interactive books hallmark

I can’t tell you how amazed I am at the level of reading the girls, this year they have come on in leaps and bounds, we read the school reading books most evenings and then we also read a story together before lights out. It’s a moment we all treasure and one that sooner or later I’ll have to give up as they get to grips with reading on their own for joy, for the pure pleasure of reading.

I love reading and it was always going to be a passion I passed on to the twins, I remember when they were still 6 months old and rolling on the floor, I’d lay in between them and open a picture board book, pointing out the words and pictures to them, I could already see their interest.

They have always had books around them and learnt really early on to respect them, very few got torn and none were drawn on which is pretty amazing.

We have our favourites, The Gruffalo for one and The Twelve Dancing Princesses another but we rotate our books reading a different one every day, in my opinion a bit of repetition works well too as they start to remember the stories and this in turn helps with their own reading.

I am 100% sure that making reading such a huge part of our daily routine from such a young age has helped significantly with their learning to read so well.

Presented with books in Reception year they took to them immediately and enjoyed the process, they leapt through the reading stages and today they are on Gold Level reading books that are interesting and include ‘tricky’ words. I am so proud of them!

ORT reading levels

We have recently been sent a couple of Hallmark’s latest interactive Storybooks All Aboard and A Day at Fairy Grandmother’s to review and I knew the minute I saw the girls eyes light up as they turned them on they were going to love them.

All Aboard - Hallmark

The books are beautifully illustrated and the reading is simple to follow.

By pressing the on button at the start of the book, the book starts talking to you with music and sounds that are appropriate to the book you are reading, All Aboard for example starts with a train horn blowing and the friendly conductor Connor saying ‘I’m ready to read with you.’

As you read the font changes colour, one font for your bits and a different colour font is when the book picks up what you’re saying and joins in with extra speech or noises to reflect that part of the story. It’s important to read this part as clearly as possible. There were a couple of times we needed to repeat the phrase to encourage the book to join in and on one occasion we skipped ahead as the book didn’t recognise its cue.

a day at fairy grandmother's

The twins loved it, they were marvelled at the book reading with them, you should have seen the smiles and looks of wonder on their faces.

I think these books have a great story line, the children love the fact the book ‘talks’ to them and joins in with the story so they are fantastic for encouraging reading and showing it can be lots of fun RRP: £14.99

inheritance - sharon moalem‘It’s in his genes’

Do cancer/diabetes/Hip dysplasia run in families?

These common phrases would make you think that our genetic make up is fixed at conception and we’re stuck with it right? Well Dr Sharon Moalem has discovered differently and his new book opens up so much hope in so many areas of our life that the results are very, very exiting. His new book Inheritance explains exactly how.

The book transforms how we understand ourselves and our families by revealing that everything we thought we knew about genetics is wrong.

  • Your genes are not fixed
  • the traits you inherit aren’t unalterable
  • the way you behave can affect how these genes are passed down to your children

In a nutshell everything you do and experience in this life is recorded in your genes, the bullying at school, the cigarettes smoked as a teenager, the food you eat and the seemingly inconsequential matters, all recorded in your genes.

In fact our bodies are in a constant state of transformation and regeneration and our current experiences add to those changes, we have the power to change our own genetic destiny.

I often wonder what I have passed on to my children and what I have been passed down from my own parents. It’s true we live longer now, we eat better diets, live healthier lives and the majority of us are all for happier, healthier longer lives.

So imagine if we could alter the genes and correct asthma, eczema, hayfever and even cancer.

Maybe this book scratches the surface of a whole new area of medicine that will change our lives and help us learn how to live better lives, as Angelina Jolie shows us we can now be previvors rather than survivors.

For more information read this article in the Guardian.

Sharon Moalen is an award winning physician, scientist and bestselling author. He is an expert in the fields of rare diseases, neurogenetics, and biotechnology. His work has brought together evolution, genetics, biology, and medicine to explain how the human body works and in Inheritance he shows that the human genome is far more fluid that you’ve ever imagined. By studying in depth patients suffering from rare genetic conditions he can now tell us all about our own health and well being.

INHERITANCE will prepare us with what we need to be aware of. As we enter more fully into this brave new world, our relationships will be tested, and our lives will change. And as we’re about to see, so will our bodies.

Book out on 10th April

‘Wanted by no one, hunted by everyone’ really captured my interest and from those words i just couldn’t wait to start reading it!

Half Bad cover

Half Bad is the story of Nathan, a boy who grows up in a world where witches are real, and he is one. In a race against time before he turns 17. In a world where he is hunted, Nathan runs away in a bid to find his father to discover the truth about his life.

Join Nathan in his whirlwind of a journey in the amazing new novel Half Bad.

I really enjoyed this book and couldn’t put it down, it was such a page turner! I literally didn’t do anything but read the book last weekend! It was easy to get into and I loved seeing how the story would evolve. I enjoyed exploring a whole new world, that was right on my door step! I could easily interact with the characters and found myself completely invested into this book. The characters are so relatable and I loved seeing how the story would turn out, with such great twists along the way. A great fast-paced adventure that will leave you wanting more.
This book would be great for any teen who loves a good page turner and fantasy book. Any Harry Potter fan would also love it.

I just can’t WAIT to read the next book, I am on tenterhooks waiting for it!

 

In honour of World Book Day on Thursday, I thought I would write a post on why books are so amazing.

 

World Book Day 2014

World Book Day 2014

1. As soon as you open up a book, you enter a whole new world. 
Each book you open up has new things waiting for you, new experiences and new universes. Every book is different and unique, offering billions of circumstances.

2. A book gives you the freedom to decide what goes on. 
A film shows you exactly what the characters look like, what the world looks like and how everything is shown. However, when reading a book, it gives you the opportunity to  choose what goes on and how everything looks, in your own head.

3. A book is portable. 
You can take a book anywhere and everywhere! You can read it on an aeroplane, a car journey or a boat trip. The versatile nature means you can continue your story wherever you want and not matter about connecting to the internet or whether it will run out of charge!

4. You can pick up a book whenever you want, no commitment needed!
However much time you have in a day, you can read a book. No commitment is needed, you don’t have to finish a whole book, you can read a page if you want!

5. You can learn from books.
Whether it is a situation you have experienced or about to experience yourself, every book has something to learn from. A message that you can take away or even an experience that you now know how to handle just a little bit better, every book has something important to take away from it.

Happy World Book Day everyone!

Happy World Book Day 2014

Happy World Book Day 2014

Dandelion Clocks

With a similar theme to The Fault in our Stars, we follow the journey of Olivia,  a young girl who finds out that her mother has a life threatening illness and has to learn how to deal with it, as well as having to cope with the issues of everyday life, along with helping her autistic brother Isaac.

A typical 12 year old who loves taking photos, Liv finds it hard to come to terms with her mothers illness and the effects of what this has to bring. We see her compete with the struggles of this, as well as  reading her down to earth views as a child on the matter, with her thoughts and feelings laid plain.
This book shows the love and the relationship that can only be created between a mother and daughter but how it stays strong, no matter what happens, no matter the obstacles.

 If any young teen out there has read The Fault in our Stars then this is definitely a book for you!

A great book for any teen who may be going through an experience like this or just wants a touching book to read.

 I loved this book and from starting to read it on Monday evening, I couldn’t put it down until I had finished it! As a teenager myself, I could easily relate to her issues in everyday life, from boy troubles to best friends! It made me think about my own life and how lucky I was, as well as just simply enjoying the read and being on the ride with Liv.

An uplifting book that makes any reader stop and think, but it also great for an easy read.
Any fan of Jacqueline Wilson or Cathy Cassidy will also love this book!