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These people don't just meet my highest expectations; they exceed them. I think you'll agree when you read their work.
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Age guidelines are a ROUGH measure for younger children. A book at a 1st grade reading level can be read TO a 2 year old!
Teen and Young Adult
P.J. Rooks (PJR) is mom to little Claire. Thus, she's our specialist in books for young children. Here's P.J.'s bio.
P.J. has a special interest in books that promote emotional and intellectual intelligence and awareness. And by the way: P.J. only reviews books that she recommends!
Suzanne Holland (SH) has been a kindergarten teacher for nine years, indulging her love of writing with humorous (but informational!) web updates for the moms and dads of her students.
Her kids' books specialty is younger children, but she also brings us a love of elementary books, especially biographies, history, mysteries, and Christian, as well as science and nature. You'll almost sense the children gathered on the floor around her feet as you read her children's book reviews!
Read Suzanne Holland's bio.
Sarah Denslow (SD) is a recent college graduate (Ivy League! Honors degree in English Literature!) who now teaches preschool. She enjoys fantasy/magical books aimed at older kids, and of course picture books.
When reading her children's book reviews, know that she prefers books that encourage good values and behavior. Sarah also does a fair amount of writing for herself. Ask her about her 60 page paper on Beowulf!
Read Sarah Denslow's bio.
Justine Greer (JG) enjoys books with a bit of eccentricity. She feels that children's authors should aim to create heartfelt characters and situations containing accessible truths; kids can sniff out a book that is phoning it in. On an average day she reads ten children's books to her son!
Justine works as an academic editor, performing extensive assessments of style and making the choices an editor makes regarding what works and what doesn't.
Shannon Duncan (ShD) is a young adult from South Africa reviewing young adult (go figure!) and children's books for us. Home educated, she's been reading since age 3. She's passing on her love of reading to her younger siblings...and now to your kids.
Shannon's literary interests are Christian, history, science and nature books, and biographies. A violinist, she also has a strong interest in the biological sciences and is a keen birder. Raised in a multicultural family, she enjoys computer coding as well!
Read Shannon's bio.
Daniela Chamorro (DC) was born and raised in Nicaragua. Already with a degree in English from Amherst, she is pursuing a Creative Writing degree as well.
She likes books that create a unique world--not necessarily a fictional one, but that feel real and complex. (Bonus points if a book can both be funny and have depth!) She's also drawn to books that tell a compelling story in very little space. She doesn't like books that fail at these things--that talk down to children or don't create a world.
Read Daniela's bio.
Tassa Dimitropoulos (TD) comes to us by way of Canada and the UK. A stay-at-home mom who taught primary school for five years, Tassa writes poetry, keeps three blogs, and has a degree in Anthropology.
Tassa loves books with great illustrations. She calls herself "biased towards books that promote positive healthy relationships, empathy and respect for oneself, others and the environment." That's a bias we can endorse! And she finds nothing more depressing than libraries filled only with books about the ABCs and 123s.
Read Emily's bio.
Emily Rose Aguiló-Pérez (EAP) is a native Puerto Rican with a Masters in English Education. She is a doctoral candidate in Children's Literature at Pennsylvania State University. Her thesis was on the portrayals of Alice in film adaptations of Lewis Carroll's books. We think she's rather qualified to write for us!
Emily Rose teaches children's lit to future teachers. She likes books that treat children as critical thinkers and don't insult their intelligence. For us, she plans to specialize in books by Latino writers and illustrators.
Read Emily's bio.
Anita Lock (AL) is a mom and a grandmom, with a Bachelor's in Music Education and a Master's in Library Science. She has been a preschool teacher, a home educator, a teacher's aide, a tutor, a music instructor...and a D.J.! She hopes to expand your reading list, so she's out there hunting for what's great.
Read Anita Lock's bio.
Sabine Algur (SA) reviews for us from India! She's a publishing professional, an editor who worked for one of India's top publishing houses, and she has a degree in English Literature.
Sabine has traveled the world, and we couldn't be more flattered that when she wanted to share her opinions about children's books with the world, she chose to do so with us!
Read Sabine Algur's bio.
Karen Talley (KT) a mom and grandmom, has had a lifelong love affair with books. She remembers staggering to the library desk with a stack of books nearly as big as her as a child. She walked to and from that library!
A new writer, she's taken a course in writing for children and sold her first article. Sell a child on reading, she believes wholeheartedly, and you'll have created a reader for life.
Read Karen Talley's bio.
