Friday, November 26, 2021

Check Out These Recent Graphic Novels and Beginner and Middle-Grade Chapter Books from Amulet Books, an Imprint of Abrams - Perfect Stocking Stuffers! (Review)

 Disclosure: I was sent a review copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All views shared are mine and mine alone.

Happy Thanksgiving!  Hope your turkey day was filled with tasty food, some relaxation time, and lots of laughs and memories made with family and friends.  Now, you have to switch gears and start getting serious about your holiday shopping and putting the tree up, if you haven't already.  With many stores closed today, many people are turning to online shopping and Pre- Black Friday deals to be had online.  As you settle in tonight to do a little holiday shopping, now that the house is clean and everyone is tucked into bed, I wanted to share a handful of new and recent graphic and chapter books for kids of all ages from Amulet Books, that you can score at discounted and reasonable prices from Amazon fight now -- some with additional clip a coupons for an even better price on hardcovers.  If your kids like Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Rowley Jefferson's books, and beginner chapter books with lots of illustrations, then do I have the perfect books for them...check them out now!!! :-)

Buy now in hardcover from Amazon for only $7.49

More About this Book:

"In Big Shot, book 16 of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series from #1 international bestselling author Jeff Kinney, Greg Heffley and sports just don’t mix.

After a disastrous field day competition at school, Greg decides that when it comes to his athletic career, he’s officially retired. But after his mom urges him to give sports one more chance, he reluctantly agrees to sign up for basketball.

Tryouts are a mess, and Greg is sure he won’t make the cut. But he unexpectedly lands a spot on the worst team.

As Greg and his new teammates start the season, their chances of winning even a single game look slim. But in sports, anything can happen. When everything is on the line and the ball is in Greg’s hands, will he rise to the occasion? Or will he blow his big shot?

See the Wimpy Kid World in a whole new way with the help of Greg Heffley’s best friend in the instant #1 bestsellers Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson’s Journal, Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Adventure, and Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Spooky Stories!"

My Thoughts:

My youngest daughter loves all things Diary of a Wimpy Kid. She first got hooked on the books after seeing one of the movies with friends over a virtual movie night during Covid. Since then, she has read almost all the books in the chapter book series.  While she usually goes in order with books in a series, she has been eagerly awaiting the release of the book, and couldn't wait to get through books 14-15, and skipped ahead to read this one.  In one's night time, she turned out this book, and as she closed the book, she couldn't hold in the excitement of completing the book before coming downstairs to tell me all about it, and her favorite illustrations.  Even though she is not big into sports, she said this book really was funny and easy to follow along for the non-sporty readers.  She was laughing all the way through the book, and didn't want to stop until she reached the end, as she had to see how it finished. And, once she did, she said it was the perfect ending -- don't worry I will not be sharing an spoilers. 

Now that my daughter is done reading this book, she is re-reading the next book I will be sharing with you, which she read at Halloween, to get into the spirit she said with Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Spooky Stories!. 


Buy now in hardcover from Amazon for only $6.62

More About this Book:

"An instant #1 New York Times bestseller! 

Scare yourself silly with Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Spooky Stories by Jeff Kinney, the #1 international bestselling author of Diary of a Wimpy Kid!

Grab a flashlight, crawl under the covers, and dive into the twisted, unexpectedly hilarious world of Rowley Jefferson’s imagination. You’ll meet zombies, vampires, ghosts, and much more in these comically terrifying tales.

Rowley’s spooky stories might leave you laughing, but beware—you could end up sleeping with the lights on!

And don’t miss Rowley Jefferson’s first two awesome friendly books, the instant #1 bestsellers Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson’s Journal and Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Adventure!"

My Thoughts:

If your kids read Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, then they also probably read Rowley Jefferson's books, too.  This book series is based on Greg's best friend, Rowley. In this particular book, we get to see inside his very creative imagination which includes zombies, vampires and ghosts, and other things that go bump in the night.  Just like the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, this one is also chock full of laugh out loud illustrations that bring the spooky tales to life.  My daughter really liked "The Changing" as she said it was fun to read and see Rowley change into a werewolf, and his parents were also werewolves.  She said she read this particular over and over again as she couldn't get enough of it.

This was another of the Jeff Kinney books that she started to read and couldn't put it down until the last page was read.  It was that good. Plus, with all the illustrations in the book, it was a quick read -- perfect for reluctant readers.



Buy now in hardcover from Amazon for only $10.55

More About this Book:

"A hilarious and wacky graphic novel for the youngest readers about navigating friendships—and the playground

The slide. The swings. The monkey bars. The seesaw.

Tuna, Noodle, and Margo each head for their favorite spots, like always. But today, there is a bear on the slide, and—gasp!—they won’t come down.

Together, this ragtag group of pals must tackle the playground, navigate friendships old and new, make it through bizarre mishaps, and sometimes get a little . . . kooky.

