Thursday, May 31, 2012

It's Raining Cupcakes, Sprinkles and Secrets & Little Chimp's Big Day by @lisa_schroeder

Featured Author for the Week - Lisa Schroeder

It's Raining Cupcakes by Lisa Schroeder
Available in Hardcover, Paperback and as an ebook
208 pages
First published: March 9th, 2010 by Aladdin 

Description from Goodreads:
Twelve-year-old Isabel is dying to get out of her small town of Willow, Oregon, and travel like her best friend, Sophie. But when Isabel’s mother decides to open up a cupcake shop across town, Isabel is once again stuck in Willow for the summer…until she learns of a baking contest where the finalists get an all-expenses paid trip to New York City to compete in the final bake-off. But Sophie is also entering the contest, and Isabel’s mother has reservations. Can Isabel finally realize her dreams of leaving Willow without hurting two of the most important people in her life?

This review was first posted on my blog at Candace's Book Blog
Woo hoo! Lisa has done it again! This book was very cute, with fantastic characterization, and an unbelievable story line. And it wasn't fluff. This was about a very realistic girl that has to deal with family issues. No one dies or anything too drastic like that, but it's just normal family issues. I think every 12 year old girl can relate in so many ways to Isabel and the situations she's put in. I really felt a connection to Isabel and her life even though I'm 29 years old and was never in any sort of situation like her. I just really felt like she was easy to get. And her whole family was! Things weren't always easy for them and at times I wanted to scream at her mother, but the way Isabel handled things was realistic and showed what a great person she was.
This book had cute cupcake names for each chapter, like Strawberry lemonade cupcakes (I've been craving strawberry lemonade since I read that chapter). It also has fantastic recipe's that we can't wait to try out!
I think this is a fantastic book for middle grade girls, but my daughter (who's 5) also enjoyed it a lot. I only read her bits and pieces because I was so anxious to get through it, but this will definitely be a reread for us. I think this would be a fantastic book for a reluctant reader. It's easy to read and relate-able and it has life issues mixed in with a lot fun!

Sprinkles and Secrets is out and while I was too lazy to review it at the time I read it, I loved it as well!  This one is about Isobel's best friend, so it's a companion novel rather than a sequel. 

Sprinkles and Secrets by Lisa Schroeder
Hardcover, 208 pages
First published: September 20th, 2011 by Aladdin 
Description from Goodreads:

 In this companion novel to It's Raining Cupcakes, twelve-year-old Sophie has a dream come true when she's offered a TV commercial spot. She's not just happy about the opportunity, she's over the moon happy!

But then she finds out what exactly she'll be advertising: the delectable, ever-popular brownies from Beatrice's Brownies, which just so happens to be the number one competitor to It's Raining Cupcakes, a cupcake shop owned by her best friend, Isabel's, family.

Sophie has a tough choice to make: Follow her dreams or crush her best friend. What's a girl to do?

Little Chimp's Big Day by Lisa Schroeder
Hardcover, 24 pages
First published: September 7th, 2010 by Sterling
Description from Goodreads:

In the jungle, in a tree
Sits a little chimpanzee.
Mother said she'd be right back
But now the branch snaps with a crack…

And in a SNAP, Little Chimp is off on a big adventure-taking a watery ride atop a hippo, swinging on vines, and munching bunches of bananas. But as he goes bumping, jumping, and racing across the jungle, he never stops wondering: Where could Mother be?” Little Chimp may not know, but sharp-eyed kids will see that mommy has an eye on him all the time! An enchanting text filled with rhythm and rhyme, and sweetly charming illustrations. 
This review was first posted on my blog at Candace's Book Blog.
This is hands down my favorite children's book this year and perhaps EVER. As a parent it seems like kids always pick the books that aren't fun for the parents to read. This is one my kids love AND I love! Lisa Schroeder may be one of my favorite authors for her young adult books, but she is now one of my favorite children's book authors as well. And Lisa McCue is the best illustrator! These pictures are so cute!

This book is a joy to read as it rhymes so it's fun and easy because of the lovely flow. But the kids love it because of all adventuresome things that Little Chimp does. It's also an easier one to memorize so they can 'read' along with you.

The book has the message that even when your parents let you run and have grand adventures they are always watching over you, even if you don't know it.

The illustrations are great because you can see that the whole time Little Chimps mother is hiding but still watching him. Each page also has a caterpillar for you to find. So it's very interactive and the kids love looking for the mother and the caterpillar. The pictures are also vibrant and colorful. I wish I could get Lisa McCue to come paint a mural in my playroom!

*Note: I read and reviewed this book when it very first came out.  It's now a couple years later and this is still my favorite book to read to the kids.  They still love it just as much as they did when it was brand new to us!  I very highly recommend you pick this one up if you have kids or grandchildren.

Find Lisa on: Her webpage | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter

Disclosure:  All opinions expressed are my own and I was not paid or influenced in any way.  All the books were purchased. 

These reviews were done by Candace.
Candace is a wife and mother to two. She’s blogged at Candace’s Book Blog since November 2008. She enjoys a variety of genres including anything and everything young adult, some adult urban fantasy, a little bit of adult paranormal romance, some historical fiction and reads lots of childrens books. You can find her on her blog at, twitter @candacemom2two and on goodreads.

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