Book Review: “Larry Gets Lost in the Library” by Eric Ode

Larry Gets Lost in the Library is a fun picture book set to release on August 3, 2021. The story follows a puppy named Larry who’s search for a book turns into an adventure that takes him to the city library.

A young boy named Pete is visiting his grandparents on the farm for the summer and his puppy, Larry, is with him. One day the bookmobile stops by the farm and Pete comes out with books to read. Larry wants a book to read too! But puppies aren’t allowed in bookmobiles. No one sees Larry sneak inside, and, soon after, he gets carted away on an adventure to the city as the bookmobile returns to the library.

Larry Gets Lost in the Library is a rhyming picture book. Its simple, upbeat rhythm pairs well with the pace of this light-hearted adventure. Each setting mirrors the changing pace as the story progresses, shown through playful pictures depicting the movement and details children love. And what a treat to see a wet puppy join the children for the library’s story time!

I love that in the end, Pete knows what Larry wants and he chooses a book in the bookmobile that’s just right for his pup.

Larry Gets Lost in the Library would be great as a read aloud or for newly independent readers. The story offers parents and teachers a chance to discuss farm life, library etiquette, and strategies for what to do if you get lost.

I received this book as an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

Larry Gets Lost in the Library is available on Amazon and anywhere else fine books are sold. Learn more on the publisher’s website: Little Big Foot (an imprint of Sasquatch Books).

About Larry Gets Lost in the Library

The latest in the best-selling Larry Gets Lost series, featuring the perpetually lost pup, Larry, celebrates libraries and librarians.

Larry, a playful pup, loves to go on vacation with Pete. In this edition they visit Pete’s grandparents on a farm. When a bookmobile arrives, Pete is excited to select a stack of books. As Pete reads, he doesn’t notice that Larry, in search of a snack, wanders into the bookmobile.

Larry’s adventure begins when the librarian drives away, not realizing Larry is on board, to return the bookmobile to the city library. Larry, searching for Pete, soon finds himself lost inside the library, where he is surrounded by busy librarians and patrons enjoying books. But will he ever find his way back to his best friend Pete?

About Eric Ode

Eric Ode is a national award-winning children’s singer, songwriter, author, and poet who performs for schools, libraries, and community events. He is also the author of Sea Star Wishes, Bigfoot Does Not Like Birthday Parties, and coauthor of Larry Gets Lost Under the Sea.

About John Skewes (Illustrator)

John Skewes is the creator and illustrator of the award-winning Larry Gets Lost children’s book series, John has followed Larry from the southern tip of Texas to tiny Nome, Alaska, and has been lost several times himself. He has illustrated over 30 children’s books, including the Elliott the Otter, A Ticket to the Pennant, and the Wetmore Forest books. He now works for Funko in Everett, Washington.

***View more book reviews here. ***

Thanks to Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Text for hosting #IMWAYR. Check out the other It’s Monday! What Are You Reading posts!

Guest Post: Swords and Magic and Intrigue, Oh My by Lee James

Lee James is on the blog today. She’s the author of Casket Case, Sweet Honesty, and the recent Christian fantasy release Azriel.

Lee’s kindly offered to share some insight into her creative journey and the characters of Azriel. Please welcome Lee James!

I’ve always been a huge fan of the fantasy genre. Swords and intrigue and magic, oh my.

The story that would eventually morph into Azriel came to me years ago. I did nothing with it. At the time I was focused on my historical fiction novel and, you know, life. But the sound of hoofbeats would come to me at the oddest times.

Eventually, the Watchmen themselves showed up.

Rafe, the Maje’s son who fell from grace. He was once the strongest of the Watchmen, the finest swordsman in a hundred years. Now he hides from his people. There had never been a shame like his. No one could condemn himself more than he could.

Wesley, Rafe’s best friend and the one who helped pull him back from the brink, showed up next. Then the others came, Finn, Darice, and lastly, strange enough, came Bree. This first episode in the series centers around her, but in the beginning she was a mystery to me.

You see, in my mind, the Watchmen epitomized all that is good and just. Who would wish them harm? Bree. But why?

For that, I had to dig into her story, find out where she came from. We don’t become who we are overnight. Our lives follow a pattern, a measured beat that, if we don’t deviate from it, will lead us to a single destination. Bree’s destination was one of horrific pain. But could her brothers and sisters, the Watchmen, help save her?

