Blog Tour: Flower Moon by Gina Linko

Welcome to my stop along the Flower Moon by Gina Linko blog tour! I am so excited to share this fun middle grade novel that has something for everyone. Before we get to my review, let’s take a look at what the book is all about.

32050239Title: Flower Moon
Author: Gina Linko
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Publication Date: January 2, 2018

Summary (from Goodreads): Tempest and Tally Jo Trimble are mirror twins—so alike they were almost born the same person—and they’ve been inseparable since birth. But it’s the summer they turn thirteen, and it seems like everyone can tell something is changing between them.

Pa Charlie, whose traveling carnival is the best part of every summer, is watching them closer than ever. Digger, who sneaks poor kids onto the carnival rides for free and smiles faster than anyone, seems to be fixing for a fight. Even Mama is acting different, refusing to travel with the carnival this year even though her own twin, who she hasn’t seen since childhood, will be there.

And Tally and Tempest are the most different of all. There’s a strangeness between them, a thickness to the air, an unseen push and pull, and it’s getting stronger. It starts as a feeling, but soon it’s sputtering and sparking, hurling them backwards, threatening to explode.

When Tally learns that she and Tempest may not be the first twins in their family to be separated by whatever this force is, she realizes she’ll have to find a way to stop it—or she might lose not only her sister, but everyone she loves.

Goodreads | Amazon

Flower Moon is one of those books that once you start reading, it is hard to set down. Fans of magical realism will really enjoy this story that combines elements of magic and coming of age. The carnival setting gives the narrative a perfect backdrop, and the science that is used to describe the strangeness happening between the sisters is one that contains wonderful jumping off points for the classroom.

Gina Linko has created a classic bildungsroman in Flower Moon. The story is told from the perspective of Tally Jo who is struggling with not only trying to discover what this strange force is that is physically keeping her apart from her twin, but also figuring out who she is and where she is headed in life. Tally Jo is the perfect main character, as she is head strong, determined, and not afraid to take chances.

If there is one theme that draws me into a book right away, it is the carnival theme. There is something so mysterious and alluring about the carnival life. What kid hasn’t dreamed of a summer filled with rides, treats, and never-ending excitement? This setting adds a touch of intrigue to the already magical story and lures the reader right in.

There are quite a few teachable moments included in the book that make it perfect for classroom connections. The use of magnets and the wonderful descriptions that are given as to how they work provide fantastic ways to integrate this book into a science lesson. Also, the Flower Moon is something that I had not heard of before, and I found this was a very informative and interesting aspect to the book.

Flower Moon is a magical realism novel that is sure to be enjoyed by fans of the genre. It contains a beautiful coming of age story that has a perfect setting and many educational elements. I look forward to seeing the Flower Moon this year now that I have learned all about it!

684067Gina Linko likes to write books for kids and young people, because, in her opinion, they are the absolute best kinds of people.  Gina has two fluffy, fat cats, one of which is an evil genius.  She also has three kids, none of which are fluffy or evil geniuses, although they are quite interesting in their own human-like ways.  Gina lives in a suburb outside Chicago, where she works as a textbook editor and spends her free time reading and then reading some more.  She likes to stay up super late at night. She doesn’t like alarm clocks.  She really likes Hershey nuggets, playing euchre, and watching the Cubbies.

Her children like to call her Lil Gina, even though she’s six-feet tall.

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Book to Movie Review: Wonder by R.J. Palacio

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Don’t Judge a Book by its Movie is a feature on The Candid Cover spotlighting and reviewing book to movie adaptations. 

Wonder-RJ-Palacio

Author: R.J. Palacio
Publisher: Knopf
Cast: Jacob Tremblay, Owen Wilson, Izabela Vidovic, Julia Roberts
Director: Stephen Chbosky
Screenplay: Stephen Chbosky, Steve Conrad, Jack Thorne

Summary (From Goodreads): I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.

August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?

R. J. Palacio has written a spare, warm, uplifting story that will have readers laughing one minute and wiping away tears the next. With wonderfully realistic family interactions (flawed, but loving), lively school scenes, and short chapters, Wonder is accessible to readers of all levels.

