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Send us your toys ... and you may be eligible to win a TDmonthly Magazine Top Toy Award!

Well-reviewed toys and products recommended by specialty retailers are more likely to be nominated for a TDmonthly Award and appear in our annual Specialty Toys Report. For submission information, please see the bottom of the page.



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Recent Reviews:

Write On! Printing DVD Tutor Kit by INCREDIBLE KIDName: Write On! Printing DVD Tutor Kit
Company: INCREDIBLE KID
Age: 3-8
Price: $24.99
Category: Educational

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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Animals — Craft Kit & DVD by TOT-A-DOODLE-DO!Name: Animals — Craft Kit & DVD
Company: TOT-A-DOODLE-DO!
Age: 3-7
Price: $19.95
Category: Videos & DVDs

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You Build It — Motor Mania by SMARTLAB TOYSName: You Build It — Motor Mania
Company: SMARTLAB TOYS
Age: 8 and up
Price: $18.99
Category: Science & Nature

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Diner Dash by BRIGHTER MINDS MEDIAName: Diner Dash
Company: BRIGHTER MINDS MEDIA
Age: 5 and up
Price: Not Specified
Category: General Games

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You Mix It – Secret Formula Lab by SMARTLAB TOYSName: You Mix It – Secret Formula Lab
Company: SMARTLAB TOYS
Age: 5 and up
Price: Not Specified
Category: Science & Nature

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What a Way to Play! by VERY DERRYBERRY PRODUCTIONSName: What a Way to Play!
Company: VERY DERRYBERRY PRODUCTIONS
Age: All Ages
Price: $12.00
Category: Audio & CD

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New Orleans Playground by PUTUMAYO KIDSName: New Orleans Playground
Company: PUTUMAYO KIDS
Age: All Ages
Price: $14.98
Category: Audio & CD

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Just-Like-Mine! Doll or Stuffed Toy Booster Car Seat by JOOVYName: Just-Like-Mine! Doll or Stuffed Toy Booster Car Seat
Company: JOOVY
Age: 3 and up
Price: $34.99
Category: Infant & Toddler

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Twisted Tales, Phonics Comics by INNOVATIVEKIDSName: Twisted Tales, Phonics Comics
Company: INNOVATIVEKIDS
Age: 6 and up
Price: $3.99
Category: Books

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Each Little Bird That Sings by HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURTName: Each Little Bird That Sings
Company: HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURT
Age: 8-12
Price: $7.95
Category: Books

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Calavera Abecedario: A Day of the Dead Alphabet Book by HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURTName: Calavera Abecedario: A Day of the Dead Alphabet Book
Company: HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURT
Age: 3-7
Price: Not Specified
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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Christmas Eve Magic by KIDS CAN PRESSName: Christmas Eve Magic
Company: KIDS CAN PRESS
Age: 5-8
Price: $16.95
Category: Books

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Lift Off: A Photobiography of John Glenn by NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETYName: Lift Off: A Photobiography of John Glenn
Company: NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY
Age: 10-12
Price: Not Specified
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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What Elephant? by KIDS CAN PRESSName: What Elephant?
Company: KIDS CAN PRESS
Age: 3-7
Price: Not Specified
Category: Books

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Benny by KANE/MILLER BOOK PUBLISHERSName: Benny
Company: KANE/MILLER BOOK PUBLISHERS
Age: 3-5
Price: $7.95
Category: Books

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Marco Polo: The Boy Who Traveled the Medieval World by NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETYName: Marco Polo: The Boy Who Traveled the Medieval World
Company: NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY
Age: 4-8
Price: $17.95
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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How Do Dinosaurs Play With Their Friends? by SCHOLASTICName: How Do Dinosaurs Play With Their Friends?
Company: SCHOLASTIC
Age: 2-5
Price: $6.99
Category: Books

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Jurassic Poop: What Dinosaurs (and Others) Left Behind by KIDS CAN PRESSName: Jurassic Poop: What Dinosaurs (and Others) Left Behind
Company: KIDS CAN PRESS
Age: 8-12
Price: $14.95
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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Let´s Go Lobstering by BARKING LOBSTER ENTERTAINMENTName: Let´s Go Lobstering
Company: BARKING LOBSTER ENTERTAINMENT
Age: 2 and up
Price: Not Specified
Category: Videos & DVDs

What Is It?
“Lets Go Lobstering” is a child-friendly introduction into the world of lobster fishing. This 30-minute educational DVD follows the daily life of Lobsterman Chris as he tries to help out his friend in Vermont, where every restaurant seems to have run out of lobster. 
 
What We Thought
The story starts with a bumbling joe roaming from restaurant to restaurant in search of delicious lobster, which segues nicely into the world of his friend Lobsterman Chris. Chris takes kids into the world of lobstering where they’ll learn everything from the kinds of boats used for catch lobsters, to the equipment needed, to what lobsters like to eat (literally everything). While watching, I took mental notes of questions that I wanted answered. Because this is a homegrown production and not some Discovery Channel exclusive, I assumed that there would be certain items of interest that would be overlooked. I was wrong! The DVD is surprisingly comprehensive and as fun for adults as it is for kids.  I would absolutely recommend this for any public or private viewing.
 
