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AsapSCIENCE: answers to the world's weirdest questions, most persistent rumours, and unexplained phenomena
AsapSCIENCE: answers to the world's weirdest questions, most persistent rumours, and unexplained phenomena
Price: £6.71

5.0 out of 5 stars Innovative combination of humor and science that has conquered the world, 30 Aug. 2015
‘AsapSCIENCE’ written by AsapSCIENCE YouTube channel founders Mitchell Moffit and Greg Brown starting from its entertaining title up to the last paragraph manage to cheer you up and make you laugh, while along the way you will also learn something.

AsapSCIENCE YouTube channel designed by these two Canadians became worldwide known with their whiteboard videos that with the use of science explain how something is possible or give answer to some question that at first glance might seem simple, though becomes difficult to explain in brief. The authors explained they wanted to combine pop culture with science and given their family and friends were highly interested for science, the videos they started to produce were great innovative combination that has conquered the world.

In some interview I read those two focused on the book for more than a year that was hard to carry out given the success of their videos. But in the end, more than half of cases they solved in paper version are exclusive material and don’t appear on their website.

So inside you will find great topics such as “Is there a hiccup cure?”, “Does shaving make your hair grow thicker?”, “Does being cold make you sick?” along with some that are completely wacky like “Could a zombie apocalypse happen?”, “Will dancing get you laid?” or “Why do we hate photos of ourselves?”

Overall, ‘AsapSCIENCE’ is a work that succeeds to convey innovation and imagination of this duo from the virtual world into a paper one, and from its start to the very end with its style - a combination of humor and scientific facts - manages to entertain the reader not allowing to be put aside.


[ The Buried Giant Ishiguro, Kazuo ( Author ) ] { Hardcover } 2015
[ The Buried Giant Ishiguro, Kazuo ( Author ) ] { Hardcover } 2015
by Kazuo Ishiguro
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars What a comeback for this great master of written word!, 30 Aug. 2015
'The Buried Giant' written by Kazuo Ishiguro is another masterpiece this great British writer has created after he was absent on the literary scene for long ten years.

To speak about the story and in same time not discover at least a fraction of unusual plot that only this author can deliver is something hard to do - but even if I do not want to spoil the pleasure, I'll try.

The plot is set in the Britain at the time of King Arthur and revolves around five characters - an elderly couple who depart from their villages in search of their son, an aging King Arthur knight whose life mission seems would never finish, a boy sentenced to death due to bizarre circumstances who ran away and courageous Saxon fighter who came from far away, who is anything but what at first appears. Their stories will slowly intertwine, in this country that for some strange reason became covered with fog of forgetfulness, and only the final pages will help the reader to understand how their destinies are linked, not only the present that due to strange circumstances they share...

The novel starts with the picture of elderly Britons couple, Axl and Beatrice, and through the story of their life in the village where these two are not welcomed anymore, illustrated is the situation in which is Britain just after the end of the brutal British Saxon wars. Although for some reason they cannot remember almost nothing from their past, they remember having a son who lives in a nearby village and decide to go to him in order to feel at least a little happier and more respected than in the village where they live now.

But once they will leave the village, soon some unusual situations will start happening and in their lives will slowly enter other characters, while the Britain of the 6th century is revealed to the reader with all the mysticism, beauty and cruelty - offering a story that transcends the boundaries of fantasy, but always remains beautiful and full of life wisdom.

Though there are moments of sadness, moments of brutality and mindless violence, 'The Buried Giant' is a wonderful story about the power of love and devotion, but also the saga of revenge and war, things that (unfortunately) make us humans.

So if you want to be introduced with the author whose each and every previous work was masterpiece in itself, this novel after a long ten-year break is right choice - Kazuo Ishiguro with 'The Buried Giant' again wrote the book whose layers with each reading will be additionally discovered.


Peppa Pig: Peppa Goes Swimming
Peppa Pig: Peppa Goes Swimming
by LADYBIRDBOOKS
Edition: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars Another typical title from the series, 30 Aug. 2015
‘Peppa Goes Swimming’ is the another installment in ‘Peppa Pig’ series of books for the youngest readers based on awarded children TV show, that was broadcasted for the first time 11 years ago.

For those loyal followers of Peppa series the latest installment will bring another typical story about beloved Pig character that this time, together with her family, goes at the swimming pool, in order to enjoy in some water activities and have a great time. Given this is George’s first time at the pool, he will be a bit afraid of getting in the water, but with help of Daddy and Mummy Pig George will be eventually convinced.

And so will begin an exciting and unforgivable visit to the swimming pool…

‘Peppa Pig’ series reminds me a bit to ‘Pinkalicious’ series – both of those given being so long with the public split the parents in two camps - those that adore and can be considered loyal fans and the other ones that just cannot stand these characters. In that sense, the latest book in Peppa series is not different from all the other previously released, made in the similar manner combining distinctive bright-colored digital illustrations without lot of details together with easy-to-read sentence or two on each spread.