That is how Azriel began.

I thought about the Garden and all we gave up when we were forced out. Never-ending peace. Perfect health, no want, no loss, no hate. What if it were still accessible? What if there was a people designated to care for this place but they were slowly being consumed by enemies from within and without? Who would save those designated to save others? We are never toughenough to save ourselves. Even the strongest need someone to pull them out. Even the bravest need a shoulder to cry on.

Azriel is the story of a people blessed with many abilities. These abilities were given to them to protect the Garden of Eden. But, like so many born into human form, great power corrupts so utterly and so easily. But even in all of this, our God protects and saves to the uttermost.

I am beyond excited to share this tale with you. The characters are fictional. The hope is real.

Azriel is now available from book retailers or for request at your local library.

About Azriel

Bree Faro learns early in life that she can only depend on herself. Due to her feisty nature and unusual ability with a sword, she is educated in every fighting style imaginable and excels at them all. When she’s sent to infiltrate the city of Azriel, Bree does not expect to find her place among the Watchmen of the Keep, but they welcome her as one of their own.

Little does Bree know that her new companions are in danger.

An immortal creature lies in wait for any Keeper of the Flame, the city’s water source has dried up, and they are under constant attack from the Yirtzi—former Watchmen reduced to vengeful spirits, who sold their souls for power only to realize the enemy of Yahweh does not translate to the friend of mankind. Not only that, but the Watchmen are fraying. Hostilities come to a head when a Watchman is murdered.

Only a Watchman can kill another Watchman, and all eyes shift to Bree.

Bree finds herself faced with a choice. Does she engineer the betrayal of the powerful city, or does she embrace her destiny as a true Watchman of Yahweh and find the killer before it’s too late?

About Lee James

Lee James writes stories of hope and redemption. Whether she creates fantasy, mystery, or historical fiction, her beautifully awkward characters traverse a dark labyrinth on their journey to a hopeful end. Her work is dedicated to sharing the beauty of Christ, one faith- infused project at a time. Keep up to date with Lee and her stories at http://www.leejameswrites.com.

Amazon Author: http://www.amazon.com/Lee-James/e/B08L1H5HSK
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/20795422.Lee_James
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/ljamesthewriter
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/LJamestheWriter
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/writerleejames
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/LeJa56/azriel

Azriel Blog Tour

Monday, June 14th
Azriel: The Watchmen Saga Begins, Laurin Boyle
Interview with Lee James, Author of Azriel, Mary Schlegel

Tuesday, June 15th
Review of Azriel by Lee James, Pam Halter
Azriel Release Day: A Most Sacred Secret, Lee James

Wednesday, June 16th
Azriel Blog Tour: A Writer Writes, Laura A. Grace

Thursday, June 17th
Review of Azriel by Lee James, Crystal Grant
Azriel Release Party Tonight, Michele Israel Harper

Friday, June 18th
Weekend Reads: Review of Azriel by Lee James, Laurie Lucking
Azriel Blog Tour: Swords and Magic and Intrigue, Oh My,” K.A. Cummins

The Shoals Writers Guild

***Rescheduled to August 21.***

The Shoal Writers Guild of Florence, Alabama has invited me to speak at their meeting on June 26th!

The Shoals Writers Guild is an educational guild for published authors and writers seeking publication. Each month, they host two speakers at their meeting: an author and a community professional. You can learn more about them through their Facebook page.

I’m honored and excited to be joining them next Saturday. The meeting begins at 10 am and will take place at the Florence-Lauderdale Public Library in the downstairs conference room.

Rescheduled to August 21st.

Due to illness, I had to cancel at the last minute. However, the Shoals Writer’s Guild graciously offered to reschedule for a later date.

Finding God in Anime with Laura Grace and Moriah Jane

K.A.:
Laura Grace and Moriah Jane are on the blog today talking about Finding God in Anime, a new devotion for Christian anime enthusiasts.

Welcome, Laura Grace and Moriah Jane! Glad to have you two here. Tell us a bit about Finding God in Anime.