Featuring comic-style illustrations full of color, zany humor, and memorable characters, this young graphic novel reminds new readers that any day spent with friends is a great day—and a learning experience!"

My Thoughts:

Beginner readers and fans of graphic novels will love this book, which is another laugh out loud book. The book is set up as comic style with lots of full color illustrations.  The characters are fun and playful, and the story is easy to follow along.  All about friendship and learning together, this book will delight young beginner chapter book and graphic novel readers.  With limited words on each page, it, too, is another quick read.  You'll find your kids lingering on each page, though, to take in all the details of the illustrations, which really do bring the story and characters to life.


More About this Book:

"The second book in Disney's Spooky Zone series, spooky middle-grade mysteries starring Disney’s world-famous troublemaking triplets, Huey, Dewey, and Louie

After solving a soccer-related, curse-driven mystery in Germany, Huey, Dewey, and Louie—the world-famous nephews of Donald Duck—find themselves on a hot new case when they travel back to France. 

Written by Tommy Greenwald and featuring two-color illustrations throughout, the Duckscares series is perfect for young mystery fans."

My Thoughts:

I have no idea that there was a middle-grade mysteries series featuring the nephews of Donald Duck, Huey, Dewey, and Louie.  But, as soon as my girls saw the book arrive in the mail, they couldn't wait to read it, and said they already right the first book after borrowing it from the library.  They had been waiting for this second book in the series to release, and now could travel to France with the boys and see how they work together to save the day and their favorite bakery. Don't worry, no spoilers...just know this book is full of excitement and spooks (well not really, but still fun to read) and a mystery you need to help unravel.  Young chapter book readers and fans of mysteries will eat this book right up. And, come on, who doesn't love a book featuring some of our beloved Disney characters. I even found myself reading it after the girls were done to see what I was missing, and have to say it really is a cute book, full of fun and excitement.  Now, the girls have to wait to book 3, which they hope comes out soon.


More About this Book:

"This new Smurfs comic series focuses on emotional learning, social responsibility, and overall Smurf-iness. 

Featuring three complete stories in each volume, these full-color graphic novels are full of kid-friendly humor and tell all-new, action-packed adventures. A great option for newly independent readers, comics fans, and reluctant readers!"

My Thoughts:

If a book about Huey, Dewey, and Louie wasn't enough to get your feeling nostalgic about favorite cartoons and movies, then "We are the Smurfs: Welcome to Our Village," will definitely have your reminiscing about the good old days.  And, now you can share these lovable blue people with your kids in this 3 stories in one graphic novel, perfect for beginner chapter book readers and fans of graphic novels.  As you can see in the shared pictures above, this book is full of fun full color illustrations of the Smurfs -- and they always seem to be getting into trouble.  My girls really enjoyed this graphic novel and the three stories, and I couldn't wait for them to be done with the book, so that I, too, could read it.  If only they came out with books like this when I was young -- I would have definitely bought and read over and over again.  My girls are now hooked on the Smurfs and watching videos on YouTube from the 80's, and can't wait for more books to release like this one with three stories in one book.  


More About this Book:

"A spin-off chapter book series in the world of the Flytrap Files, from New York Times bestselling author Tom Angleberger!

After working as a nanny for the power hungry ShrubBaby (a deceivingly adorable baby shrub), DJ Funkyfoot—a chihuahua who dreams of being a butler—has finally landed his dream job. A real actual butler gig! 

He’s been hired to butle for President Horse on the day that the president needs to sign a peace treaty with the Queen of Wingland. But the president doesn’t feel like it. All he wants to do is kick back, relax, and play some mini-golf. It’s up to DJ Funkyfoot to get the president through his mini-golf game quickly so he can get the treaty signed on time to stop the war and save the day!

The books will take place in the same world as Inspector Flytrap and Didi Dodo but do not require knowledge of the world."

My Thoughts:

If you kids love the Flytrap Files chapter book series, then they will like this spin off.  Even if they haven't read the series, this new series will still delight them, and get them hooked.  You don't need previous knowledge of the Flytrap Files or world, which my girls didn't have as they hadn't read the books, and they still were able to follow along and said it was such a fun book. The story was cute, and the orange and black illustrations had them lingering on each page to take in all the details.  My girls now want to get their hands of the Flytrap Files and Didi Dodo books to read and see what they missed out.  When they told their friends about this new book series, some of their friends mentioned the other two books and said they loved reading them.  My girls plan to swap this book out with the others, so their friends can read this new book, and they can get their Flytrap Files and Didi Dodo fix, while they wait for another book to drop in the series.

Hopefully with handful of recent Amulet Books releases I mentioned above, you will be able to get a jump start on your holiday shopping for your kids, while saving some money as the books are discounted and/or with additional coupons to clip from Amazon.  You can learn more about these and other children's books from Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams by visiting  Happy shopping! :-)

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