Showing posts with label Early Reader. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Early Reader. Show all posts

Monday, June 27, 2022

A Wonderful Series by Christopher Francis

 The Dream Catcher Series by Christopher Francis

Genre: Elementary, Fantasy

The Dream Catcher Series is based on a group of Dream Catchers whose job is to enter the dreams of children and help turn their scary negative dreams into something that is not scary, but fun and positive. There are five books in this series.


The Dream Catcher Rescue Squad: The Fear of Falling 

Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

 In this first story we are introduced to Paisley a young Dream Catcher on her second assignment and Destiny her trainer. How she handles this assignment will determine whether she becomes a member of the Dream Catcher Rescue Squad.  This assignment is a young girl named Abigail who has a fear of falling. When they enter her dream they find her on a rope swing hanging on a thin branch over a high cliff. It is their job to help her change her fear into something positive.  One thing I really liked was at the beginning Paisley tells you the origin of the Dream Catchers and how humans often make dream catchers to hang in their room. I thoroughly enjoyed this story as an adult. I can only imagine how my grandsons are going to enjoy it.



The Dream Catcher Rescue Squad: The Basement
Source: I purchased a copy

Paisley has made it onto the Dream Catcher Rescue Squad. Destiny will continue to be her trainer until she had completed 200 assignments. Then Paisley will get to be a trainer.  The child’s fear in this story is a fear of going to the basement. Paisley learns it isn’t the basement he is afraid of. He is afraid of the toilet in the basement. I felt sorry for Bailey. He couldn’t use the bathroom upstairs because it was being remodeled. He imagined the toilet downstairs as being alive. One thing that was different was that Paisley failed in her mission and had to go back.  I keep trying to figure out how they will solve each kids nightmare but haven’t been successful in solving it before the Dream Catchers do.


The Dream Catcher Rescue Squad: The Fear of being Lost
Source: I purchased a copy

In this story Paisley and Destiny have a new job and her name is Trinity. In this story the first thing we learn is that they have a set up team that does things like open windows for them to slip into the house. Trinity’s nightmare is that she gets lost and can’t find her mommy. It doesn’t help that every time she has the nightmare and wakes her older sister up, her older sister decides to scare her the next day.  Each of these characters who have nightmares must learn a lesson to deal with what scares them. Such a subtle way to teach a valuable lesson.


The Dream Catcher Rescue Squad: Scary Noises
Source: I purchased a copy

Oscar is the Dream Catcher Rescue Squad’s newest job. Oscar is afraid of things during the day and during the night. They enter the dream hoop and shortly thereafter they see Moon Drifters. Moon Drifters steal good dreams and keep them for themselves. The Dream Catchers have got to show Oscar what is making the strange noises and shadows in his house before he wakes up. Who will win this one the Dream Catchers or the Moon Drifters?  This one resonated with me a lot. Growing up in a house that was over 100 years old made falling asleep difficult. I heard every creak and groan and saw shadows everywhere. As an adult I still jump at noises I hear at night and have to fight to not let my imagination run away with me.


The Dream Catcher Rescue Squad: The Fear of School
Source: I purchased a copy

Maslyn is the squad’s newest job. Before I say anything more I have to comment on the way the Dream Catchers get around. They have hair propellers. That is just the coolest thing. Not only that but I just learned that they have the ability to shape shift. Paisley and Destiny notice that Maslyn isn’t in bed yet. They fly around the farm and watch the parents. Dad is busy on his combine and mom is busy taking care of all of the animals. Maslyn’s dad comes in to get Maslyn ready for bed. She doesn’t want to go to sleep because she doesn’t want to go to school the next day. She has to give a presentation and she is scared.  This is a nightmare I often had as a child. It is something that as a teacher I still struggle with. I had no dream catcher squad to help me. I had great administrators who pushed me out of my comfort zone and stood there to support me.


Final Thoughts:

Oh my gosh what a wonderful series. The author has touched on fears not only kids, but also adults have. We have read about the fear of heights, falling, public speaking, scary noises or getting lost. These are perfect for younger elementary students. I will definitely recommend these books to our school media specialist. I believe my grandkids are going to love a copy of these as well.

I have read a multitude of elementary age books by this author and loved them. The illustrations are wonderful.  If you have a middle grade child or young adult you might want to check out his books for older children. Please check back here as I will be reviewing  five more books for the older population. This is definitely an author you need to check out.

Sunday, February 6, 2022

Uprooted by Kandi J. Wyatt

Genre:  Middle Grade, Young Adult, Fantasy
Source:  I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

As always Kandi Wyatt has created a series you have to read. Once I started the book I could not put it down. As I have said before, her world building is so realistic you find yourself along for the ride with the characters.  She has created a world where some lands are in almost total darkness, while some lands have too much light.  This creates a unique problem that kids who have taken science will understand. Without light you can’t grow products to help you life. On the other hand if you have too much light you have the same issue. She has created these worlds and the people who inhabit them with such skill.

Hest, the main character lives in a land where very little grows. He has never seen a tree. Any wood they have must be imported so it is limited.  His parents are dead so he works for a woman who runs the tavern. He has feelings for her daughter and her son is like a little brother to him. He is in charge of the stables and beyond  good with horses. One day a man shows up with a magnificent horse. Hest doesn’t get off to a very good start with him. The next day as the man prepares to leave he finds Hest working his horse. It is through this activity a life changing decision is made for Hest. He sees the man hand a bag of money to the woman who has been like a mother to him since his own died. He believes he has been sold.  He goes with the man.  It is along this trip he learns he is not a slave but something more.

Hest grew as a character and a man throughout this story.  However, knowing this is a new series I know there is so much more to learn about this character. He proves his loyalty not only to the people of the new land he now belongs to but also to a dragon.  Yes!  I knew the master storyteller of dragons would have to place one somewhere. At least I hoped she would.  I can not wait to read the next book and learn more about this new world she has built. I do hope I left enough teasers here to make you order your copy today. You won’t regret it.