Winner! Health and Nutrition for DOGS and CATS: by David G. Wellock

Thanks to all who entered our give-away for:

Click on the book cover to visit the publisher Rowman.com

Click on the book cover to visit the publisher Rowman.com

 

We are excited to announce that the winner(s) (as chosen by http://www.random.org), of this great book ( they will receive a SIGNED COPY!) are our hardworking friends over at one of our favorite blogs!

2 BROWN DAWGS BLOG

Please click on the photo to visit their blog!

Please click on the photo to visit their blog!

Their winning comment was:

“Nestle’s favorite food is sliced american cheese from the deli. No cheddar, mozzarella, or white american. No other people food or cat treats. She is a weird cat. :)

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!

Please email your complete mailing address to cgittleman at mi dot rr dot com

Barks and licks and love,

Dakota and Mom

Book Feature and Give-Away: Castle in the Mist-Planet of the Dogs Volume 2 by Robert J. McCarty

A few months ago I featured Volume 1 of the Planet of the Dogs series on Dakota’s blog. If you missed it you can read about it here

Today, I am featuring the second book in the Planet of the Dogs series, Castle In The  Mist.

castle in the mist

With all the horrible things taking place in the U.S lately (specifically Boston) we could all use ( particularly children) a story with a happy ending. 

From Castle In The  Mist:

Out in space, on the other side of the sun, is the Planet Of The Dogs where dogs live in peace and happiness. This is the story of how the dogs came down to planet earth to prevent war in the land of the forest people and free the kidnapped children from the Castle In The Mist.

Dogs are all about love. In fact, the most special thing about dogs is their ability to love. They do this better than any other creature.

From Planet Of The Dogs.net:

After a year of peace Bik, the warrior-chief of Stone City, is preparing for war. His children have been kidnapped by Prince Ukko, the leader of the Black Hawk tribes, and held prisoner in the Castle In The Mist. This is the story of how the dogs came down from their planet, to the land of the Forest People, to free the children and prevent war.

The Black Hawk soldiers had never seen dogs before. They had no knowledge of their courage, cleverness and endurance. And they had no idea that the dogs, through their extraordinary sense of smell, could see in the darkness and foggy mist that enveloped the Castle and the great forest.

 Full of action, adventure and colorful descriptive language, it will delight elementary school children everywhere!

ENTER TO WIN: one lucky person from ANYWHERE in the world, will win one copy of Castle In The Mist. Just leave a comment telling me you would like to be entered. The winner will be chosen by http://www.random.org and will be announced THURSDAY, APRIL 25TH. GOOD LUCK!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Robert McCarty is a producer/writer/director of films and videos on subjects ranging from teenage lifestyles to race relations. His short film,Rooftops Of New York, was nominated for an Academy Award. He is a former adjunct instructor at Teacher’s College, Columbia University and at the School Of Visual Arts, New York City.Planet Of The Dogs was inspired by the many stories made up for his four children and five grandchildren.

ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR: Stella Mustanoja McCarty, who teaches painting and drawing at the Vantaa, Finland, Art School, illustrated the book. She graduated as a painting major  from the Art Academy in Helsinki and also holds degrees from the University of Helsinki in Education and Sociology and Social Policy.

TO ORDER ONLINE CLICK HERE

ISBN 9786928-1-0

 

 

 

Book Feature: Claude in the City, Written & Illustrated by Alex T.Smith

I was recently sent a copy of a  clever book for the elementary school crowd, (ages 7-9) that is witty, fun, educational and has some pretty darned great illustrations to boot! The book is Claude in the City, which was written and illustrated by Alex T. Smith.

Book cover photo courtesy of Peachtree Online

Book cover photo courtesy of Peachtree Online

Having an artistic eye myself, what I love about the appearance of the book is that it is entirely done in the eye-catching color combination of red, black and white. I found that to be refreshing, bold, exciting and sure to catch a little one’s eye!

