The Tremendous Trio: How They Met

The Tremendous Trio: How They Met is an illustrated storybook about a scruffy dog, a boy named Nash, a girl named Alice, and how they become friends.

It is a fun storybook to read; on how a shy girl overcomes her shyness and builds confidence. The truth is that none of us are born with social skills; there are things that we learn over time. Whatever our age or situation, we can learn to overcome shyness or social awkwardness, banish loneliness, and enjoy strong, fulfilling friendships.

 

The Story

The scruffy dog likes to make friends with other dogs, but it seems that she is not pretty enough to mix with those that had names and collars, that didn’t have ticks and fleas or dirt and mites. She is sad.

Alice is feeling awkward around unfamiliar people (it’s her first day at an orphanage), unsure of what to say, and worries about what others might think of her. She is shy too. When other kids ask if she likes to play together, she just stares at her feet till they go away. She is sad.

On the contrary, Nash who lives in the same orphanage, never seems afraid of anything; he talks a lot and all kids seem to like him. He is one happy boy.

One day, the scruffy dog and Alice cross path with each other and quickly became friends. Alice named the dog Bella and takes Bella to the orphanage. The scruffy happy Bella quickly makes friends with all the kids in the orphanage; they like to play with her and did not care about her scruffy appearance.

Alice learned from Bella how to be brave and confident. Alice begins to say ‘yes’ when other kids ask her to play. She sometimes even asks if she can join and play together.

Alice overcomes her shyness and becomes Nash’s best friend. Together with Bella, they often play together and likes to make up wondrous adventures. Soon they become inseparable and become The Tremendous Trio.

They have lots of fun in the orphanage. You must read to find out what are the adventures they are up to. From the last page, the author ensures that there will be other adventures for The Tremendous Trio. How They Met is the first and describes each of them, and how they meet.

The Book

Title: The Tremendous Trio: How They Met
Publisher: Oyez!Books
ISBN: 9789670908069
Author: Quek Sue Yian
Illustrator: Evi Shelvia
Language: English
Format: Softcover
Size: 210 x 148.5mm
Pages:52
Price: RM22.00

The Author and Illustrator

QUEK SUE YIAN has published short stories and articles for newspapers. Kailash is Sue’s first venture in writing a story for children and adults alike. She is the founder of One-for-One Books, a not-for-profit organisation that distributes books to less privileged children. She is also the publisher of MagicBird Publishing that publishes picture books that encourage children to ask questions. The books are part of her Wisdom Club for children.

EVI SHELVIA was born in Jakarta. She studied industrial design. In 2009 her family moved to Kuala Lumpur following her husband’s new appointment. The first picture book she illustrated, The Gift of the Ladybug, was an Amazon bestseller on the first day of its launch. This encouraged her to illustrate children’s picture books professionally. She has illustrated for a number of picture books both locally and internationally.

You can buy this book from Oyez Book Store online or you can visit Silverfish Book Store at Level 2, Bangsar Shopping Vilage 2, KL

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The Castle Library reminds that sometimes you find the best treasures in books

The Castle Library is a story about Princess Lily who loves to travel. From travel, she learned many new things. She has seen Pyramids of Giza, walked along Great Walls of China and practically travel from one end of the world to the other.

Around the world

 

One day, Princess Lily ran out of places to visit because she visited all. Her father, the Sultan, summoned all wise people in his kingdom for ideas on where to travel next. The engineer suggested a rocket and off to the moon she went. And then the pilot suggested hot air balloon and off she went to touch the fluffy clouds.

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Then there’s no more places to go. Out of boredom, Princess Lily went to the old library that her great, great, great grandfather had built. After reading many books, she realised that she could actually travel to places she never been. She travelled down the rabbit holes as well as sat on a wishing chair that took her to surprising places.

“Father, I have found the best treasures in books. They are so inspiring,” the princess told her father.

After hearing the delightful news, the Sultan threw a party and opened the library to public.

Princess Lily still travels to places she had been but this time she will bring back new books and toys for the library.

