Non Fiction Review: The Abolition of Man

The Abolition of Man by C.S. Lewis

The Abolition of Man
by C.S. Lewis
4 out of 5 stars

Lewis shows the implications of the philosophical ideas that emotions are crude and invalid, and only “reason” should dictate our actions. Reason without emotion is unreality, and even if it were true it would only lead to the abolition of mankind. Lewis attacks the issue from several angles, debunking popular arguments that the purest form of reason is our instincts, or that benevolent actions can be found through pursuing “science” as the best moral compass for mankind to follow.

Lewis proves that moral absolutes do exist and that they are universal through all generations and cultures throughout all of time. These moral absolutes appeal to both our reason and our emotions, and you cannot cut them out of a person’s life without destroying that person. There are basic truths that are self-evident and omnipresent in all mankind.

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Fairy Tales and Knowledge

Learning About the Garden with Sleeping Beauty by Štěpánka Sekaninová

Learning About the Garden with Sleeping Beauty
by Štěpánka SekaninováLinh Dao (Illustrator)
4 out of 5 stars

In this retelling of Sleeping Beauty, the princess spends her childhood tending the palace gardens and learning about all the plants and flowers there. But when the evil witch introduces a thorny plant into the garden, the princess pricks her finger and falls into an enchanted slumber.

The reader learns all about flowers, herbs, thorny bushes, fruit trees, and flowering shrubs. There is even a vegetable garden in the palace!

Discovering the Underground with Snow White by Tom Velcovsky

Discovering the Underground with Snow White (Fairytale Encyclopedia, #4)
by Tom VelcovskyJakub Cenkl (Illustrator)
4 out of 5 stars

This book combines the fairy tale retelling of Snow White with information about underground structures, animal burrows, plant root systems, underground rivers, caves, subways, and mines. There is even a section about mythological creatures who traditionally live underground like trolls, gnomes, and dragons.

I love the design of the pages, where the main page has the fairy tale story, and then you can pull out the big folding page to reveal all the information about the garden plants and underground burrows.
The illustrations are all so delicate and graceful! I love the soft art style, and the beautiful colors.
The fairy tale retelling is delightful, and the information about the garden is organized into small paragraphs that make it easy to read.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of both these books from the publisher in exchange for a free and honest review. All the opinions stated here are my own true thoughts, and are not influenced by anyone.

Book Reviews: Children’s Non Fiction

How It Works by Amelia Hepworth

How It Works: Rocket
by Amelia HepworthDavid Semple (Illustrations)
5 out of 5 stars

This cute board book teaches all about how rockets can go to outerspace, how astronauts can land on moon, and how they reenter earth’s atmosphere for a safe return. The die-cut pages are layered to show the inside of the space ship, and all the different stages of space travel.

I love this such interesting little book! This is the perfect way to introduce rockets and space travel to little readers. The illustrations are bright and fun with a little mouse hidden on every page. The design is simple and clear, and the text is easy to understand.

The Stories of Musical Instruments by Štěpánka Sekaninová

The Stories of Musical Instruments
by Štěpánka SekaninováJakub Cenkl
4 out of 5 stars

This book tells the history of musical instruments around the world with short bios about famous musicians and composers. My favorite part is the development of the piano since I am a pianist. There are sections about rock bands, percussion, woodwinds, string orchestras, jazz bands, brass bands, and military bands. There are chapters about beautiful instruments from India, Russia, Scotland, Mongolia, China, Japan, and Africa.

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Non Fiction Review: Take Me Outdoors

Take Me Outdoors by Mary Richards

Take Me Outdoors: A Nature Journal for Young Explorers (Take Me #4)
by Mary Richards
5 out of 5 stars

This journal offers the reader the perfect journal for recording their experiences while in the great outdoors, really noticing things they encounter and the places they see. You can draw a map of your surroundings, sketch a famous garden, and record the different types of plants or animals that you see. There are little tidbits of information about famous outdoor explorers and different famous places around the world.

I loved the colorful pages full of fun activities and journal prompts! Doing these activities is really relaxing and thoughtful. It really forces you to consider a different perspective and see things in a fresh way.