Ramona Davis (RD) is a poet, an essayist, and a writer of fiction. She owned a publishing company, organizes and teaches writing workshops, and owns a professional editing service. She volunteers as an adult literacy tutor as well.
Ramona has a degree in Creative Writing and credits her parents with her love of books and reading.
Read Ramona Davis's bio.
Hailing from Australia, Cathy Friend (CF) started reviewing for us at the ripe old age of eighteen. A voracious reader with a sense of humor. Her other interests are God, writing, music, and the smell of books. She's pursuing an undergraduate degree, but the subject seems a bit up in the air.
Cathy thinks we here in the states spell kind of funny.
Read Cathy Friend's bio.
Natasha Withers (NW) is an only child whose mom knew to load her up with books books books to help fill the time! As a college student, Natasha rediscovered her love of children's books (and creative writing). She's working on her own book series, and she does everything she can to keep her younger cousins as excited about reading as she is.
Read Natasha Withers' bio.
Jane Finch (JF) has been an English Family Law practitioner and a homeschooling mom. She resides in Norwich, Norfolk, United Kingdom. She likes books that strike a wholesome note.
An author herself, Jane specializes in UK children's book reviews and Christian children's books as well.
Read Jane Finch's bio.
Known for her essays and poetry, Suzanne Edison (SEE) now treats us to her children's book reviews. With backgrounds in psychotherapy and education, Suzanne aims to focus on poetry for children of all ages, nature, graphic fiction/non-fiction, non-religious spirituality, adoption, and anti-bias.
Read Suzanne Edison's bio.
Monica Friedman (MF) is a born writer, with the credits, the MFA, and the scarring to prove it. She's also got a tremendous sense of humor.
Read Monica Friedman's bio.
Kristin Peck (KP)
Kristin is a mom of two with a bachelor's degree in English Lit. (Emphasis on Fiction Writing.)She also has an interest in poetry and has published her own YA Fantasy/Science fiction book.
Whatever she's reading to her kids, you'll probably hear about it here! She loves Seuss, Silverstein, Cleary and Veggie Tales.
Read Kristin Peck's bio.
Isabella Thompson (IT) is a former homeschooling mother of four avid readers and holds high standards for the books she lets into her life. She "relish[es] books with love and compassion as the main theme and those that portray characters living true to themselves and influencing others to do likewise."
Read Isabella Thompson's bio.
Sherri Trudgian (ST) is a mother, grandmother and the author of the Psalms for Kidz series.
Sherri knows kids are "giant sponges," and she wants to make sure they soak up the good stuff. She reviews both secular and Christian children's books.
Read Sherri Trudgian's bio.
Tamara Splingaerd (TS) wants to be Eloise, but she's going to have to settle for reviewing Eloise. She's lived just about everywhere, but the one thing she always brings with her is her children's book library.
Blessed with a great sense of humor, she reviews from a parent's perspective - a parent who knows the kids always win. Her love of children's literature and her desire to write them mean we'll probably be reviewing her books before too long.
Read Tamara Splingaerd's bio.
Susan Syddall (SS) is a teacher with a Masters and a homeschooling mom of two in Australia. She's taught in both Australia and Hong Kong, she's set up a preschool, and the "book bag" she takes with her and the boys to the library is actually a box on wheels!
Read Susan Syddall's bio.
Rosalyne Bowmile (RB) is an artist who brings a background as a daycare director and degrees in both Sociology and Children's Media to the mix. She has a particular interest in children's novels (she blogs about them!). She hails from Toronto, Canada, and seems to find a lot of great British books we don't hear enough about.
Read Rosalyne Bowmile's bio.
Steve Barancik (SB) is the creator of this site and the author of the Children's Behavior Books. He is prouder than you can know that his site has attracted such a tremendous set of reviewers.
Steve believes that there's no better predictor of a child's future success than the degree of that child's interest in reading. That's why this site is devoted to helping parents keep their children interested!
Other Children's Book Reviewers:
How we bring you the best children's book reviews
Each children's book review you read on the site contains links to Amazon.com. When you buy a book through that link, our terrific reviewers make a little money, and you don't pay a penny more than you would have if you had surfed to Amazon directly.
Of course, we're big fans of libraries too. No matter where you live, we recommend WorldCat.org for finding books at the library nearest you.
Finally, did you ever think a children's book might help your child overcome a problem behavior? It can. Learn more about my Child Behavior eBooks.
Best Children's Books - Find, Read or Write home page.