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Credit images: Evi Shelvia

Personally, I can resonate well with this story. I love to travel but there are still a lot of places that I have yet to visit. I sometimes wander to all the places in my bucket list by reading books, travel magazines as well as visit websites about the countries. Like the princess, I like to buy books from places  that Ivisited and keep it in my own library. But oh how I wish to have a tree library like the one that the princess has.

The writer, Hayati Hanif wrote this story to show how reading enriches the imagination and one does not have to be confined to one place. She has written a number of books for children. This is her first picture book in English.

Evi Shelvia, the illustrator, also a friend of mine, really nailed it. Her imaginations were so wild and out-of-this-world that I myself could not ever think of illustrating. Kudos!

Evi was born in Jakarta. She studied industrial design. In 2009 her family moved to Kuala Lumpur following her husband’s new appointment. The first picture book she illustrated, The Gift of the Ladybug, was an Amazon bestseller on the first day of its launch. This encouraged her to illustrate children’s picture books professionally. She has illustrated for a number of picture books both locally and internationally.

This is a book to help your child discover the magic of reading and the adventures that can be found in the imagination. You can buy online at Oyez Book Store.

Title: The Castle Library
Publisher :Oyez!Books
ISBN :9789670908014
Author :Hayati Hanif
Illustrator :Evi Shelvia

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The Gift Of The Ladybug teaches us to see that we all have special gifts

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I read this book many times over and every time I read it, it makes me cry.

The book tells a story of two horses that dreamed of having a baby colt. A year later, they were blessed with a baby boy. They were so blinded by love that they did not realised that their baby were not a colt. After seeing the doctor, they learned that their baby was a ladybug.

They named him Polkadot and celebrated his qualities, his exquisite wings and bright colours and most of all his lovable personality.

Polkadot

At first they did not know how to care for Polkadot but after seeking advice from the doctor, they learned that he flies, eat other bugs and that he will stay tiny and delicate.

The most devastating news was that he has a short life span.They cried their heart out day and night because their little Polkadot would never live as long as they would.

Polkadot was confused but told his parent that he loves everything about himself and that being a ladybug is all that he knew how to be.

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The horses realised that their son was right and from that moment their sad tears turned to happy tears. They were blessed with the most special ladybug that had ever lived. They cherished every moment of Polkadot’s sweet life.

And they even caught a glimpse of what it is like to fly.

fly

The story was written by Carole McMenamy Amber who found out that her son, TJ, would not see his second birthday. In the Author’s Note, Carole told that the story came to her in a flash during her darkest moments after finding out about her son who was diagnosed with Leigh Syndrome. She wrote it and read it countless times to TJ during Christmas. TJ peacefully passed away in April 2009 at fourteen months due to complications from the syndrome.

This beautiful book was illustrated by my talented friend, Evi Shelvia. Evi captured Carole’s word beautifully and I think it was a fate that they met each other online and created this book.

When I met Evi back in 2012, she showed me The Gift Of The Ladybug and told me that it was her first job illustrating a picture book. She studied Industrial Design, but pursues illustrations because it is her passion. I thought, wow, her work was amazing! We became friend ever since and went together to Bologna last year (2014), where we met Carole for the first time. The meeting was a very emotional one; Evi and Carole hugged for the first time, and knowing the story beforehand, I was all teary-eyed. I got the privilege to also meet Carole’s husband, Troy, and both her parents.

Knowing both the person who wrote and illustrated the book, makes this book very close to my heart.

I totally recommend you to buy this book.

The Gift Of The Ladybug
by Carole McMenamy Amber (Author), Evi Shelvia (Illustrator)
Paperback: 32 pages
Publisher: Ladybug Publishing (January 16, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0615580947
ISBN-13: 978-0615580944
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.1 x 11 inches

Website: http://www.giftoftheladybug.org/

Credit photos: Evi Shelvia

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The Story Blanket: Heart-warming tale of generosity and love

TSB

Written by by Ferida Wolff and Harriet May Savitz, The Story Blanket tells a story about a storyteller, Babba Zarrah, who lives in a tiny village in the snow-covered mountains.

Children love to visit her and settle down on her big, old story blanket and listen to her stories. One day Babba Zarrah notices that Nikolai needs new socks, but she has no yarn but after thinking hard while having tea, she knew what to do; she just has to unravels part of her story blanket and knits him some nice warm socks.