The book is about Claude (a rather “Snoopy-esque”  looking Beagle I presume? Only Claude’s nose is pointier, but I digress) ,  who loves to go on adventures! When Claude’s  owners (who he refers to as Mr. and Mrs. Shinyshoes) leave for work,  Claude dons his trademark beret, and takes off with his best friend, Sir Bobblysock (“who is both a sock and very bobbly”), and they decide what adventure they will have that day.

Claude in the City is the first of what will be a book series featuring Claude. In this book, Claude and Sir Bobblysock visit the city for the first time. It starts off as an ordinary day as they visit local shops, have tea and visit a museum (where Claude accidentally foils a robbery!) That sure is no “ordinary” day,  that day became an extraordinary day, that is for sure!

If you are looking for a fun book for the little ones in your life, Claude in the City fills the bill! The series will continue with Claude at the Circus (coming Fall 2013) and Claude at the Beach (coming Spring 2014).

Photo courtesy of Peachtree Online

Photo courtesy of Peachtree Online

ABOUT THE AUTHOR from Peachtree Publishers: Alex T.Smith briefly considered careers in space travel, cookery and being a professional rabbit before finally deciding to become an illustrator. He graduated from Coventry University with a degree in Illustration and won second place in the Macmillan Prize for Children’s Illustration. He lives in England under the constant supervision of his canine companions-two very tiny, very naughty Chihuahuas and an ancient and very bossy Yorkshire Terrier. 

ISBN: 978-1-56145-694-9

To purchase click here

 

In full disclosure: I was not compensated for this review. I was sent a copy of the book to read/review/feature on Dakota’s blog. All opinions are my own.

Book Review: Planet of the Dogs: by Robert J. McCarty, Illustrations by Stella Mustanoja McCarty

Looking for a book for the  youngsters in your life that sends the message of love, friendship and loyalty?

planet of the dogs bookmark

Have you wondered what life was like BEFORE there were dogs?

Where did the first dog come from?

Why did dogs inhabit Earth?

From the Publisher: Out in space, on the other side of the sun is the Planet Of The Dogs. This is the story of the first time dogs came to planet earth to teach people about love and to save the farmers of Green Valley from the invasion of the Stone City warriors.

Planet of the Dogs is a delightful fantasy for  those in the mid to upper elementary grades as well as their parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents!

The story begins in a time long ago before there were dogs on Planet Earth.

For a while things were beautiful, people prospered and life was good.

Then, as is often the case, where there is good, to have balance in life there must be some bad. Planet Earth was threatened by evil forces.  These forces made some people forget how to love.

When Miss Merrie (Queen of the dogs on Planet Dog) heard of the problems on Earth she knew that something had to be done to help them.  The first dog arrived and the course of the world changed.

“The most special thing about dogs is their ability to love.   They do this better than any other creature.”

People learned about loving without judging, devotion, the rewards of hard work, protection, peace and much more.

Planet of the Dogs is a quick read for adults.  The  resplendent imagery,  is sure to captivate,  delighting the imaginations of the young readers by transporting them to a  fantasy place where dogs are the heroes and heroines.

If only we all always lived the lessons of the most devoted animals on the planet, DOGS. Then it would truly be “Heaven on Earth.”

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Robert McCarty is a producer/writer/director of films and videos on subjects ranging from teenage lifestyles to race relations. His short film,Rooftops Of New York, was nominated for an Academy Award. He is a former adjunct instructor at Teacher’s College, Columbia University and at the School Of Visual Arts, New York City.Planet Of The Dogs was inspired by the many stories made up for his four children and five grandchildren.

ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR: Stella Mustanoja McCarty, who teaches painting and drawing at the Vantaa, Finland, Art School, illustrated the book. She graduated as a painting major  from the Art Academy in Helsinki and also holds degrees from the University of Helsinki in Education and Sociology and Social Policy.

