Me and my girl and boy, raising awareness and acceptance of autism

Archive for the ‘Bookworm Wednesday’ Category

We love “Tiny Twisted Tales” from Calvin Innes

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We like books a lot in the Bluecrisps household, to pick up a book and from the first few lines to be transported away to a world in the author’s imagination is wonderful.

Books can relax you, excite you, make you laugh or cry or wonder at the imagery presented.

What we all enjoy are humorous little stories, T and D have their favourites and with the age they are now, the more “burps” and mild “toilet humour” mentioned the better. T will collapse in a fit of giggles if he sees certainly funny little words when he’s reading, it’s great to see.

We were really pleased to be sent three titles in The Tiny Twisted Tales range to have a read through and we throughly enjoyed them!

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Here’s some information on the books and their author/illustrator Calvin Innes (from the website):

The Tiny Twisted Tales are a collection of short stories and poems from the rather strange mind of Calvin Innes.. Each Tiny Twisted Tale is about another weird, scary, wonderfully gruesome character, from people who eat bugs, to tiny toga-wearing goblins. Each book is packed with dozens of Calvin’s quirky illustrations.

Tiny Twisted Tales books are available from most major bookstores (including Waterstones) as well as on-line bookstores like Amazon (Kindle Version also Available) and WHSmith.com as well as the My Little Big Town store.

RRP £4.99 per title.

What did we think of the books?

As a mum, I found the books very appealing. The books are described as “spooky, scary, strange, disgustingly wonderful and wonderfully macabre” on the back cover and they are certainly that!

The books each contain one story, in rhymes with wonderfully detailed illustrations. There is some quite cartoony gruesome imagery but it’s appropriate to the story and it didn’t manifest in any terrors. Each story has a nice morale and conclusion to it too.

The books we were sent told of a man who ate bugs, a werewolf-hunting little girl and a boy who didn’t like to go out.

I enjoy writing a piece of poetry every week for a linky so I was interested in how the author could make whole series from rhymes.

And T thought they were cool and made him laugh too! Great praise from a 10 year old who likes to read and read!

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Thank you, My Little Big Town for introducing us to a new author.

Disclaimer: we were sent three books, RRP £4.99 each for the purpose of this review. Our words and views were our own.

Back to “our” normal and @Aspiewriter book review Weds 15th May 2013

Sometimes I describe living with autism as being “unpredictably predictable” and it certainly is!

After yesterday’s out-of-routine noisy, busy evening, I wasn’t sure how or even whether D would sleep, but she did sleep, far better than the previous four nights.

After I mentioned the lack of sleep in last night’s blog, a couple of very helpful comments helped me to realise that D’s unsettledness was (probably) due to the changes in the classroom and not related to anything she may have inadvertently viewed, which was a relief.

It seemed to back this theory up as she was back in class yesterday, back into routine and she could see that the class carried on without the child that had left last week. The environment remained positive and it was all ok.

It’s reinforced further to me how much she relies on routine – T is the same – and it’s definitely made me more aware for the future.

And we seem to have our happy D back. The school run this morning was accompanied with Joseph songs and she positively bounced into class.

All fine at pick-up too, she hasn’t chatted that much about her day, apart from to say she’s tired. Settled happily tonight after a bit of arguing with T, they are too alike at times!

T’s had a good day too, he’s still very chuffed about his trophy and slept with it on his pillow last night, it’s remained close by when he’s been sitting down relaxing as well.

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I’m including a Bookworm Wednesday recommendation in tonight’s post, a book I’ve enjoyed reading over the last few weeks.

The author is Jeannie Davide-Rivera, who may be familiar on Twitter as @AspieWriter.

I’ve always found Jeannie’s blog posts very insightful and the book was no exception.

Here’s the Amazon link and some information about the book (from Amazon):

Jeannie grew up with autism, but no one around here knew it. Twirling Naked in the Streets will take you on a journey into the mind of a child on the autism spectrum; a child who grows into an adolescent, an adult, and becomes a wife, mother, student, and writer with autism.