Soon after, the postman found a scarf wrapped around his mailbag. Then the schoolmaster was surprised to find a pair of mittens on the woodpile when he brought in wood for the school stove. Before long, the grocer mysteriously receives a shawl to keep her warm. Meanwhile, the children had to sit closer on the blanket when they came for a story. The blanket became tinier and then one day, there was no blanket left to sit on.

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The villagers discover Babba Zarrah’s secret and decide to give her a surprise: wools in so many colours. She knitted a new story blanket and the children sit happily and comfortably while listening to her telling stories.

But then she noticed a hole in a boy’s sweater. She smiled and knew what to do.

The Story Blanket is a beautiful book not only for children but also adults. We are never too old to learn the beauty of sharing and to respect the wisdom of our elders and that each member of a community is of equal value.

Illustrated by Elena Odriozola, The Story Blanket is one of the best illustrated picture books in which the story, illustrations, page layout, and design all come together to offer a great reading experience.

The Story Blanket
Hardcover – September 1, 2008
by Ferida Wolff (Author), Harriet May Savitz (Author), Elena Odriozola (Illustrator)
Age Range: 4 and up
32 pages
Publisher: Peachtree Publishers (September 1, 2008)
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-1561454662

Photo credit: ELENA ODRIOZOLA

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The Incredible Book Eating Boy warns us not to eat books to be smart

I had this book for many years already. I bought it because I am a fan of Oliver Jeffers and the fact that his picture books are all funny and wonderfully illustrated.

The Incredible Book Eating Boy

The Incredible Book Eating Boy tells a story about Henry who loved books. He loved them so much that he ate them. He started out by eating a single word then he ate the whole sentence until he ate the whole book. The more he ate books, the smarter he became.

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He loved the new him and thought that he will become the most smartest person on earth if he eats more books. He ate more than three books at a time and that was when everything went wrong. He ate too quickly and became ill. All the information was getting all mixed up as he didn’t take the time to digest. When he speaks, words fell out from his mouth and he became not smart. He went to see doctors and they all told him to quit eating book. He did that and slowly began to read. He felt so good and discovered that he loves reading books.

So…, the moral  of the story is: do not try to find shortcut in order to be the smartest person on earth. We must read books; lots of them.

About the book:

Title: The Incredible Book Eating Boy
Published: 2006
Author: Oliver Jeffers
Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers
Awards: Bisto Merit Awards

Locally, you can get this book from Kinokuniya Book Store at Suria KLCC and you can also buy online from Amazon.

Credit source:  http://www.oliverjeffers.com/picture-books/incredible-book-eating-boy

 

 

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How to cope with sadness in J’attends Mamy

jattendsmamy

 

I fell in love with this book when I saw the cover at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2014. Bought it right away.

It was in French and thanks to online free translation, I managed to understand the story.

The story is beautiful and poetic. A little girl’s granny had left the house but she was told that her granny would be home soon. Waiting for granny to return, the little girl spent her time outdoor talking to the trees, ladybug, dragonfly and many more.

mamy16

 

One day, her father explains that her granny is dead, that she is not coming back. The girl eventually understand that new phase of life begins; life without Granny.

I personally love the illustrations which were done in pencil where some elements were tinted red. The illustrations really complement the story and there was a moment, or two, that I broke to tears.

I am so happy that I bought this precious book.

Publication details:
Format: Hardcover
Language: French
ISBN: 9782874261404
Published: 2011
Pages: 32
Publisher: Alice-Jeunesse (Alice Youth Editions)

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A Child’s Garden: A Story of Hope by Michael Foreman

A beautiful picture book written and illustrated by Michael Foreman about a boy living in a war-torn country.

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A Child’s Garden: A Story of Hope tells a story of how a boy cared for a plant that he found in the grey rubble of his ruined home. He cared for the plant and the plant slowly reached and covered a barbed wire fence that was built to not let villagers crossed to the other side; to not let him walked to the hills that he loved so much.