ISBN 978-0-9786928-0-3

Visit www.planetofthedogs.net

 

To purchase

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

 

 

Book Review: The Rescue Team by Billi Tiner

When I  first met Author Billi Tiner  on Twitter and saw the cover of  The Rescue Team, the first thing that intrigued me about this wonderful book for youngsters in the “middle grades” or grades 9-12, was the cover! The cover features the two “stars” of this heartwarming and excitement filled book, Ellie, a Border Collie with an endearing “smile”  and a penchant for “spinning”, ( Shelties can certainly relate!), who was unceremoniously “dumped” off at a shelter when his owners discovered they were going to have a baby, and Toby, a silver-gray tabby cat, who was also treated less than admirably by his owners.  For those who read both of my blogs, do these two remind you of anybody?

 

to purchase in paperback or Kindle form, click on the book cover!

to purchase in paperback or Kindle form, click on the book cover!

That’s right! The two featured on the cover remind me of my Dakota and Cody!

Flat Cody and Flat Dakota that Mom had bought for trip

Cody and Dakota!

When I read the first few pages I was hooked!  There were many things that I loved about this book, but one of the main themes that I loved was the “pay it forward” message that Ellie and Toby display throughout the entire story. Having been rescued, they live their lives rescuing OTHERS, both people and other animals. Ellie, being a “working” dog, finds her “job”,  her  “purpose”  rescuing others with Toby the cat, working devotedly by his side.

There are delightful “messages” or “lessons” that are learned when young people AND adults read The Rescue Team. The “pay it forward” message is clear but there are more messages such as, the power of love, devotion, determination, trust, courage, hope, to name a few.

Another aspect of The Rescue Team that I found to be delightful, was how Author Billi Tiner has the animals that are in this book “speak” to each other.  There are examples of how they speak with their “eyes” throughout the book, sensing whether a person or an animal can be trusted, just by looking into their eyes.  The animals in The Rescue Team “speak” to each other when no humans are around, they also have an uncanny ability to “speak” to the humans, Anne Richards, who adopts Ellie and Toby, and Brent Davis, the EMT who rescues Anne,  (in more ways than one!)


Animals have an inherent form  of communicating  that humans who LISTEN  understand, be it a “smile”, a “spin”, a tail wag, a cat showing love through brushing up against a human, Tiner shows throughout this book that SHE is an animal lover by her obvious understanding of these “gestures.”

 The Rescue Team also teaches us  how, often our first impressions can be wrong, as exhibited when Toby the cat is startled by Tank, the “huge” dog with the “freaky” eyes (one blue, one brown) that sent Toby running up the first tree that he could find!

The Rescue Team is a quick read,  fast-moving, exciting, packed with warmhearted “feel good” moments and lessons that can be learned by both young people and adults alike.

Be sure to put this one on your MUST READ list!

 

ISBN 9781478318156

To purchase in paperback form click here

To purchase in Kindle form click here

Book Review: The Fitzy Resolution by A.D. DeSena

From Dakota’s Den:  Today I bring to you a FIRST on Dakota’s blog. This is the FIRST book review that has appeared on Dakota’s blog that I did not write. This review was done by a most special reviewer, MY HUSBANDLenny Gittleman. Why did my husband review The Fitzy Resolution?  Having two blogs and doing book reviews on both, MANY books have entered our home,  my husband was intrigued by the premise of this book, and asked to read it.  Being  more politically well-versed than I am, I felt he was the perfect “candidate” to do this book justice. The fact that he was a Special Education teacher for 36 years, and is incredibly intellectually gifted, doesn’t hurt either! So sit back and enjoy my husband’s review of Author A.D. DeSena’s:

The Fitzy Resolution

It’s a “dog eat dog world” in both a figurative and literal sense in the innovative fantasy/political thriller The Fitzy Resolution by A.D. DeSena.

To purchase click on the book cover!

To purchase click on the book cover!

Set in a futuristic society where dogs have their own governmental body called the “Central Canine Government”, the premise involves trying to discover why Yorkshire Terriers are mysteriously disappearing at an alarming rate. Other elements essential to the plot are the ever-increasing threat to the preservation of canines by a group of strays called “The Wilds”, and the ulterior motives of sinister politician dogs led by Senator Juniper.

The Fitzy Resolution is a brilliant satirical portrayal of our political system, manifested through the actions of canines and other domestic animals. DeSena accurately mirrors the many complexities inherent in running a democratic society.