What additionally connects both series is lack of some wise lesson to be conveyed towards youngest what usually characterize books for children, limiting its story on description of some special event such as the first visit to the pool that is the subject of this booklet.

However, for those that never have seen these picture books and are unfamiliar with the TV show as well, ‘Peppa Pig’ titles are the suitable picture books for children 3- 4 years old that with its simple drawings and text will be fun to read.

Therefore, if you consider your child as Peppa’s fan, this is another typical title from the series, though if you think about something new for your child(ren) my recommendation would be to look for something else because the choice for readers that age is very big.


Have You Seen My Monster? by Steve Light (7-May-2015) Hardcover
Have You Seen My Monster? by Steve Light (7-May-2015) Hardcover
by Steve Light
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Unusual and innovative children book that enables children to learn through play, 27 Aug. 2015
‘Have You Seen My Monster?’ written and illustrated by Steve Light is kind of sequel to author’s previously released ‘Have You Seen My Dragon?’, managing to once again surprise and impress with the simplicity and intelligence of his work.

There are numerous books for children that are introducing the usual shapes such as triangles, circles or square to children. On the other hand, at least I didn’t hear about any that enable children to learn what is heptagon, curvilinear triangle, quatrefoil or nonagon. Just that and much more, Steve Light is doing with his unusually imaginative and equally educational picture book.

On the first spread, young reader is going to meet charming little girl that asks parents have they seen her monster. Given the parents are not sure where her furry friend is hiding, in the pages that follow we are going to accompany this little girl through a carnival fair while trying to found her lost monster.

In same time, the children will have chance to become familiar with twenty different and unusual shapes that are scattered all around the fair as appropriate attractions.

And young readers don’t have to be afraid, a monster eventually will be found…

With ‘Have You Seen My Monster?’ Steve Light manages to present how important is great idea when it comes to children books. His pen and ink black&white artwork except for the colored shapes, though nice is not something spectacular, but the presentation in which the young reader learns little from each page, even though not aware of it, is great display of innovation in the world of children books, something that makes them so special and loved even by adult readers.

Also, the story offers additional hide-and-seek aspect while we follow page by page how monster exceptionally well hides in the background, no matter how hard the young girl is trying to find it.

‘Have You Seen My Monster?’ is a must-read for existing Steve Light fans, while all others will certainly enjoy this unusual and innovative children book made in an original way that except entertainment provide children with the opportunity to learn a lot through play.

Taking into account the aforementioned, if you search for a picture book that enables the child to learn about the exciting world of mathematics, this is certainly a choice worth considering.


Wild About Us! by Beaumont, Karen (2015) Hardcover
Wild About Us! by Beaumont, Karen (2015) Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Celebrates the characteristics that make us different, 27 Aug. 2015
‘Wild About Us!‘, written by Karen Beaumont and illustrated by Janet Stevens, brings an educational, humorous and nicely illustrated story for young readers that talks about differences, celebrate the characteristics that make animals and people different one from the other, helping them to stand out in their particular way.

Beaumont introduces reader to a ZOO full of humorous animals - Warty Warthog, Crocodile, Kangaroo and Leopard - each of them special in its own different way. And while the kids will enjoy their adventures we cannot help but wonder would not it be boring if we all (in the ZOO and in the world) are looking the same?

‘Wild About Us!‘ is another work of Karen Beaumont, an imaginative story teller who using her simple idea combined with wonderful artwork made by skilled artist, once again delivered a picture book that kids will enjoy, while even the adults can learn a lot. Besides nicely drawn characters and educational story, the authors put main focus on the acceptance of differences that sometimes can be challenging, even for the adults.

Besides charming story written in rhymes that brought such a great lesson, ‘Wild About Us!‘ is complemented with the beautiful Janet Stevens illustrations who used the watercolor and colored pencil to present us the world of ZOO full of differences. Sometimes can be challenging for the author and artist to think the same, but this book is a great example how good the joint work can be for the benefit of young readers who will enjoy great text and beautiful artwork.

Therefore, taking into account the educational story and beautiful artwork this book provided, ‘Wild About Us!‘ is picture book that can be recommended for children and their parents to enjoy together.


[(Kl: A History of the Nazi Concentration Camps)] [Author: Nikolaus Wachsmann] published on (April, 2015)
[(Kl: A History of the Nazi Concentration Camps)] [Author: Nikolaus Wachsmann] published on (April, 2015)
by Nikolaus Wachsmann
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Well researched book, 27 Aug. 2015
'KL’ written by Modern European History Professor Nikolaus Wachsmann, is the most seriously made book about the Nazi concentration camps that presents the results of author to deliver the whole history of the Nazi concentration camps from their creation in 1933 through the bloody period of 12 years until their final collapse in the spring of 1945.

