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Welcome to This Awful/Awesome Life! My name is Frances Joyce. I am the publisher and editor of this magazine. We'll be exploring different topics each month to inform, entertain and inspire you. Meet new authors, sharpen your brain and pick up a few tips on life, love, entertaining and business. Enjoy and please share!

February Reading for Kids by Fran Joyce


February is a great month to read to your kids or listen to your kids read to you. The groundhog comes out to look for his shadow and pink and red hearts brighten up even our snowiest Valentine’s Day. It’s Black History Month when we recognize the struggles of Black Americans and celebrate their many contributions to society. We also take a look at some of our most memorable presidents as we celebrate President’s Day. We’ve prepared an assortment of books about these subjects for young readers of various ages.

Groundhog's Runaway Shadow by David Biedrzycki. Phil the Groundhog and his shadow were inseparable, but one day Phil decided he was tired of being followed around causing his shadow to run away. When will Phil see him again? How will the two friends find each other? For ages 4-8

Groundhog Secrets: Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Woodchucks (Nature in Quebec, Pictures of Astonishing Wildlife Book 2) by Lieve Snellings. Find out about groundhogs from Margot, a friendly groundhog that is only too happy to share her secrets with kids from 6-12.

The Day it Rained Hearts by Felicia Bond. When it rains hearts, Cornelia Augusta collects them and gives them to the special people in her lives. Snowy day activity – Make a bunch of special Valentine’s hearts with your child and let him/her decide who to give them to this Valentine’s Day. For ages Preschool to grade 2

Pete the Cat: Valentine’s Day is Cool by James and Kimberley Dean. Pete the Cat is having an unhappy Valentine’s Day until he remembers all the cats in his life that make him feel special. For ages 4-8

Cam Jansen: Cam Jansen and the Valentine baby Mystery #25 by David A. Adler. A chapter book for young readers with a mystery twist to make Valentine’s Day exciting. For ages 7-10

Fun Valentine’s Day Crafts by Arlene and Herbert Erlbach. Learn about the history and customs of Valentine’s Day and make friendship bracelets, bags of Valentine wishes, special bookmarks and love bug cards. For ages 7-10 years

Pugs and Kisses by J.J. Howard. The adorable cover featuring two pugs is reason enough to get this book. When Ana walks her neighbor’s dog, she meets a boy also walking a pug. Calvin assumes she is the pug’s owner and she does not correct him. Her harmless omission snowballs as the story unfolds and Ana struggles to find the right time to do the right thing and tell Calvin the truth. For ages 9-12.

I Am Enough by Grace Byers. This book, especially written for young Black children is about being proud of who you are – a lesson suitable for children of all races. For ages 4-8

28 Days: Moments in Black History that Changed the World by Charles R. Smith Jr. Crispus Attucks, Madame C.J. Walker and Barack Obama are only three of the brave Americans featured in this book which chronicles the contributions of 28 Blacks who made history and helped change the world. For ages 6-10

Young, Gifted and Black: Meet 52 Black Heroes from Past and Present by Jamia Wilson.  Be inspired by the actions of 52 Black heroes and role models. For ages 9-12

This Little President: A Presidential Primer Board book by Joan Holub. Kids learn about the presidents with this colorful board book. For ages 3-5

The Everything Kids' Presidents Book: Puzzles, Games and Trivia - for Hours of Presidential Fun by Brian Thornton. Learn about the lives of our presidents with fun facts and interesting stories. For ages 7-10

1,000 Facts about the White House by Sarah Wassner Flynn. Go behind the scenes and learn how 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue was built and how many of our first families spent their time at the White House. For ages 8-12.


February is a Great Month to Read... by Fran Joyce

Author Page: Where to Find Your Next Great Read