Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Donna J. Shepherd's Topsy Turvy Land and other book reviews

Donna Shepherd's Topsy Turvy Land is a fun, colorful book about God's creation. It let's kids explore the "what if's" of creation. What if colors were different? What if snakes could sing?

Donna Shepherd utilizes her excellent writing skills to introduce children and their parents to a world of possibilities. In the midst of all of the topsy-turvy, she even had time, with her illustrator Kevin Scott Collier to add "love" to her book - the question is - Can you find all of the hearts?

Donna J. Shepherd is a published children's poet, accomplished writer, and budding theologian in her own right. The imagery is delightful and sure to make children of all ages smile. Donna Shepherd teamed up with one of the best illustrations around, Kevin Collier to create a delightful world of color and rhyme that will make children giggle. With Sixteen pages of whimsy and wonder culminate in the proclamation that God's creation is indeed very good.

Searching the stacks of children's books at libraries and bookstores can be overwhelming for any parent. It is nice to find a book that has a redemptive message for preschoolers. Sure to become a tattered favorite in chubby hands, this book is written with all the skill of Sandra Boynton. I highly recommend this book for children (and adults) of all ages.

This is a fun "book" to review since it is actually two books in one! Guardian Angel Publishing has come out with their Double Doozie line of books and now has a Health & Hygiene Line. In NO MORE GUNK, author Donna Shepherd has written a very humorous yet factual storyline on taking good care of your teeth and how to do so, in rhyming prose. Combined with the awesome and very funny artwork of Kevin Scott Collier, this book is quite the attention-getter for your child and will help you to teach him/her good health habits in a really fun way. I particularly enjoyed the "No More Gunk Tooth Tips" at the end of the story - even the tips rhymed! Good job, Donna! My favorite tip: "They're your teeth, so be the boss. Always take the time to floss." This was like reading a terrific poem full of FUNNY illustrations that your child will want you to read to them over and over and over! This is a keeper and gets a high five, especially when coupled with a SECOND free book!

OUCH! SUNBURN is also a terrific learning experience for your child, and one that hit home hard to me personally. Back in the age of the dinosaur, aka - when I was a small child, we didn't know much about the dangers of the sun and how it damages your skin, and nobody knew what sunscreen was. I grew up by the ocean, so I was either always at the beach, or at our local pool where I swam competitively. I am blonde and fair-skinned, and I had some whopper sunburns as I grew up. So, I can tell you firsthand, that everything Donna says in this book is absolutely positively the truth, and I hope its message really hits home to young readers. The charming rhyming prose Donna uses along with Kevin's fun, colorful illustrations, make this book lots of fun for children to learn how to protect their skin from sunburns. At the end, Donna again gives Ouch! Sunburn Extra Tips, of course, in rhyme. My favorite: "When you're out from ten to two. Play in Shade. Smart Kids do." WHERE WAS THIS BOOK WHEN I WAS GROWING UP? This is a must-have to teach your child safety in the sun at an early age.

This charming picture book story told in rhyming text again teams up author Donna J. Shepherd with Illustrator Kevin Scott Collier. Together, they have created another compelling book for all young readers.

Chizzy the Monkey was just tucked in bed by his mother when Dotty the Hippo calls to him and asks him to hunt for a fruit treat with her. Along the way, Dotty gets them lost in the woods. The meet a lion cub who is scared of them and they are scared that the cub's mother might return. They tell the cub they are lost, and he points them in the right direction. They stop their snack search to help a baby elephant out of the mud. They continue on and find their fruit treat and start eating it when Chizzy worries that his mother will be quite upset when she discovers that he isn't in his bed. Do they make it home in time before Chizzy's mother discovers him missing? You'll just have to read this cute book to find out what happens next!

The superb text by Donna Shepherd and colorful kid-friendly illustrations by Kevin Scott Collier make this book a "must have" for the younger set. It gives young children the message that they should help out their friends and to also be aware that parents worry about them. I give this book a high five for the cute storyline, the perfect rhyming text and the wonderfully colorful and kid-friendly illustrations.

If you read Topsy Turvy Land by the very talented author Donna J. Shepherd, then you won't want to miss the tale of Dotty, one of the fun-loving and colorful characters from Topsy Turvy Land. However, if you haven't read the first book in this wildly imaginative collection of picture books, then you're in for a real delight (well, you're in for a treat even if you have read the collection).

Dotty is a pink hippo who lives in Topsy Turvy Land, and as you might already have guessed, things are not as you might expect in this place. For Dotty, you might think she would feel part of the crowd, but even in her colorful, wild world, she feels like the odd hippo out. After enlisting the help of her best friend, Chizzy, a green monkey who knows how to get into trouble, they set off on an adventure to help Dotty fit in with all the other hippos. Along the way, Dotty and Chizzy realize it doesn't matter how you look. After all, what's wrong with being a pink hippo instead of a purple hippo as long as you're a true friend and have a big heart?

Of course, Donna doesn't disappoint us in this newest tale in the Topsy Turvy Land collection. Because of everything from Donna's smooth rhyme to her wild inventions of the animals living in Topsy Turvy Land, children will want to visit Dotty and her friends again and again. Kevin Scott Collier's artwork is vivid and brings each page to life, adding the right blend of colors to accent the words written by Donna in Dotty's Topsy Tale.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for posting the reviews all in one place like this, Virginia. I appreciate it!



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