Friday, June 22, 2018

Poetry Friday - Sloth Poetry Swap

It’s Friday! And you know what that means: Poetry! Want to know more about Poetry Friday? Click this link right here. And be sure to check out Michelle Kogan's blog to see this week’s round up of wonderful poetry related posts, blogs and goodness. 

Hello and happy Friday! I joined the Poetry Friday community last July and I had just missed the Summer Poetry Swap. So I have been looking forward to participating for nearly a year and I just sent off my 1st poem.

A word to the person who receives mine: I decided to do a concrete poem, and I hand wrote it. I apologize for my tiny chicken scratch! I do have a digital copy for you as well, so just let me know when you get it (I don't want to email early and ruin the fun) and I'll send it your way. I did write my email on the postcard, but I don't even trust my trying-to-be-neat handwriting. :)

I received my first poem of the swap this week and it was from none other than the amazing Tabatha Yeatts. She wrote me a sloth-themed poem and she even put cute sloth tape on the envelope. 

by Tabatha Yeatts
for Rebecca
A sloth has fur so thick it lends
itself to sheltering small friends

Their shaggy selves might turn pea green
when algae is the friend who's seen

 then they match the leaves they eat
and their homey tree retreat.

 Since they create a habitat
for beetles, moths, and things like that,

 though people say they're solitary,
you might want to say "Not very!"

I loved her poem not only because it has to do with sloths, but she also included a little note about the community connection to our Poetry Friday community. She did say, though, that "that makes poetry the sloth and we're the bugs." That image makes me smile. Thank you, Tabatha.

Monday, June 11, 2018

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? - 6/11/18

The weekly post where I recap some of the KidLit books I've been reading. Ocasionally, I'll also talk about some adult fiction books as well.

Be sure to check out Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers to see what other Kidlit readers are reading. Because, you know, we can never have too many books in our TBR piles.


Picture Book 

written by Amy Dixon
illustrated by Karl James Mountford
Sterling Children's Books, 2017

I absolutely love this picture book. It is funny and heartfelt and just great. Both of my kids sat through multiple readings. Mountford's illustrations are fantastic. Highly recommend. 

Middle Grade

written by Jan Eldredge
illustrated by Joseph Kuefler
Balzer + Bray, 2018

Another fantastic read. I love excellent kidlit horror, and this one grabbed me from the get go. Highly recommend. Read my full review here.

Young Adult

by Scott Westerfeld
Simon Pulse, 2014

Scott Westerfeld is always so consistent in his ability to tell a great story. This one was particularly fun because of the NaNoWriMo component. As an aspiring writer, I found myself easily cheering for the writer protagonist. The format of Afterworlds is pretty unique because it is essentially two books/stories wrapped together. Recommend. 

Adult Fiction

by Jonathan Maberry
St. Martin's Press, 2018

I really enjoyed this book. It is creepy and unsettling and wonderful. The story is essentially about what happens when nightmares and reality collide and spill into each other. Jonathan Maberry, with all his amazing skill, has written a book about dreams that actually makes you feel like you are in a waking dream. And it's just fantastic.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

EVANGELINE OF THE BAYOU by Jan Eldredge - Middle Grade Book Review

illustrated by Joseph Kuefler
Balzar + Bray, 2018

At a Glance


supernatural, folklore, horror

Age Range: 

8-12 years old (middle grade)


"Twelve-year-old haunt huntress apprentice Evangeline Clement spends her days and nights studying the ways of folk magic, honing her monster-hunting skills while pursuing local bayou banshees and Johnny revenants."

"But when Evangeline and her grandmother are called to New Orleans to resolve an unusual case, she uncovers a secret that will shake her to the soles of her silver-tipped alligator-skin boots." (source)


  • excellent overall storytelling
  • the mix of folklore was fantastic
  • I liked Evangeline's character and I think kids will relate
  • Just the right amount of creep factor for the age range
  • Werewolves!
  • illustrations were so much fun
  • a twist actually surprised me 

Would I recommend this title:

Most definitely yes!

Full Review

If you have read my blog for any length of time, you'll know that I am always on the lookout for good kid appropriate horror. Evangeline of the Bayou totally fits the bill. I love all the folklore that Jan is able to pull into the novel. Her descriptions actually have me wanting more, in a good way. I want to go on every single hunt with Evangeline and her Grandma to see how each baddie--big and small--is handled. I hope that there will be a sequel.

Joseph Kuefler's black and white illustrations throughout the book are fun and add a bit to the creep factor without going overboard. 

I feel like Evangeline's character is relatable, especially to the target age group. That is what makes the book so great. Growing up, living up to expectations--both internal and external, death, and loss are all artfully intertwined into a story about a young girl fighting monsters. What is not to like?

One thing that I give total props to Jan for is getting me with a few twists. I usually have things all figured out by the end, but she got me.  I tip my hat to you, Madam. 

I would definitely recommend this to anyone who enjoys folklore, spooky stories, or just great storytelling.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Poetry Friday - A Is for Alvarezsaurus

It’s Friday! And you know what that means: Poetry! Want to know more about Poetry Friday? Click this link right here. Be sure to check out Keisha Shepard's blog, Whispers from the Ridgeto see this week’s round up of wonderful poetry related posts, blogs and goodness. 

Hello and Happy Friday! I am back from my fun (and exhausting!) trip to Tennessee. 13.5 hours driving (not including stops) in one day is a lot to do with two little ones in tow. But we made do. It is always great to see family and watch the cousins play together.

Animal Alphabets (an A-Z twitter drawing prompt, but I use it as a poetry prompt) just started fresh with a new theme of extinct animals. A was for Alvarezsaurus (which posted this past Monday) and I had some fun writing an acrostic for it. I meant to do a little sketch to go along with the poem (as it primarily is an illustration prompt) but I ran out of time. I am kind of glad that I did, because now I don't feel so much pressure to accompany each letter with a poem and a drawing. 

(c) Rebecca Herzog 2018

I was really excited when they announced the theme was extinct animals. I was thinking they would pick animals like the passenger pigeon, and the black rhinoceros. Well, next Monday, B is for Boreaspis! Boreaspis was a jawless fish from the Devonian period that had a long pointy snout. You can learn a bit more here. Ha! Piece of cake, right?