The plant soon grew bigger to become a grapevine. The grapevine brought colours to the village and all kids were happy playing with butterflies and birds. But the happiness was not long when soldiers who ruined the village came back and ruined the grapevine. The boy had a heartbreak. The plant died down on him. Seasons changed from autumn to winter to spring. Then he saw his vine survived; but on the other side of the fence. He was worried but then he saw hope; in a form a girl who watered his vine.

One day, the vine started to grow on his side of the fence. Soon, vines from both sides reached the fence and became entwined. The village became livelier again and the boy was confident that if ever the soldiers come again to destroy, the roots of the vines are deep and seeds spread. Nobody could stop the force of nature.

The boy never stop hoping that one day the fence would disappear so that he will be able to walk again into the hills.

Michael totally nailed it by how he illustrated the book; he adds colour as the vine grows.

As well as illustrating many of his own books, Michael has illustrated over a hundred books written Shakespeare, J. M. Barrie, the Brothers Grimm, Charles Dickens and Oscar Wilde. Michael has travelled widely – to Africa, Japan, the Arctic Circle, China and Malaysia, the Himalayas, Siberia and New Zealand – to research his books.

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Publication details:
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781406325881
Published: 03 May 2010
Price: £6.99
Size: 250 x 230 mm
Pages: 32

Credit reference: 
http://www.walker.co.uk/contributors/Michael-Foreman-2741.aspx
http://www.walker.co.uk/A-Child-s-Garden-9781406325881.aspx

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The Great Paper Caper by Oliver Jeffers Reminds Us Our Responsibility for the Environment

When I first read this book, one thing came to mind: this book definitely will delight not only children (my son loves it) but adults as well – maybe even more so for adults who will understand the clues laid out behind it.

In The Great Paper Capers, Oliver Jeffers teaches us of our responsibility to environment and to respect the nature; we can have fun and all with tree products but we must always make sure to plant them back.

 

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Credit: http://www.oliverjeffers.com/picture-books/the-great-paper-caper

The Great Paper Caper tells a story about branches that disappeared without warning from trees in the forest. The residents of the forest blamed each other but everyone of them had their own solid alibis. So they conducted an investigation; sealed the area, took photographs, made notes and examined every possible clue. But still, they could not find the culprit until one resident came forward with an evident. They analysed the evident and finally found the culprit; a bear. The bear admitted his wrong-doing and said that he was up to the paper air plane competition and had ran out of papers. The judge (a reindeer, by the way) sentenced him to make it up by replacing all the tree that he had cut down. The bear started to plant trees back. At the same time, with the help of the forest residents, the bear managed to enter the paper air plane competition.

My verdict: Although some think that this book was a let down, I certainly have my own illustrator/writer/reader point-of-view. I thought to myself, “How can I not cleverly think of a picture book like that?”

The Great Paper Caper is genuinely witty and charming!

Oliver Jeffers is an award-winning artist, illustrator and writer from Australia, who is now based in Brooklyn, US. Oliver Jeffers is widely known for his picture books for children, published by HarperCollins UK and Penguin US; as below:

  • How to Catch a Star (2004)
  • Lost and Found (2005)
  • The Incredible Book Eating Boy (2006)
  • The Way Back Home (2007)
  • The Great Paper Caper (2008)
  • The Heart and the Bottle (2010)
  • Up and Down (2010)
  • Stuck (2011)
  • The Hueys in The New Jumper” (2012)
  • This Moose Belongs to Me (2012)
  • The Hueys in It Wasn’t Me” (2013)
  • None the Number” (2014)

Jeffers has different styles of illustrating and drawing. His earlier picture books were entirely watercolour, and with the third book, the Incredible Book Eating Boy, he began experimenting with collage. The latest book was created making hundreds of drawings and scribbles on paper and compositing them together in Photoshop. And in The Great Paper Caper, he used the latest style.

The book was produced using FSC product group from well-managed forests and other controlled sources.

The Great Paper Capers
Paperback, 40 pages
Published April 1st 2009 by HarperCollins Children’s Books (first published September 4th 2008)
ISBN 0007182333 (ISBN13: 9780007182336)
Language: English
Suitable age: 8+

More info about Oliver here: http://www.harpercollins.co.uk/cr-100742/oliver-jeffers

 

 

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