TDmonthly Magazine!
October 2010 | Vol. IX - No. 10
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Summary of Online Book Reviews

TD Scout Shares Consumer Reviews from Thousands of Websites


TDmonthly Magazine’s Review Scout scours the web weekly for reviews of new and hot products so you don’t have to spend your time searching. Out of thousands of blog, retail and other sites, his research has uncovered children’s books generating buzz across the nation and even the globe.



MSRP: $8.99
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books
Educational



Discover the secrets of chemistry, and learn about the properties of matter and the ways in which they interact, combine and change. Chemistry is a compelling guide to a community of characters who make up everything around us.
SimplyScience’s Shirley loved the book’s “funny (and accurate) introduction to the periodic table.” She imagined “the kid who is fascinated with science picking up this small trim-sized book, reading it, and showing it to all his/her friends.”
— Despite some issues with the book’s organization, Roberta Gibson of Wrapped in Foil found that the book makes chemistry concepts “fresh and interesting” by presenting the terms as characters. She loved that “The sections are written in the first person from that character’s point of view, and each section stands on its own.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 28855      (added 6/14/2010)
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MSRP: $17.95
Age Range: 6 and up
Launch Date: August 2010
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books
Plush
Novelties



Welcome to the wondrous world of Diana Schoenbrun's "Beasties," where mythic and imaginary creatures come alive from simple materials, such as scrap fabric and thread. From werewolves to zombies to yetis to unidentifiable yet adorable beasts, these projects allow crafters to push the limits of their imaginations to sew a menagerie of whimsical beings.
— “Author Diana Schoenbrun does a fantastic job of presenting an array of wonderful creatures to create,” proclaimed BookLegion. According to the reviewers, the monsters created based on the book “make great personalized gifts for others.”
— Jocelynn Brown of the Detroit News Handmade Crafts Blog loved that the book encouraged the resourceful use of fabric scraps, since the “more woven and textured scraps of fabric, the more interesting your creatures will look.” Her colleague Erik Henrickson loved the irreverent designs of the monsters, from the “soft and fluffy” Tomte to a “patriotic Werewolf” complete with “red, white and blue fur.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 29054      (added 6/23/2010)
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MSRP: $16.99
Age Range: 0 to 7
Target Age Range: 3 to 5
Specialty: Yes (as of 2010)
Made in: United States
SKU or Item #: 9781841486116
Launch Date: January 2004
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books
Science & Nature
Gifts



When the day has ended and everyone else has fallen asleep, a young boy embarks on a magical adventure with his friend the Moon. Their unusual journey is described in lyrical verse, creating a enchanting story that celebrates the serene beauty of the world at night. "The lyrical text and poetic voice adds a soothing factor to this imaginative tale," Barefoot Books Group Communications Director Leah Lesser told TDmonthly.
The Reading Tub praised the book for its “nice combination of reality reading (seeing one's glow in the water) and fantasy (the boy and moon sharing a night-time flight) that will appeal to all readers.” The reviewer added that “the notes at the back will be wonderful for expanding the book beyond the poetry when our toddler gets a little bit older.”
— Sheela from The Joy of My Life noted that the “delightful and dreamy” illustration “evokes a magical night world in this book, and, accompanied by rhythmic verse has become a bedtime must-read over the last few weeks in our house.” Sheela liked that the book contains factual scientific information while “still preserving the imaginative and magical world personifying the moon through the motley illustrations that project the ethereal story.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 29148      (added 6/25/2010)
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MSRP: $99.95
Age Range: 4 to 6
Target Age Range: 3 to 5
Specialty: Yes (as of 2010)
Made in: United States
SKU or Item #: LIT001
Launch Date: August 2010
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Language
Educational
Kits



Lightning Bug Literacy Kit Kindergarten Edition is designed to teach children essential skills that build a strong foundation for reading and writing. This program aims to help kids gain confidence while mastering grade level phonics, reading and writing skills. "This comprehensive, teacher-designed kit builds a foundation for literacy: reading, writing, reading comprehension and handwriting," Lightning Bug Learning President Julie Rebboah told TDmonthly.
— The mom blogger at Welcome to Our Wonderland read both Magic Letters and Magic Words from the kit. She stated that the “text is predictable so your child can learn the story and participate,” leading to “the clicking moment” when letter sounds and words are associated in the child’s mind. The reviewer and her daughter enjoyed the books “more then most other word family books.”
— Jenny Thompson of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine reviewed Magic Letter, Magic Words and the audio CD from the kit. Jenny exclaimed “I am not exaggerating when I say that these books changed our lives! These were the first books my daughter was enthusiastic about reading. She could not wait to read each story.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 30079      (added 8/17/2010)
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MSRP: $16.99
Age Range: 4 to 8
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



Racing has never been furrier than in Hot Rod Hamster by author Cynthia Lord and illustrator Derek Anderson. The rhythmic text tells the story of an enthusiastic hamster as he works to build his own racing machine and show off his lead foot. The beautiful illustrations bring to life sizzling hot rods and the hamster’s adorable animal friends.
— At Jama Rattigan’s Alphabet Soup, Jama was positively ecstatic over the main character of Hot Rod Hamster, who “oozes personality and kid appeal from every pore.” Jama especially liked the fact that the “characters talk in speech balloons, which keep the narrative humming along like a finely tuned, well-oiled machine.”
— Middle-school librarians Lynn Rutan and Cindy Dobrez of Bookends praised “Lord’s child-centered fun text and Anderson’s perfectly jaunty illustrations.” “This big picture book with its bright colors and bold shapes has our focus group’s name written all over it. Hamsters, race cars, building stuff — I knew they would love this and I wasn’t wrong,” stated Lynn.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 30682      (added 9/28/2010)
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Peter AounWriter's Bio: Peter Aoun is a communications professional focused on the toy industry. He has conducted research on the impact of music on learning, as well as the convergence of toys and technology to create new forms of play. Read more articles by this author

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