LG & MJ:
Thanks so much for letting us chat with you about our latest release! :D We are so excited to be here and we’re thrilled to share our first ever devotional! While we’re not the only contributors as there are more than fifteen of us, we are the organizers too.

LG & MJ:
Being a Christian can be tough. Being an otaku can be tough. But being both at once? Sometimes it seems easier to become Hokage rather than explaining your faith and passions to others. That is why we otaku have united in this devotional: To encourage otaku like you spiritually and through a medium we all cherish.

In this devotional, you will find God in the animes you know and love. Each devotional presents spiritual lessons found in animes ranging from the world-famous Attack on Titan to fan-favorite Haikyu!! to beloved classics like Cowboy Bebop. Each piece will feature a different theme such as:

—Human Will vs. The Holy Spirit in Yona of the Dawn
—Choosing to be Free in Free! Swim Club
—Not by My Might in My Hero Academia

…and many others! We believe that God can be seen throughout His creation—even in places where people might not intend! So pull out your cosplay and snuggle close with your plushies as you join us in Finding God in Anime.

K.A.:
How did the idea for your devotional come about?

LG:
My friend Moriah (now co-partner) and I were sharing one day that we really wanted an anime-inspired devotional. It wasn’t the first time, but on this random day she voiced she still really wanted one and a week prior I had been thinking the same thing! :o

So, I asked her a crazy question: “What about if we did one?”

And so began the creation of Finding God in Anime: A Devotional for Otakus!

MJ:
Exactly what Laura said, haha! I had been praying for a way to use my love of anime for God, but I didn’t know how to go about it. When I mentioned to Laura my thoughts on an anime-inspired devotional, she was ecstatic and told me she had been contemplating a devotional too! It was pretty cool and totally a God thing.

K.A.:
What sort of research went into writing this devotional; did you venture into any new areas or topics?

LG:
Surprisingly, there wasn’t much research involved in the devotional itself, but more of how to handle the “business” side of things. This was Moriah and I’s first time overseeing a project like this and we wanted to do things the smoothest way possible for the contributors and ourselves. I asked a friend who had formed a few anthologies of how she handled editing, disturbing paperbacks, and overall marketing. It was a great learning experience and I think it was a testimony to me that the writer community really does have a willingness to help other writers.

MJ:
It was definitely more business research than anything. We wanted to find a way to keep costs low, if not practically non-existent, for the devotional. But that became tricky as we still wanted a professional cover and needed help with formatting and edits. So we did a lot of research into how to create a devotional without all the costs.

The only other research I can think of is anime-wise. Some shows Laura and I were unfamiliar with, so we had to look them up to ensure the content fit our guidelines and rules.

K.A.:
What’s the most interesting discovery you made writing this story?

LG:
Writing a press release! LOL! Granted, my co-partner wrote our press release, but neither one of us had written one before. While that might sound boring as an interesting discovery, it was exciting to be able to research and learn how to do one! (Psst. Moriah is a pro!)

MJ:
100% writing a press release, LOL! I was on my phone one morning when Laura messages me, “Hey, have you ever written a press release?” My answer was, “A what?” LOL! But it all turned out great, I think. Laura was super helpful in pulling together the information needed. It was crazy but super fun to take on that adventure together! (Thanks Laura! <3 )

K.A.:
Any hidden references or tidbits readers should keep an eye out for?

LG:
SO many! I think Moriah and I did our best to make sure that all the pieces are fairly spoiler free, but I know I was beyond excited to be able to feature one of my favorite animes of all time: Haikyu!!

MJ:
All the chapter pictures in the book are references to either animes or anime tropes! Laura and I laughed and generally had an absolute blast thinking up the different chapter pictures. I think the glinting glasses are my favorite, hahaha!

K.A.:
Is there anything you didn’t already mention that would be of interest to readers?

LG:
There will be a second volume! While this was definitely a learning experience, it was also a very moving one. So many pieces made me tear up and all of them moved my heart. There is something powerful knowing we are not alone in our love for multiple fandoms or a certain style of storytelling.

MJ:
Volume two!!! Woot woot! There aren’t many details yet, but we’re considering a dual theme of shounen and shoujo ;) Nothing is official, but that’s the direction we’re considering taking for volume two! I’m super excited to see what amazing devotionals we’ll—Lord willing—get to see for the next installment!