Given that this year we are celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Allied liberation of the concentration camps, this is a great opportunity for readers to become familiar with the horrors of this monstrous fabrication Nazi Germany invented and carried it out.

The author did a great job to find and collect all available historical data and prepare a concise overview of 12 years that can be rightly considered as the greatest shame of humanity, a real tragedy for humans as the most intelligent life form on the planet. Equally of those that have conducted such organized mass killing, but as well of those that knew and did not manage to stop it for so long.

Inside the covers a reader will learn about all the concentration camps and the horrible experiments and killings that were conducted within barbed-wire fence on all those that thought differently or simply were different with their birth.

The book is divided into 12 chapters that cover chronologically development of the camps from the early ones that were used for the political opponents to the final stage of war camps in which Holocaust and mass murders were conducted, as well discussing all the aspects of this perfectly conceived mechanism for the destruction of millions of people.

Wachsmann also added a shocking appendix in which numbers are shown – one that shows the daily inmate numbers in the SS concentration camps and prisoner deaths that were conducted there, as well as SS ranks with Army Equivalents for the better understanding.

Behind writing this book lies an extensive author’s research, therefore it is not surprising that list of sources used for its writing lasts for almost 50 pages making this book an excellent reference point for subject of Nazi concentration camps.

The names of places such as Auschwitz, Treblinka, Bergen-Belsen, Chelmno, Buchenwald, Dachau, Mauthausen, Sobibor and many others in Poland and German, as well as their victims must never be forgotten, in order such tragedy of the human race to never happen again.

'KL’, this great book of history certainly will be helpful to learn and to remember, therefore I can highly recommend its reading not only for the historians, but also to all those that does not know much about this most shameful part of human history.


By Mouse and Frog Hardcover April 14, 2015
By Mouse and Frog Hardcover April 14, 2015
by Illustrator) Deborah Freedman (Author
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Teaches about the value of cooperation and mutual respect, 26 Aug. 2015
‘By Mouse and Frog’ made by Deborah Freedman is a new book for children that through the story of two main characters writing a story emphasizes the importance of cooperation, mutual respect and joint work.

At the beginning of this story, a young reader will be introduced to the two main characters – Mouse and Frog. Mouse will wake up in the morning eager to start working on the new story that has a mouse as a leading character. But Frog has some other ideas and wants to add some new motives to the story, such as ice cream, a cake and a king.

Though Mouse will try to fix and fit in every wild idea Frog came up with, eventually she could not stand it anymore and yells that Frog is not listening at all. They will try to start a story from the scratch using the Mouse initial idea that will make Frog miserable. In the end Mouse will realize that if they cooperate and respect each other there is possibility to combine both her quiet ideas and Frog’s wacky ones…

‘By Mouse and Frog’ is the third book for children Deborah Freedman made and in my opinion her best work so far. With her profound story, the author speaks about joint work in literature and art in general, what is particularly interesting because such joint work is very often the case in the world of children's books.

She emphasizes that such cooperation is possible as long as both parties are willing to listen each other and seek compromises, rather than imposing own ideas as the only good ones. Writing is a creative thing and it is often difficult to reconcile opposing views, but taking into account the arguments of both parties and combining of different motives will likely lead to higher quality of the final work.

Using author’s trademark watercolor technique combined with pencil, Freedman again delivers her work in a nice visual style using the bright colors, that makes ‘By Mouse and Frog’ besides educational also pleasant to the eye.

Therefore Deborah Freedman with her latest book again managed to deliver both beautiful and educating title for children 3-5 years old that teaches about the value of cooperation and mutual respect, something that is important for children to learn as soon as possible.


The Grasshopper & the Ants by Pinkney, Jerry (2015) Hardcover
The Grasshopper & the Ants by Pinkney, Jerry (2015) Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Another gem from many times awarded author, 26 Aug. 2015
‘The Grasshopper & the Ants’ made by many times awarded author and illustrator for children Jerry Pinkney, brings an, in many ways, educational story for the youngest readers that resembles a classic Aesop’s fable.

The main character a young reader will meet on the pages of the book – a playful grasshopper - spends time playing and jumping wondering why busy ants do not follow his example while seasons are passing by. But when the weather will change, and the cold will start to reign, the grasshopper will begin to understand the price and value of the ants efforts…

For anyone at least a little acquainted in the world of picture books and children's authors, the name of Jerry Pinkney will be immediately familiar – list of awards he received during his long and fruitful career would be too big for this review: 2010 Caldecott Medal for ‘The Lion & the Mouse’, Caldecott Honors, Coretta Scott King Awards, New York Times Best Illustrated Awards, Gold and Silver medals from the Society of Illustrators, and many more.