Goodreads | Amazon

I haven’t read many middle grade novels in quite a while, and I have to admit that this is the first one that brought big tears to my eyes. Wonder is a one-of-a-kind book that deals with bullying in a way that is honest, raw, and eye-opening. The writing is crisp and witty, and the multiple perspectives really help to give the reader a deep understanding of all the sides to the story. Amazingly, the film is just as wonderful, and although it is a condensed version of the original, it maintains the original themes that Palacio has inspired her readers with.

Wonder has been one of those books that has been sitting on my TBR forever, and when the movie details were announced, I knew that the time had come to finally crack it open. For years I have heard nothing but praise for the messages and themes included in the novel, and I am pleased to say that the accolades given to this middle grade novel are well-deserved. It really is a book that can be enjoyed by everyone. The different points of view add to this effect, as there are so many generations of characters in this book. Auggie is such a fantastically developed character, and his perseverance in spite of all the adversity he faces is admirable. It is hard not to fall in love with him and his hilarious outlook on life.

Fans of the novel will most likely be very pleased that the story is very closely mirrored in the movie version. Albeit there are certain things that have been altered and twisted a little to bring it to the screen, but it in no way changes the outcome of the narrative. Jacob Tremblay is a perfect Auggie, and it is impressive how he seems to be able to really get into the role of such a multi-layered character.

Is the book better than the movie? Of course! However, if you are a fan of the book, you will not be disappointed. This is one story not to be missed whether you read it or see it.

Audiobook to Movie Review: A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

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Don’t Judge a Book by its Movie is a feature on The Candid Cover spotlighting and reviewing book to movie adaptations. 

Authors: Patrick Ness, Siobhan Dowd (conception)
Narrator: Jason Isaacs
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Cast: Lewis MacDougall, Sigourney Weaver, Felicity Jones, Liam Neeson
Director: J.A. Bayona
Screenplay: Patrick Ness

Book cover for A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
Summary (From Goodreads): An unflinching, darkly funny, and deeply moving story of a boy, his seriously ill mother, and an unexpected monstrous visitor.

At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting– he’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments. The monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd– whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself– Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined. Continue reading

Audiobook to Movie Review: The BFG by Roald Dahl

 

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Don’t Judge a Book by its Movie is a feature on The Candid Cover spotlighting and reviewing book to movie adaptations. 

I received advanced screening passes from Walt Disney Studios Canada to view this film.

27876704Author: Roald Dahl
Narrator: David Williams
Publisher: Listening Library
Cast: Mark Rylance, Ruby Barnhill, Rebecca Hall
Director: Stephen Spielberg
Screenplay: Melissa Mathison

Summary (from Goodreads): Captured by a giant!

The BFG is no ordinary bone-crunching giant. He is far too nice and jumbly. It’s lucky for Sophie that he is. Had she been carried off in the middle of the night by the Bloodbottler, or any of the other giants—rather than the BFG—she would have soon become breakfast. When Sophie hears that the giants are flush-bunking off to England to swollomp a few nice little chiddlers, she decides she must stop them once and for all. And the BFG is going to help her!  Continue reading

Audiobook to Movie Review: The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

 

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Don’t Judge a Book by its Movie is a feature on The Candid Cover spotlighting and reviewing book to movie adaptations. 

 

Book cover for The Little Prince by Antoine De Saint -Exupéry
Author: 
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Narrator: Humphrey Bower
Publisher: Bolinda Publishing
Cast: Jeff Bridges, James Franco, Marion Cotillard
Director: Mark Osborne
Screenplay: Irean Brignull and Robert Persichetti Jr.

Summary (from Goodreads): Moral allegory and spiritual autobiography, The Little Prince is the most translated book in the French language. With a timeless charm it tells the story of a little boy who leaves the safety of his own tiny planet to travel the universe, learning the vagaries of adult behaviour through a series of extraordinary encounters. His personal odyssey culminates in a voyage to Earth and further adventures. Continue reading