Just as our country, (the U.S.), is divided along political lines that often hinder legislative progress, in DeSena’s canine ruled society, two political parties, the “Submissives” and the “Contrarians”, with two opposing political philosophies, must somehow find a way to work together to help preserve their canine society from outside forces determined to destroy it.

DeSena is adept in addressing the necessity of compromise and collaboration with opposing viewpoints to achieve the greater good. Through the actions of the protagonist, Senator Labrador-Casey, the author demonstrates that it is important to have ideals, vision and a philosophy, but a sense of pragmatism and cooperation is needed to achieve desired goals.

I wholeheartedly recommend this book for a variety of reasons. On one level it is an extremely exciting narrative that holds the reader’s interest from the first page to the exciting climax. DeSena is a genius at utilizing the technique of personification, ascribing human traits to non-humans. The author has written not only a great story, but a thought-provoking social commentary without sounding preachy, NOT an easy task.

Without reservation I would give The Fitzy Resolution four paws up. NO BONES ABOUT IT!

ISBN 978-0-9847676-0-1

To purchase click here

Book Review: Paw Prints in the Sand by Elizabeth Parker #BtC4A

Since I began my primary blog, (Cat Chat With Caren & Cody), it has been important to me to take part in Blog the Change For Animals, a well-known blogging event where bloggers blog about causes, people and events that  are  near and dear to our hearts in the world of animals.  Blog the Change For Animals  takes place annually, (January 15,  April 15,  July 15 and October 15).   Many of us blog about animal causes that are important to us all throughout the year, but  it is extra heart-warming to see so many come together for this most important event.

Click on the badge to visit Blog the Change for animals

Click on the badge to visit Blog the Change for animals

I was given the opportunity of reviewing a marvelous book this past weekend, Paw Prints in the Sand by author Elizabeth Parker. This is not the first book that I have reviewed of Elizabeth’s, it is at least the third! Through the course of reading and reviewing Elizabeth’s books,  I not only became  a HUGE fan of her writing, but I have enormous respect and admiration  for her as a PERSON. Elizabeth has to be one of the kindest, most compassionate women that I have met on my blogging journey. ****More about that at the end of this blog post.

Why include Paw Prints in the Sand in the Blog the Change For Animals blogging event? While reading this book I saw that there was no way that I WOULDN’T include it.

Click on the photo to visit Elizabeth's website and to purchase Paw Prints and other books by Elizabeth Parker

Click on the photo to visit Elizabeth’s website and to purchase Paw Prints and other books by Elizabeth Parker

Paw Prints in the Sand tackles  important subjects such as;  the importance of spaying and neutering pets and adopting from a local shelter, as well as the horrors of irresponsible “backyard breeders” and the deplorable conditions that puppy mill pups are subjected to.

From the moment I began reading Paw Prints my heart was pounding, my attention was riveted, I was on the edge of my seat.  I originally had planned on reading Paw Prints last Friday night, and my intention was to begin the book and finish it on Saturday. I finished Paw Prints in about three hours. I could NOT put it down.


The  imagery evoked is often unsettling , there were times that I cried, gasped and cringed,  the plot was so real to me that I had forgotten that this book is a work of  fiction. While the book is fictional, the conditions described in Paw Prints, sadly, are NOT. 

Note from the Author:

Although this book and the groups/organizations in this book are a work of fiction and a complete figment of my imagination, unfortunately puppy mills and backyard breeders are quite real. The fears and quirks I’ve described in this book are extremely common with rescue dogs.

The environment for puppy mill dogs is incomprehensible. Keep in mind that while not all, many puppy stores do get their puppies from puppy mills and it is a continuing practice here in the United States.

Paw Prints in the Sand isn’t just about puppy mills, it is “a moving love story of sorts that demonstrates the unbreakable bond and sustainable love between dogs and humans.”

Now available on Kindle

Also in paperback on Amazon

And Nook

Available in paperback on createspace.com

Use Coupon Code SG6M99JZ for $2.00 Off on createspace orders!

***Author Elizabeth Parker GIVES BACK

A portion of the proceeds from her books are donated to various animal rescue groups.