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Non Fiction Book Review: Robot Jesus

Robot Jesus and Three Other Jesuses You Never Knew by Kyle R. Beshears

Robot Jesus and Three Other Jesuses You Never Knew
by Kyle R. Beshears
3 out of 5 stars
This book examines the person of Jesus and what various cults and religions around the world believe about Him. Some believe that Jesus is just another angel or a human prophet. The author presents the true Jesus, and debunks the false beliefs that Jesus is not truly God.
The chapters are designed to equip the reader with knowledge about what different cults believe and how to talk with people and answer their questions about the true nature of the Trinity and the person of Jesus Christ.

DNF at 41%
I think the premise of this book is really good. The execution just wasn’t quite what I was looking for. As far as I could tell, the theology in this book is sound and correct and rooted in canonical Bible Scripture.

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Activity Book Reviews: Paint By Sticker: Outer Space, A Book About Mom, Summer Brain Quest: Pre-K & K

Paint by Sticker Kids by Workman Publishing

Paint by Sticker Kids: Outer Space: Create 10 Pictures One Sticker at a Time! Includes Glow-in-the-Dark Stickers
by Workman Publishing
5 out of 5 stars
This activity book has 10 beautiful designs, and hundreds of stickers in little mosaic shapes! It’s so easy to put the stickers into place, and the finished product looks wonderful. It’s very relaxing and helped me to get creative. You really feel a sense of accomplishment when you finish!

There are information boxes with facts about different planets, rockets, and comets. There is an astronaut, a moon, an observatory with a massive telescope, and even a Mars rover.

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Cookbook Review: How to Grill Vegetables

How to Grill Vegetables by Steven Raichlen

How to Grill Vegetables: Surprising Techniques and Delicious Recipes
by Steven Raichlen (Goodreads Author)
5 out of 5 stars

This book has everything you ever wanted to know about grilling vegetables. There are tips about how to manage the heat in your grill, and different techniques for different types of vegetables. There are even instructions for plank grilling, steam grilling, and smoking.

The recipes look delicious, and include all types of vegetables, breads, pizzas, and quesadillas too. There are colorful photographs of some of the recipes that make it all look so yummy!

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Cookbook Review: Aguas Frescas & Paletas

Aguas Frescas  Paletas by Ericka Sanchez

Aguas Frescas Paletas: Refreshing Mexican Drinks and Frozen Treats, Traditional and Reimagined
by Ericka Sanchez
5 out of 5 stars

This cookbook has recipes for delicious fruit beverages and ice pops made in the traditional Mexican style. There are recipes for cinnamon and clove flavors, as well as lighter fruit flavors like orange, melon, and strawberry. And of course, some of the more spicy and chocolate flavors are deliciously Mexican.

These recipes take me back to my childhood in Mexico! Just reading the book makes my mouth water. Every recipe has a large colorful photograph that shows you the delectable result. I’m so impressed with how attractive this book is!

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Non Fiction Book Review: Book Nerd

Book Nerd by Holly Maguire

Book Nerd
by Holly Maguire
5 out of 5 stars

This book is full of cute illustrations and quotes and factoids about books. It includes a flow chart so you can find out if you should buy that book, and a quiz to match the famous opening lines to the correct book. There are even some bookmarks at the back of the book that you can detach!

I love the cool artwork in this book! Every page is so colorful and fun. This would make the perfect gift for anyone who is obsessed with books!

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Non Fiction Book Review: Top Secret

Top Secret by Crispin Boyer

Top Secret: Spies, Codes, Capers, Gadgets, and Classified Cases Revealed
by Crispin Boyer
5 out of 5 stars

This book has everything you could ever want to know about spies and secret codes. You can learn the history of spies and secret plans, and how to crack ciphers and codes. There are sections about famous spies, gadgets, secret fortresses, and classified information!

I love the design of this book! There are colorful photographs on every page, and the information is divided into boxes that make it easy to read all those factoids and snippets of history.

I especially liked the section about myths vs. facts, that debunks a lot of common misconceptions about secret agents and what they do. And there are cute things like how to come up with your own secret handshake to share with your friends, and how to create your own disguise.

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