Category Archives: Book Reviews

Good Morning, Superman! by Michael Dahl

Good Morning, Superman! by Michael Dahl Good Morning, Superman! by Michael Dahl
Illustrator: Omar Lozano
Published by Capstone on March 1, 2017
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Picture Book
Pages: 32
Format: eARC
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Look, up in the sky! It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s the . . . SUN!

When morning comes, a young boy must prepare for his day, faster than a speeding bullet. Follow along as he leaps tall buildings (jumps out of bed) in a single bound, dons his heroic uniform (his clothes), and faces his greatest weakness (Kryptonite-colored toothpaste). Then it’s up, up, and away to daycare! Includes a morning routine checklist.

Good Morning, Superman! is a really cute book. A little boy is getting ready for the day and everything he does is mirrored by something Superman does. For example, as the little boy gets dressed, Superman reveals his costume. The boy eats his breakfast, gathering his strength, as Superman flies above the buildings, getting ready to fight the bad guys. Even the boy’s sister gets in on the act in her Supergirl costume, handing him his lunchbox, because helpers are super heroes too.

The illustrations are bright and fun, just like the cover. It’s a perfect book for any superhero loving pre-schooler. It may even help with the morning routine.

About Michael Dahl

Michael Dahl is the prolific author of the bestselling Goodnight Baseball picture book and more than 200 other books for children and young adults. He has won the AEP Distinguished Achievement Award three times for his nonfiction, a Teacher’s Choice award from Learning magazine, and a Seal of Excellence from the Creative Child Awards. And he has won awards for his board books for the earliest learners, Duck Goes Potty and Bear Says “Thank You!” Dahl has written and edited numerous graphic novels for younger readers, authored the Library of Doom adventure series, the Dragonblood books, Trollhunters, and the Hocus Pocus Hotel mystery/comedy series. Dahl has spoken at schools, libraries, and conferences across the US and the UK, including ALA, AASL, IRA, and Renaissance Learning. He currently lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota in a haunted house.
He also writes under aliases Chris Carey, Rick Thomas, and Mark Ziegler.

Baseball Faith by Rob Maaddi

Baseball Faith by Rob Maaddi Baseball Faith: 52 MLB Stars Reflect on Their Faith by Rob Maaddi
Published by Shiloh Run Press on March 1, 2017
Source: Publisher
Genres: Devotional, Christian Life
Pages: 224
Format: Paperback
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Winning the World Series may be the ultimate prize for most MLB players, but a relationship with Jesus Christ is No. 1 for many diamond stars, including:
Hall of Famer John Smoltz
Three-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw
MVP Albert Pujols
All-Star Mariano Rivera
And dozens more.

Baseball Faith will inspire you in your faith journey as 52 MLB players--past and present--share their stories and how they are chasing the success that only comes from being God's man and following His plan. These men are committed to living their lives with eternity in mind. Empowered by God, they are looking beyond the competition to a larger goal: following God's game plan for their lives as team players, as husbands, fathers, sons, and then using their influence to point others toward Him.

Baseball season is just around the bend, and I’m a baseball fan, as is my husband, so Baseball Faith grabbed my attention. It’s a good book, a nice devotional for baseball fans, especially maybe teenage boys who are into the sport.

The setup is well done. Each player’s piece starts with a scripture quote and is followed by the player’s thoughts on why that scripture is important to him or about how faith and the Bible are important in his life. Each devotion can be read in less than 2 minutes. The following two pages contain some of the player’s stats and an interesting fact, like “McCutchen cut his dreadlocks before the 2015 season, and proceeds from the sale of his hair benefited Pirates Charities.” Yeah, we’re Pirates fans around here. And have been for ages, even when we were absolutely terrible. I was glad to see our McCutchen in the book.

The devotions are short and simple. I like that many of the players mention the importance of Bible study groups, attending church, and reading the Bible. Some talk about God always being with them, even when the game is tough, and of being Him being more important than baseball. Some talk about how being a baseball player makes being a good role model even more important. Wilson Ramos (Tampa Bay Rays) talks about the verse that gave him strength when he was kidnapped in Venezuela. Each has his own story, his own background, and each is inspiring.

Definitely a good read for the baseball fan in your life. The devotions are topics that are easy to relate to and written so that everyone can understand. They don’t use obscure terms or phrases that only church-goers would understand. It’s not earth-shattering, but it’s nice to see these people who we usually only see on tv sharing their faith.

About Rob Maaddi

Rob Maaddi has been a Philadelphia sports writer for The Associated Press since 2000. He’s covered the Super Bowl, World Series, NBA Finals, Stanley Cup Finals, and numerous major sporting events throughout his career. Rob has co-authored three children’s sports books and has written a biography on Mike Schmidt. A devoted Christian, Rob strives every day to make a difference and be a blessing. Rob is a missionary athlete with the Deacons Prison Ministry softball team. He visits inmates, shares his testimony, and preaches about Jesus Christ.
Rob, his wife, Remy, and their twin girls, Alexia and Melina, reside in South Jersey.

A Fistful of Divas by Camille LaGuire

A Fistful of Divas by Camille LaGuire A Fistful of Divas by Camille LaGuire
Series: Mick and Casey McKee
Published by the author on August 26, 2013
Source: Purchased
Genres: Mystery, Western, Short Story
Pages: 32
Format: eBook
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Young gunslinger detectives, Mick and Casey McKee, are eager to hear some opera singing. But when somebody takes a shot at some visiting divas, the concert is off. The ladies won't sing until Mick and Casey solve a case of blackmail and murder.

So I love Mick and Casey McKee. I wish there were more stories in the series. They are a gunslingers in the old west, a young married couple. And I do mean young. She’s maybe 17. He’s the talker, she’s the shooter and they make a great pair. This time around, the couple want to see singing at the local opera house. There’s a cute story why, involving Casey’s dad. Anyway, with these two nothing is ever simple. Just as they walk in to see who is warming up, there’s a shot, apparently aimed at one of the women on stage. If the ladies are going to feel safe enough to perform, Mick and Casey need to figure what’s going on and stop it.

The mystery was good, for a short story. The actual shooter’s identity is quickly established, but who hired him and why is the question. There are a couple clues and a nice, small list of suspects.

Like I said, I really enjoy the McKees. You get a good feeling for their relationship here. It’s not quite as good as the only full-length mystery in the series, Have Gun, Will Play, but it’s definitely worth the quick read.

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