I read many books Pinkney beautifully made for children – ‘The Little Red Hen’, ‘The Tortoise & the Hare’ and ‘The Lion and the Mouse’ are the best ones at least in my opinion - and always his works are distinguished with the educational themes where his stories are shown through the main animal characters.

With his latest book the author again did excellently, delivering well-made, educational and charming children book with a great lesson – “Don't put off for tomorrow what you can do today”.

Again Pinkney amazes with beautiful multicolored and detailed artwork made using the rich bright colors in combination with a wise story that overall resulted with a must-have book for the old and new fans of Pinkney’s work.

Therefore, one can only hope that this author for a long time will continue to inspire us with such beautiful picture books because of which we want to always remain children.


The Skunk by Mac Barnett (14-Apr-2015) Hardcover
The Skunk by Mac Barnett (14-Apr-2015) Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars In addition to lot of fun and laughter, offers space for conversation with children, 26 Aug. 2015
‘The Skunk’ written by Mac Barnett and charmingly illustrated by Patrick McDonnell is a humorous story for preschool children that can be understood in many ways, but each reader will laugh and entertain in the same amount - a lot.

The authors introduce us to a tuxedo dressed man who discovers a small skunk sitting on his doorstep. As he tries to make his way to town, the skunk will remain close on his heels following him. Whatever man does, the skunk does too. He speeds up, he slows down, taking many turns, but without help - the man just cannot get rid of the skunk.

Finally when the man managed to run away, buying a new house in a different part of the city, he will start celebrating with a great party. But suddenly the man starts asking himself why initially little skunk started following him?

And then the roles will be reversed, the man from pursued will become the pursuer, and to the very end remains to be seen will the reader discover why the skunk in the first place started to pursue this man…

‘The Skunk’ is a nicely made book in a manner of comics, both when it comes to its style, humor and artwork, providing more explanations from the seemingly simple spreads and thus creating opportunity to talk with children after book will be read. On each spread there is only a sentence or two that are short, nicely showing the paranoia and desire to escape by the main character, and then complete reversal when the roles of main characters are reversed.

Speaking about the artwork, as aforementioned, the illustrations are done in style of comics, with expressive body language and humor that is typical for this type of literature. Patrick McDonnell who previously worked on many awarded books for children, in this book used pen and ink technique managing to show with it many small charming details that will grab reader’s attention in every reading.

Overall, combining its humorous story and the artwork done in comics style, ‘The Skunk’ is interesting and inspiriting children book that in addition to lot of fun and laughter, offers plenty of space for conversation with children.


[(What's Math Got to Do with It?: How Teachers and Parents Can Transform Mathematics Learning and Inspire Success)] [Author: Jo Boaler] published on (March, 2015)
[(What's Math Got to Do with It?: How Teachers and Parents Can Transform Mathematics Learning and Inspire Success)] [Author: Jo Boaler] published on (March, 2015)
by Jo Boaler
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars Completely revised edition valuable for teachers and parents having problem with mathematics, 25 Aug. 2015
‘What's Math Got to Do with It?’ written by Jo Boaler is at the same time a continuation and an expansion of her six years old work that had the same title, but rather a different subheading – ‘Helping Children Learn to Love Their Least Favorite Subject--and Why It's Important for America’.

Jo Boaler, Professor of Mathematics from UK teaches at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, though she became known because of her part in promotion of mathematics education reform that started some time ago. Not only she wrote several books that speak about mathematics subject, but also she founded a non-profit organization named Youcubed that helps parents and mathematics educators working with younger children.

Boaler drew public attention precisely with the aforementioned first edition of ‘What's Math Got to Do with It?’ book back in 2009 with which she tried to take off the stigma from mathematics as the least favorite or rather said, the most hated school subject. The critics were somehow divided, on the one hand her work well-promoted and encouraged the problem solving in project-like environment with grouped students that make their work easier and more productive, while on the other hand there were reasonable complaints Boaler offered a lot of criticism, while not providing equal number of solutions and directions to be followed.

So it was interesting to see how much of the original content the author decided to change during the past six years, or whether and to what extent her thinking has changed in recent period. The answer lies in the first sentence of this review –starting from the subheading Boaler decided to be more affirmative, more positive and provide solutions for teachers and parents that can help them transforming mathematics learning and as result, inspire children success.

I did quick comparison between two editions and at first glance it can be seen to what extent Boaler updated the new edition with new research in the field of pedagogical strategies, understanding of high quality math tasks, ways of promotion understanding and messages that need to be conveyed to students.

In that way she emphasized the new ideas on mathematics learning and student mindsets that can help in transformation of students experiences with mathematics.

So whether you loved the previous book written by Jo Boaler or you (justified or less justified) somewhat criticized her, with this release it seems she managed to go all the way – making her new ‘What's Math Got to Do with It?’ book a valuable tool for teachers and parents in order to mathematics cease to be subject for the chosen ones.


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