K.A.:
Thanks, Laura and Moriah, for sharing about your journey to publish Finding God in Anime!

K.A.:
Finding God in Anime is available on Amazon and other book retailers. And the ebook is free to download!

About Laura Grace and Moriah Jane

Laura and Moriah’s life consists of giving each other manga recommendations until they see whose TBR pile will fall on them first. Rest assured they’re both still safe…until another manga releases. In the meantime, they enjoy sharing beautiful pictures of Japan and trying to make each other laugh with anime memes. They both have an appreciation for cute stickers, samurai, and pins. If they’re not chatting about all things otaku, you can find them trying to write their next story or surviving on ramen and pocky after their latest manga order.

Learn more through Laura’s website here: https://www.lauraagrace.com/findinggodinanime

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, May 31st
Blog Tour Kick-Off, Laura A. Grace
Special Feature, C.O. Bonham
Book Spotlight, Author E.E. Rawls

Tuesday, June 1st
Special Feature, Angela R. Watts
Book Spotlight, Jenna Terese

Wednesday, June 2nd
Book Spotlight, The Clean Fiction Blog

Thursday, June 3rd
Book Spotlight, Author Hannah Carter

Friday, June 4th
Book Spotlight, Deeply Shallow

Saturday, June 5th
Book Review, SJ Barnard

Monday, June 7th
Book Review, The Artist Librarian
Behind-the-Scenes Interview, K.A. Cummins

Tuesday, June 8th
Book Spotlight, Tabitha Caplinger

Wednesday, June 9th
Book Review, Piper Bee Blog

Thursday, June 10th
Book Review, Erudessa Gentian Blog

Friday, June 11th
Special Feature & Review, Bigger on the Inside

Saturday, June 12th
Blog Tour Wrap-Up, Laura A. Grace

*** View past interviews and guest posts here. ***

Keagan’s Review of “Fear No Evil” by Allen Brokken

Fear No Evil is a middle-grade christian fantasy novel by Allen Brokken. It includes magical beings like giants, acidic salamanders, and small goblin-like creatures who live in peace with bears. And a world where the Darkness threatens the peace between all creatures.

Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan are separated when the ferry carrying them across a dangerous river is attacked by a corrupted giant. They are now being hunted down by creatures controlled by the Darkness that wish to capture or possibly kill them. They must survive being hunted, reunite with each other, and light the Tower of Light in Blooming Glen, or Zoura will be lost to the Darkness.

I enjoyed Fear no Evil. It told an attention-grabbing story filled with strange places and mystical beings. It also had many informative points of view that made it clear to me anyone controlled by darkness may not know they are corrupted.

Fear No Evil is the third book in the Towers of Light series. I recommend this series to anyone who enjoys fantasy adventure novels woven with faith.

Fear No Evil is available on Amazon.

About Still Small Voice

Across the land of Zoura, people and creatures alike continue to fall prey to the persuasion of darkness. The seeds of evil pollute not only those outside the Light, but those within it. Pitting neighbor against neighbor. Brother against brother. The Dark One gains ground in his pursuit to shroud the heathlands in eternal darkness. Zoura’s only hope lies with three children.

Twelve-year-old Lauren and her younger brothers, Aiden and Ethan, are determined to reignite the Tower of Light in Blooming Glen. But an attack by dark forces separates them, driving them into a valley of darkness. Without each other or their Knight Protector, the three siblings must navigate the wilderness while fending off creatures tainted by evil. They fight not just for Zoura, but for their own survival.

Will the darkness overtake Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan? Or will they prove their faith is stronger and that they fear no evil?

Fans of Little House on the Prairie will feel at home in the series’ classic frontier setting, and the sincerity of the children’s love for one another and desire to do the right thing will bring a smile to readers and listeners of all ages.

About Allen Brokken

Allen Brokken is a teacher at heart, a husband and father most of all. He’s a joyful writer by the abundant grace of God. Follow his endeavors @towersoflight, @twodadsandajoke, and http://www.brokken.net. Your children can grow their own faith and love of God by following the adventures of Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan (plus their pets!) at instagram.com/towersoflight.

Now thru June 12th, a group of authors are offering nearly 50 free middle-grade ebooks! (Newsletter sign up required.)