Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Blasts From the Past for Multicultural Children's Book Day

Greetings, reader guys. Today is a big day for all those who love reading, although the Iron Guy is embarrassed to say that it sneaked up on him. In fact, I wouldn't have known about if I hadn't seen it on our good friend Ms. Yingling's blog. (check it out, guys--there are always good recommendations there!) Anyway, my mom always said that it takes all kinds to make a world and she was absolutely right. It's important to read and learn about how people live, both here and around the world because we live in a big multicultural and interconnected world. Besides, it's interesting and a whole lot of fun!

Now, since this event sneaked up on me, I didn't have time to read a new book for it. But, not only is the Iron Guy a MANLY MAN, he's resourceful too! Every once in a while I will link you to a review of something I've read before. I call these Blasts From the Past. They are really good reads and the library system still has copies. So, since I didn't read a new book for this event, I'll show you some old ones. Go find them, guys, because they are really good!
The first one is the first book I ever reviewed for this blog, Call It Courage by Armstrong Sperry. It's a true oldie but goodie! It won the Newbery Award as best kid's book way back in 1941 but it's still so exciting it will make you grip your chair! Taking place in the South Pacific, you have fights with hammerhead sharks and chases by cannibals. If you haven't read this (and I bet you haven't), you're in for a treat. Check out my original review here.

The second recommendation is actually a series by a terrific author, Alexander McCall Smith. He wrote the Akimbo books about a boy on a
nature preserve in Africa. Not only are the stories good but you also really get the feeling of the African countryside. Take a look at my original review here.

All of these books are short but exciting. They're perfect if you're a long-time reader or if you don't think you like books. (what the grownups call a "reluctant reader") Especially the first book. I defy you to sit down with Call It Courage and not read it straight through without stopping. Come on, I defy you!!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

A 2016 New Year's Treat--a Review from Reid!

Hey, everybody, this is Iron Guy Carl and I'm happy to say that you boys are rocking the New Year! We got a book review from Graham at the end of 2015 and now we've got a new one for 2016. It's from Reid and I believe it's his first review for our blog. He going to tell us about Long Shot: A Comeback Kids Novel. Let's hear what Reid has to say:

 Comeback Kids By Mike Lupica. A review by Reid Wilson

Pedro and Ned are good friends. Ned and Pedro run against each other for class president. Ned does not like the competition. Ned does all sorts of things in basketball to make Pedro look bad. For example once Ned threw a bad pass to Pedro on purpose to make everybody think he could not catch. Ned is showing the fact that he does not like Pedro. Pedro fights back and scores the winning basket. He is everybody's friend now. I like the book because it inspires me to fight back in tough times. You should read it too!!!

Thanks, Reid! This sounds really good. I know that a lot of boys and grownups enjoy Mike Lupica's books but the Iron Guy is sad to say that he has never read one. Maybe that should change in the New Year. Anyway, I'm extremely glad to hear not only that you liked it but also that you learned a good life lesson from it. That's what I keep telling you, guys--reading is both fun and useful. And this review isn't coming from some boring old grownup--it's from a boy just like you! Which means that Long Shot is--


Reid, don't forget that the first time a boy sends in a review, he gets a free book from our ultra-cool prize box. Come on down to the Myers Park library and we'll open it up for you!

And has anyone else out there read this book? Or any others from the Comeback Kids series? Or any others by Mike Lupica? Go to the Comment section under this post and let us know!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Star Wars--The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary

Greetings of the New Year, guys! Hope that 2016 turns out to good and prosperous for all of you. I started the year right by going to see the new Star Wars movie. Wow! Was it great? You bet it was! I won't talk about the movie right now because I could go on all day but I will tell about a really cool Star Wars book.

It's Star Wars The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary and, man, is it ever great! Lots of very cool photos of the characters, equipment, droids, weapons, starships, etc. with information about each of them. Want to know what happened between The Return of the Jedi and this movie? It's in here! Want to know about the starship graveyard on Jakku? Kylo Ren's lightsaber? Rey's speeder? Want to learn more about TIE and Resistance pilots? It's all here--and a whole lot more!

Anyone who has read these Star Wars Visual Dictionaries know that they are amazing. This is no exception! Fun and fascinating, this book will keep the old-time Star Wars fan or the first-time-I've-ever-seen-a-Star-Wars-movie fan entertained and engrossed. And it's the perfect book to hand to an experienced reader or to what the grownups call a "reluctant reader."

Now, the big question is--should I read the book first or see the movie first? Well, this book doesn't contain any spoilers but I think I got a lot more out of it by seeing the movie first. And it's probably a moot point by now because I'm sure that every boy in the United States has already seen it at least once. (if you haven't--what are you waiting for?? Go see it and then check out this book!) Tell me what you thought of the movie. Did you like it a lot? A little? Did you find, as I did, that it really kept to the spirit and look of the original three movies? (Episodes IV--VI?) And have you checked out this book? And is it truly great or what? Leave a comment and let us know!

Update--today, Monday, January 11, is  Nonfiction Monday. Click here to learn about other cool nonfiction books.