One of the first books of Elizabeth’s that I had the honor of reviewing was: Final Journey: Buddy’s Book a tribute to her beloved Golden Retriever “Buddy” who after the publication of Finally Home was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma.  Elizabeth decided she wanted to help other dogs with the same diagnosis, hence Buddy Bracelets was born

Click on the photo to see Elizabeth's beautiful creations and to purchase.

Click on the photo to see Elizabeth’s beautiful creations and to purchase.

40% of the sales of Buddy Bracelets will be donated to canine cancer foundations.

Now, as you can see, after reading about Paw Prints in the Sand and Elizabeth’s ongoing philanthropic efforts for rescue dogs, there was no way that I would ever think of NOT making her mission the topic of my Blog the  Change For Animals post.

Learn more about Author, Elizabeth Parker here

Today I have introduced an author to you who is actively helping to make a change to raise awareness about puppy mills, rescue dogs and dogs who have canine cancer. My question to YOU is: “What is your gift, and how will you use it to bring about positive change to your world?”

Semi-Wordless Wednesday & Winner! “Life Is Pawfect” by Robert Semrow

Thanks to everyone who entered our give-away!!! 

dakota life is pawfect 1

Click on the photo to visit Snoopy's blog!

Click on the photo to visit Snoopy’s blog!

dakota life is pawfect 3

 

Winners of “A Christmas Home” A Novel by Greg Kincaid

Thank you to all who entered this giveaway!

a christmas home

The lucky winners are:

JOAN BRZOSKA NORKUS

AND

ANN MARIE STELMA GRAFF

CONGRATULATIONS!!!

Your books will be on their way

when we have your addresses.

Please email your COMPLETE

MAILING ADDRESS TO:

cgittleman at mi dot rr dot com

Barks and licks and love, Dakota

Published in: on December 12, 2012 at 6:00 am  Comments (18)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Book Review & Give-Away “A Christmas Home” A Novel by Greg Kincaid

Todd McCray a 24-year-old with developmental disabilities,  works at a local animal shelter where he befriends Laura, a young volunteer who also has disabilities but hers are more physical than developmental. Todd and his ever-present, trusted Labrador retriever (appropriately named Christmas) trains Gracie ( who was abandoned  by her owners due to financial woes) to help Laura with the day-to-day tasks that are difficult for her.

The local government in Todd’s town is also experiencing financial woes and in early December delivers the sad news that the shelter will have to close.

What will happen to all the animals?

What will happen to Todd? Laura?

a christmas home

click on photo to purchase from http://www.crownpublishing.com

I love books where the main characters are faced with challenges and are able to prove how these challenges can be overcome. A Christmas Home by Greg Kincaid is one of these books.

You will fall in love with the child-like honesty of Todd McCray and his ability to stay positive, no matter what obstacles are placed in his path and his ability to know his true-calling in spite of his disabilities.

What I particularly loved is the variety of meanings that the title of this book has to the story.

Will Gracie the abandoned dog have a home for Christmas?

Will the shelter animals who are soon to be displaced find homes in time for Christmas?

Will Christmas the dog, well into his senior years be forced to move to a new home for Christmas?

Will Todd find a new “home” for Christmas doing work that he loves and a new residence?

You will have to read this charmer to find out!

It is the perfect book to warm your heart as well as your winter nights!

From Crown Publishing: In A Christmas Home, Greg Kincaid again treats us to a story rich in the courage of people who, in overcoming their own limitations, teach us a lesson in how to prevail, no matter the odds, no matter the trials.”-Steve Duno author of Last Dog on the Hill.

WIN IT! TWO READERS can win a copy of A Christmas Home by Greg Kincaid! HOW TO ENTER: leave a comment telling me you would like to win this book (U.S. only please) by MONDAY, DECEMBER 10th AT 5pm. Winner will be announced WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 12th. (Be sure to leave an email address so that I may contact you if you are one of the lucky winners!) Good luck!

ISBN 978-0-307-95197-7

To purchase visit www.crownpublishing.com