free copy of Bossy Flossy in exchange for an honest review.


The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt Blog Tour + Giveaway

After recently returning from a rain-filled day at Hong Kong Disneyland — which was, of course, magical despite the weather — I can already see my next Disney adventure at California’s Disneyland with this handy guide in tow. What a brilliant idea to lead visitors through a somewhat overwhelming array of activities by coordinating a scavenger hunt.

The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt

Book Description: See the enchantment of the Disneyland resort in a whole new way with “The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt.” From Main Street U.S.A. to New Orleans Square, Walt Disney lovingly designed every detail to immerse guests in the magic of his theme parks. If this is your first visit or your five hundredth, you will discover something new with “The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt.”

See Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure through new eyes when you discover fantasy, thrills, and dreams around every turn. Whether you’re perusing the shops, waiting in line, or riding attractions, there’s plenty to uncover for even the most knowledgeable Disney fan.

Buy the Book:  Amazon  ~  Books-a-Million  ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Powell’s Books  ~

Catherine F. Olen

Author’s Bio: Catherine Olen has enjoyed a love affair with the magic of the Disney theme parks for as long as she can remember, counting herself among Disneyland passholders for the last twenty-five years. Previously, Olen owned and operated Hollywood Grave Hunter and is the proud author of The Final Curtain: Celebrity Deaths and The Upside of Undertaking, chronicling her previous career experiences. She has been a correspondent to Entertainment Tonight (US and France), The Biography Channel, Reelz Network, and the Mark & Brian radio show.

Connect with the author:  Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Pinterest  ~  Instagram

WIN a Disney Prize Pack with a print copy of The Great Disneyland Scavenger Hunt, a “Mickey” or “Minnie” Disney plush toy and a $10 Disney gift card (10 winners total, open to USA & Canada). Ends July 30!

CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!

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World Book Review: The Croc and the Platypus


This delightful, rhyming picture book follows two unlikely Aussie friends on an impromptu journey to the red center. Along the way, they play an indigenous instrument (didgeridoo), eat local sweets (lamingtons) and meet a new mate (Australian for “friend”). Finally, the duo set up camp under the famed Southern Cross enjoying the night alongside a wonderous red rock.

A joyous tale in perfect rhyme, The Croc and the Platypus is a fun read-aloud story that includes an incredible number of Australian icons. The stunning artwork beautifully compliments the simple story as it introduces young readers to the wonders of the Australian outback.

Recommended, especially for anyone who wants to introduce young children to Australia.

The Croc and the Platypus
Written by Jackie Hosking
Illustrated by Majorie Crosby-Fairall
ISBN: 9781922077-60-8
Available at Boomerang Books

Help create a school library for kids that don’t have one

Reposted from Z is for Zambetti Blog. Great timing for Children’s Book Week!

Help! PS191 in NYC needs a library

Today I found out that my school is lending a helping hand to a neighboring school by hosting a book drive to help create a school library. How great is that?

So, in the interests of spring cleaning, my local friends – not-so-local friends can help out, too – won’t you give a book to a school?

Without further ado, from MV4NY and the amazing PS166 PTA:

Spring Break is a great time for cleaning out your book case

From May 9th-20th, the PS 166 PTA has organized a Book Drive to benefit PS 191 — an under-funded public school on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. The school enrolls students in Pre-K through Grade 8, and has very limited resources from within the school community.  For this reason, the school has existed without a library and learning center for years.  As a Title 1 school, the large majority of students at PS 191 come from low-income homes, and 50% + of the kids qualify for free lunch.  What’s remarkable is that this is the case for hundreds of kids living just blocks away from us.

So, today, let’s build a library together and give the children of the school access to books that will help them at school, and beyond.  Please know that you will be bringing a great gift to a local school.


I’m going to be donating the pile of wonderful donated duplicates I’ve been hoarding in my library supply closet (and a few of my own beloved books, too). Because PS166 already *has* a library. PS191 deserves one, too.

Actually, ALL schools do. But you meet big goals by taking one step at a time. Think global, act local, right?:-)

Won’t you lend a hand with me?

Source: Help! PS191 in NYC needs a library

You can also send donations directly to the school at this address:

Damaris Carrion, Parent Coordinator at PS 191 – Museum Magnet School
210 West 61st Street
New York, NY, 10023

I’ll be donating a pack of books and thought I’d share this opportunity to spread the love of books to children in need.

Warm wishes,

Children’s Book Week Giveaway Hop

I have a copy of The Foot Book by Dr. Suess that my mother read to me when I was four years old. Now I’m reading it to my own four year old. And, hopefully, he’ll read it to his child someday. That’s the magic of children’s books — they hold memories and feelings inside their covers for decades.

So I couldn’t pass up the chance to participate in the Children’s Book Week Giveaway Hop. My giveaway includes three children’s books about adventures, a topic that fascinated me throughout my childhood.

Obookne signed, paperback copy of Barney and Barry The Hitchhikers (chapter book) by Sharon Powers. In this clever book aimed a kids aged 7-10, two bickering barnacles, Barney and Barry, attach onto an unsuspecting sea turtle named Fletcher. The adventure takes the trio on a journey through the sea with a cast of memorable characters as Fletcher learns hope to cope with two uninvited hitchhikers.

WallyBoardBookCoverFINALOne signed, paperback copy of Wally the Warm-Weather Penguin (picture book) by Stephanie M. Ward (me!).  The rhyming tale of a penguin who doesn’t like the cold and leaves his home in Antarctica in search of warm weather. But when he arrives in the Galapagos Islands he discovers an amazing world filled with tap-dancing crabs, diving birds with bright blue feet and racing 100-year-old tortoises.

ThreeOne signed, hardcover copy of Three Little Shrimp (picture book) by J. Steven Spires. The charming tale of three shrimp who get separated from their troupe (yes, that’s what a group of shrimp are called) and narrowly avoid danger at every turn.


And it’s all packed up in a “Say Yes to New Adventures” Canvas Tote Bag with some fun extras including postcards and a bookmark!

Wally Giveaway


CLICK HERE to enter the giveaway via Rafflecopter! (U.S. residents only this time.) Ends May 9th at midnight.

Thanks to Wishful Endings for hosting this giveaway. Pop over and visit their great blog and then hop to the 20+ bloggers participating with their own Children’s Week giveaways.

Thanks for visiting and GOOD LUCK!

Warm Wishes,

1. Wishful Endings (INT)

* 8. Writer with Wanderlust (US) * You are here🙂