This is a gripping memoir of a quirky, weird, but gifted child who grows up never quite finding her niche only to discover at the age of 38 that all the issues, problems, and weirdness she experienced were because she had Asperger’s Syndrome (AS), a form of high-functioning autism.

The tale begins at age three and takes us all the way through her diagnosis. Along the way she explains autism in a way that will have fellow “Aspies” crying tears of joy at being understood, and “neuro-typical” people really starting to grasp the challenges that autistic people face every moment of every day.

I took a few weeks to read the book as I wanted to digest the information and I found it very enlightening. I have always preferred reading real-life experiences rather than a standard text book about the autistic spectrum far more helpful and the fact I already knew of Jeannie made it all the more interesting.

A recommendation from me and a lot of admiration for the woman, wife and mother she is now, her journey has not been easy at times.

This book will appeal to anyone wanting to know more about the autistic spectrum as well as Jeannie’s experiences of growing up without a diagnosis.

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So, that’s us, comments/RTs/shares as ever welcomed, thanks for reading Jx 😘

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Bookworm Wednesday – “Falling and Laughing: The Restoration of Edwyn Collins” by Grace Maxell

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Today’s “Bookworm Wednesday” is one I first read a few years ago, when my mum had a stroke. I saw the book in HMV and it instantly made me want to buy it and read it. I read it very quickly almost overnight, needing to know that the family would get through their experience.

Although the recovery journeys were different, Edwyn suffered brain haemorrhages and subsequently contracted MRSA, I found an empathy with the fears and worries I was feeling at the time.

The book is written by Edwyn’s wife and manager, Grace Maxwell, and is a very open, honest account of how their lives were turned upside down, the frustrations encountered but the hope that always stayed with them.

I was reminded of this book when Karen (@ManicMippisMum) mentioned he was going to see Edwyn in concert recently and it’s one I’ve recommended Hubbie to read as his mother had a severe stroke recently.

It’s inspiring, very well written and well worth a read. Here’s the Amazon link.

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Bookworm Wednesday – “Big Nate: The Boy with the Biggest Head in the World”

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T has written this week’s Bookworm Wednesday again, I hope he never ever tires of reading, I read a report recently which said that some teenagers are embarrassed to be seen reading, which is such a shame. They’re missing out on so much!

Big Nate: The boy with the biggest head in the world by Lincoln Peirce.

“Big- head Nate Wright truly believes he’s destined for greatness.

When he thinks he has a brutal Social Studies test, Nate tries to find a way out of it. He comes up with several ideas but each one has a down side. And then he comes with an idea to get out of the test, write a fake letter or excuse to get out of the test.

He later realises thanks to his friend, Francis, that he doesn’t have a test.

Later when he comes into school, he finds out that he left his lunch at home. But Teddy chucks him a fortune cookie. Nate opens up the cookie to find an awesome fortune: “Today you will surpass all others”.

Nate comes up with several ways he could surpass all others but none of them work. Suddenly, he starts getting detention from every teacher.

Will Nate’s fortune come true? Or will Nate not get lucky?”

(T’s words with minor cosmetic adjustments)

Thanks for reading, for more information on the Big Nate books and Lincoln Peirce, please click here.

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Bookworm Wednesday – “Let’s Find Mimi” books by Katherine Lodge

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Today’s Bookworm Wednesday books are by Katherine Lodge and are very much along the lines of “Where’s Wally” but for girls. We stumbled across these by accident and they have proved themselves to be very useful in terms of prompting conversation about Mimi and her situations and the many little mice around her.

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Here’s what Amazon says about Mimi and the author:

In this exciting “find the mouse in the house book”, follow Mimi from morning to night as she munches her breakfast, gets dressed in her favourite outfit, bakes a cake, enjoys a lunchtime snack, splashes in the bath and, after a fun-filled day, falls fast asleep!

The challenge is on to find Mimi and her family who are hidden in every scene! Can you spot her?