Why They´ll Want It
Kids will be fascinated by these “insects” of the ocean, as there isn´t much kid-friendly lobster material out there. “Let’s Go Lobstering” does an excellent job imparting an all-around knowledge of lobstering with a style and presentation that is meant for kids, but will appeal to all ages. — Jon Arsenault, 12/4/06

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Storytime: First Tales for Sharing by BAREFOOT BOOKSName: Storytime: First Tales for Sharing
Company: BAREFOOT BOOKS
Age: 1-7
Price: $19.99
Category: Books

What Is It?
This book retells seven of the world’s best-known folk tales, including “The Three Little Pigs” and “Goldilocks and the Three Bears,” in a fashion ideal for reading aloud so that parents and young children can enjoy the adventurous stories together.

What We Thought
“Storytime” provides a solid introduction to stories that children are likely to hear time and again, familiarizing them with the world of folk tales. For this reason, it carries lasting quality in any home library and can be passed down through generations. Some kids may lose interest because it’s rather text heavy, but that gives parents a chance to return to the stories often.

Why They’ll Want It
Seven stories makes for a great value and give children a whole week’s worth of bedtime reading. Kids will love the colorful, playful illustrations, and can learn lessons along with the characters while laughing at the dilemmas that entangle them. — Julie L. Jones, 11/27/06

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The Farmyard Jamboree by BAREFOOT BOOKSName: The Farmyard Jamboree
Company: BAREFOOT BOOKS
Age: 1-7
Price: $15.99
Category: Books

What Is It?
In this book inspired by a Chilean folktale and illustrated with an Andean setting, each verse of the story introduces another animal. A male narrator leads readers through an upbeat song on the included singalong CD.

What We Thought
The story provides a great way for young children to learn about animals, their babies, and families, as each animal is given to the little boy narrator by a different member of his family. Bob King’s music and sound effects bring an extra dose of life to the bright pages. By the time there were 12 or 14 animals on the scene, I even found myself boppin’ and singing along with the music. Each verse renames the previously mentioned pets, reinforcing their identities for attentive children.

Why They’ll Want It
Kids will go crazy over the animals sounds ¾ everything from “cluck” to “oink” ¾ and will certainly appreciate the audible sampling. This is one book where an accompanying track really makes a difference. They will learn to love the farmyard pets as much as the narrator does, and will want to dance with the entire crew at the conclusion of the story. — Julie L. Jones, 11/27/06

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Magic Train Ride by BAREFOOT BOOKSName: Magic Train Ride
Company: BAREFOOT BOOKS
Age: 1-7
Price: $16.99
Category: Books

What Is It?
On this train ride, the locomotive stops in all sorts of “wild and wonderful places,” taking readers on a magical journey that will pique young imaginations. A singalong CD accompanies the book.

What We Thought
Just when you think the journey’s over, the train whistle blows again and it’s off to another destination. The stations are fun and unpredictable, and the train boasts a mix of eclectic characters. How often does an octopus ride with a fairy, after all? The music complements the story, but children will probably want more time to explore the pages on their own.

Why They’ll Want It

Excitement ensues at the beginning of the CD, as the train starts chug-a-chugging along and the whistle blows. The sound effects bring readers closer to the action, drawing them into the inviting illustrations, and the “faster, faster we go, then suddenly we’re slow” sections give children a fun pace to recreate on their own. Whether they like outer space or forests or cakes, they’re sure to enjoy the ride! — Julie L. Jones, 11/27/06

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Gift of Enlightenment by VERITAS PRODUCTIONSName: Gift of Enlightenment
Company: VERITAS PRODUCTIONS
Age: 14 and up
Price: $39.95
Category: General Games

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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Eric Carle Books Block Puzzle by MUDPUPPY PRESSName: Eric Carle Books Block Puzzle
Company: MUDPUPPY PRESS
Age: 3 and up
Price: $13.00
Category: Puzzles & Skill

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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Bananagrams by BANANAGRAMSName: Bananagrams
Company: BANANAGRAMS
Age: 7 and up
Price: $14.95
Category: General Games

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Happy Birthday CoCo by KANE/MILLER BOOK PUBLISHERSName: Happy Birthday CoCo
Company: KANE/MILLER BOOK PUBLISHERS
Age: 4-8
Price: $12.95
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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The Strictest School in the World by KIDS CAN PRESSName: The Strictest School in the World
Company: KIDS CAN PRESS
Age: 9-12
Price: $6.95
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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All Hallow's Eve: 13 Stories by HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURTName: All Hallow's Eve: 13 Stories
Company: HOUGHTON MIFFLIN HARCOURT
Age: 12 and up
Price: $17.00
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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Crispin: At the Edge of the World by HYPERION BOOKS FOR CHILDRENName: Crispin: At the Edge of the World
Company: HYPERION BOOKS FOR CHILDREN
Age: 10-14
Price: $16.99
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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The Cremation of Sam McGee by KIDS CAN PRESSName: The Cremation of Sam McGee
Company: KIDS CAN PRESS
Age: All Ages
Price: $17.95
Category: Books

Please click here to read TDmonthly´s Toy Expert review of this product.

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Toys can be submitted without a fee to be considered for editorial review. However, manufacturers who wish to guarantee that their toys will be evaluated in the Review section should send payment of $150 per toy* along with the toy itself to:

Product Review Dept.
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12340 Santa Monica Blvd. Suite 226.
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Many of the toys considered for review are donated to children's services organizations, such as Children's Hospital Los Angeles. Also, to recover the cost of reviewing, starting August/2012 we may occasionally resell products that are sent to us.

* Please make checks payable to ToyDirectory.com, Inc. Payment does not guarantee a positive review. Advertising with ToyDirectory and TDmonthly Magazine does not guarantee a positive review. Quality, play value and educational value are considered when reviewing toys and games.

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