Music and Book Reviews
for Children
By Paula Hamilton

 

 

PUPPERVILLE and Songs From The Animals Speak
M. Aganze Jones 
By Naze’s Notemakers 

Pupperville is an adorable CD filled with 11 songs; ten of them from “Pupperville”. Pupperville is named after a real dog named Rudie, whose face is featured on the compact disc, and in the photo on the cover. Rudie’s nine friends sing their own songs of introduction. There is Bunny Borough, Kitty City, Frog Pond, Bird Woods, Turtle Land, Mouse Village, Fishy Beach, Pony Ranch and Duck Lake. The last song, “The Animals Speak” is a song with a plea from all the featured animals to treat all creatures with love and respect, to preserve the Earth; their home, and an encouragement to make our home a place of peace. 

I took the time to call Aganze (the woman featured on the back of the CD). I wanted to find out if Pupperville had any more manifestations. She has plans to put Pupperville into a book, and at the present time, is finalizing the choice of an illustrator. The first thing I thought when I heard this CD, was what a great puppet show it would make! I could see the parts being played by adults for children or by the children themselves. Pupperville would also make a nice animated video. 

It’s a great way to introduce some of the creatures in the world that most kids are familiar with and love. Plus it has a much-needed message. Children who love and respect animals will be much more likely to love and respect people as well. I would encourage you to check out their web site at www.pupperville.com . I was told this is an ongoing work in progress, with many hopes and plans for the future). 

They can also be e-mailed at nazesnotemakers@earthlink.net . I thought it was great, and my built-in test market (three-year-old Han-nah) loved it too. It would make a super sing-a-long for the car! Next stop, Pupperville. 

For more information or to obtain your own copy please call (818) 407-8840. 

 

THE SUNBEAM AND THE WAVE 
Written By Harriet Elizabeth Hamilton 
Unity House Publishing 

Wow! This book is really something different. It is one of those “Velveteen Rabbit” books. In other words, it can be read on two very different levels. The children’s book level is terrific. The illustrations by Connie Bowen are superbly done, the story line is very engaging and can be read to a variety of ages. Although I would recommend condensing this story for younger readers, as it can be a little long for short attention spans. 

The “other” level of this book is almost like a mystical Kabbala-like tale. It wasn’t until the end of the book that I read Harriet’s story of where the tale was birthed from, but I wasn’t surprised to find it had its roots in a story from A Course In Miracles. In brief, the tale is about a sunbeam and a wave and how they relate to the world around them, and to each other. 

But the story of their adventure is really a story about us, and our adventure through life. It is a story about our fears and misunderstandings, our needs and insights as we struggle to understand ourselves and the world we are a part of. I think this book can be successfully utilized in therapy. The message is below the surface, but not hard to recognize. I saw it unfolding as I read it to my daughter, then about halfway through, she went off to play with something else (but she is only three) and I happily immersed myself in the rest of the book. 

The hardcover edition I received for review has several pages at the end of the book that are blank. I would encourage you to make use of these. Notes are highly appropriate here. One section of the story I really loved was where the little wave becomes embroiled in a storm. He is so fearful of getting engulfed in the ocean that he fights and fights against the tide (fights against himself in a way) until he is completely worn out. 

Once he surrenders to the larger forces of the ocean, he finds himself carried away, and transformed from a wave to droplets, to foam, to mist, and then back to a wave. He returns to the ocean aware that he can be manipulated by these forces and still maintain himself. He becomes aware that he is part of something much larger than himself. He becomes aware of other waves around him, and ceases to be afraid of the vast ocean he is in. Meanwhile, the little sunbeam is going through some changes of her own. Once they meet up again, after the “dark and stormy night”, they are better for it, and better for each other. 

A wise and wonderful “children’s” book. I highly recommend it for all ages. 

Available from Unity House at (800) 669-0282. 

 

THE TWELVE GIFTS OF BIRTH 
By Charlene Costanzo Featherfew Press

Remember Sleeping Beauty? Well, the Twelve Gifts is almost like a Sleeping Beauty remake. The “modern twist” is the Twelve Gifts are not solely destined for “Royal” children, but for all of us! This book was a pleasure to read; my daughter’s top five all-time favorite stories include Sleeping Beauty, so this was really fun for her. I liked the book because I felt the author was accomplishing what she set out to do, which was to awaken within all children the awareness that they are special, and have been from birth. 

The description of each “gift” is accompanied by terrific colored photographs that are artistic and visually pleasing. The gift has a short “wish” following. The gifts are, in brief; Strength ( I really loved the photo that accompanies the “wish” to call on it whenever you need it. A young girl about to climb aboard a school bus!) The second gift is Beauty. The third, Courage. The fourth, Compassion. The fifth, Hope. The sixth, Joy. The seventh, Talent, with a “wish” that each child discover theirs. The eighth, Imagination. The ninth, Reverence. The tenth, Wisdom. The eleventh, Love. The twelfth, Faith. 

The book is so beautiful on its own, and the message is a dose of what each of us, but especially our children, need. Can you imagine what feelings can be instilled, and what discussions may be sparked, by a book that tells each child they are beautiful? Not in the modern make-up slathered, starvation-encouraged marketing mode of beautiful, but the honest reflection of beauty that comes from the Creation all around us. 

Imagine a book that tells children they have the strength to get on that school bus, or the courage to follow their own path, in the face of peer pressure. What a wonderful gift this would make for a child about to enter Middle School. (Do they still call it that?) Or perhaps you know, or have a child who needs a little extra encouragement, a little extra confidence and belief in themselves. Couple this with a spiritual foundation and it will be doubly strong. 

We all need to know we are special in some way. What a good way to discuss talents and ask your child what they think their talents are or may be. A truly special and inspirational book. I highly recommend this for home or a gift. 

For more information please call Booth Media at (760) 635-1830. 

 

ALL MY RELATIONS
A PRAYER Poem 
Illustrations By L.T. Sparrow
Published By L.T. Sparrow

“Prayer” is a wonderfully written book, beautifully illustrated and readable to young as well as old. The poem encompasses the philosophy “that I am you, and you are me”. Through the variety of continents, people, animals, rocks and trees a single common thread is woven, tying you, me and all that is — together. This oft-shared vision is so well done in this book because the author’s vibrantly colored, but soft feeling illustrations link all the represented objects in such a way that it would feel like something were missing if that one object were not there. 

When I read this book to my daughter, she said “yuck” to the “creepers”. We are going through a yucky bug phase, and everything that resembles a bug is persona non grata in her world. But it gave me a chance to talk about how even the bugs are part of the long chain of links that knit our world together. The culmination of this series of links is the cover illustration, shown in full on one of the inside pages, which shows all the concentric circles of links, trees, people, creepers, swimmers, animals, birds, the standing stones, what was, what is, and what shall be. My first thought was what a lovely poster this would make, and I was glad to find mention of her illustrations available as cards and prints. 

One of the pages has a very special transparency of Geronimo, on one side, and the author on the other. When placed on top of one another, it makes one face. A blend of Male and Female, Old and Young, Caucasian and Native American, Is and Was. 

It is very special, the whole book is special, and has a special message. Albeit a simple one, but still one we have yet to grasp. I think this would be a terrific addition to your home library, it would also make a meaningful and beautiful gift. I really liked reading this, not just to my daughter, but to myself. The poetic wording, the illustrations, all made it rather meditative to read, and it genuinely provokes a meditative thoughtfulness of who we are in this great vast linkage. Very nice! Worth obtaining. 

For more information please call (209) 795-6311 or surf the web to www.sparrowlt@aol.com 


Return to the July/August Index page