About the Author
Katherine Lodge is the illustrator of several picture books and she recently created the Sasha and Olly series for Simon and Schuster and the Seriously Cute brand for Bloomsbury. Since becoming the mother of two children herself, Katherine has gained a new insight into the preschooler’s world.

The Let’s Find Mimi books are available from Amazon – click on the link for details.

D and I have really enjoyed looking through the pages, sometimes we’ve found Mimi straight away, other times it’s taken longer, much has depended on how much D has been willing to interact. The quest to find Mimi is made easier by the fact she has a red bow and butterfly wings on, all the other mice are bow-less/wing-less.

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The books also have a game included too, snakes and ladders in one and a shopping game in the other. We haven’t tried these yet – sometimes D will turn-take, it depends on how her day is going – but we will.

A definite thumbs-up from us for the interaction possibilities and conversation tools.

Thanks for reading Jx 😘

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Bookworm Wednesday – No-Bot, the robot with no bottom by Sue Hendra

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Today’s BookWorm Wednesday has been chosen by D. I feel very fortunate that my children enjoy books so much, their idea (I think) of a perfect trip to town is – obviously, not many people around – a few chips in Burger King and a trip to the bookshop to choose some books.

The last time we were in Waterstones, D chose this book. It’s by Sue Hendra – click the link to read more about the author – and it’s very funny and appealing to children of all ages, certainly those who find the word “bottom” funny..and who doesn’t?!

Here’s a summary of the book (from Amazon):
“Bernard the Robot loses his bottom on the park swing, and sets off to find it. Every time he gets close, it disappears again! Bird was using it as a nest, but it was too heavy; Bear used it in his drum kit, but it was too tinny; the Squirrels built sandcastles with it…and now it looks as if they’re sailing away in it. Will Bernard EVER get his bottom back?”

This book had us all giggling away and the illustrations are full of detail too, plenty of opportunity to chat about the contents.

Does Bernard get his bottom back? That would be telling..

Sue Hendra has written some other great children’s books, we have these at home, all recommended.

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BookWorm Wednesday – “Big Nate on a roll” by Lincoln Peirce

T has been very eager to write a Bookworm Wednesday post as he’s discovered a series of books written by Lincoln Peirce and, being the very avid reader that he is, he’s really enjoying them.

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The book is available here from Amazon and I’ve seen the books in Waterstones too. As before, these are T’s views and words, I’ve made cosmetic adjustments only.

“When the announcement in Nate’s scout troop says they are raising money for a camping trip and whoever bags the most cash wins a cool customised skateboard, Nate leaps into action.

Nate’s keen to find out who the newest member of the scout troop is, but when he finds out who it is, he isn’t happy. It’s Artur, aka: Mr Lucky. Artur is a gentle exchange student who’s popular with ALMOST everyone. So now Nate thinks he can’t win the skateboard because Artur is Mr. Lucky.

With Nate struggling to find the most cash, he comes up with an ingenious plan: selling his very own comics. He calls the comics “Nate’s comix crack up”. He tries to find a place to sell and make money.

With Artur already have collected £424, will Nate get the most money to beat Mr Lucky and earn the grand prize? Or will Artur win, AGAIN?!”

I really enjoy sharing T’s reviews, he writes a very good summary and leaves me wanting to read the book.

This is what Amazon says about the book:

“Big Nate is back, starring in the third instalment of his own super-funny series. Big Nate is created by Lincoln Peirce, who inspired Jeff Kinney, author of ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’.

Big Nate’s scout troop is fundraising and while door-to-door selling isn’t really Nate’s thing, there’s nothing like a Grand Prize to get him motivated. Especially when the prize is an awesomely cool customised skateboard (and following an incident with a poodle and a bridge Nate is in need of a new set of wheels). Nate HAS to win the prize but to do that he must out-sell Artur – the luckiest boy at school.

Will Nate beat Artur to the prize (and possibly win over Jenny)?

Or will he just end up in detention?”

For more information on the Big Nate books and Lincoln Peirce, please click here to go to the official website.

Thanks for reading Jx 😘