The countdown to when my bonus daughter’s will be with us for the summer is on so, in my true to bookworm self, I’ve been looking for new children’s books to share with them that I know they will be able to relate to.
Enter the Horse Valley Adventure books, written by Liana-Melissa Allen, a young author.
The fist book in the series, The Three Little Horses and the Big Bully Donkey is a spin on the classic tale of the Three Little Pigs. Jack, Lax and Max, the three little horses, are brothers who find themselves without a home. As they go about trying to find a new location, building materials and etc. for their house, they encounter the Big Bully Donkey who takes it upon himself to thwart their new-home efforts. This book teaches great values and morals about never giving up, dealing with a bully and it includes great illustrations by Allen herself! This story would lend itself to read-aloud sessions to younger children and for kids who are at a first grade and higher reading level. Parents reading this book will get a kick out of the illustrations as Allen makes them a bit comical at times!
The second book in the series, Donkey’s Kite, Jack, Lax, Max and Donkey are back for a kite flying adventure. Now that the Three Horses are friends with Donkey (thanks to the first book), they decide to go on a picnic and fly kites. Donkey is quickly disappointed when is kite doesn’t work like everyone else’s does. Through friendship and teamwork, kindness and lending a helping hand, (and thanks in part to a goose named Gusty), Donkey is able to fly his kite and the three little horses learn an important lesson about being selfless., Donkey is able to fly his kite and enjoy the day with his friends. The second book by Allen incorporates more morals and values, presented in a fun and colorful way that is sure to engross children. The illustrations in this book are more colorful and vibrant that perfectly complement the story.
I love that these books are written and illustrated by a young author; sends a great message to kids who want to write, draw, and be creative!
Book Description for The Three Little Horses and the Big Bully Donkey (Book 1):
A tale (based on the “Three Little Pigs”) about three little horse brothers who suddenly lose their house that is destroyed by a fire. The young horses are totally alone and thrust into the reality of having to depend on themselves and each other against a bully donkey, who wanders the forest wrecking homes and bullying the other animals. This warm-hearted tale promotes strong values and has a fun premise. Written and humorously illustrated in vivid color throughout by Liana-Melissa Allen, the story is a proven winner for reading aloud to children.
Book Description for Donkey’s Kite (Book 2):
The three horses Jack, Max, Lax and their friend Donkey are back!
In Horse Valley, it’s a perfect day to go kite flying. Jack, Max, Lax, and Donkey decide to get creative by putting together their own homemade kites. However, Donkey’s kite doesn’t work. No matter how hard he tries to get it to fly, it just keeps tumbling to the ground. How will poor Donkey get his kite to fly? A friendly goose named Gusty is delighted to help him out.
In this Horse Valley Adventure, Donkey learns not to give up when all seems hopeless. The friends all learn a lesson about helping others and true friendship.
Liana-Melissa Allen is a young author and illustrator of children’s books and books for youth. She has written, illustrated and published six books. Her most recent one is the colorfully illustrated children’s book “Donkey’s Kite”, the second book of “A Horse Valley Adventure” series. The first was “The Three Little Horses and the Big Bully Donkey”. The lovable cartoon characters, Max, Lax, Jack and Donkey makes them a favorite of first and second grade students. She is now working on her third book of “A Horse Valley Adventure”.
The magical world of fantasy has inspired Liana’s imagination since as long as she can remember. Part of this was fueled by her dad reading aloud to her every day when she was younger. As a result, reading is her primary passion along with music. These two passions feed her imagination into stories and drawings, which she joyously sketches out into storyboards for a potential book.
Liana-Melissa is also a dedicated classical/jazz pianist, and mostly enjoys older music, especially from the big band era and the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s. While playing the piano, her imagination often leads to a great amount of improvising. Frequently, Liana will improvise a theme for one of the stories she is writing. Capturing this improvised music became a priority, which ultimately resulted in theme music for “A Horse Valley Adventure”. The “Horse Valley” theme will be used for a short animated video featuring her Horse Valley characters.
Liana-Melissa loves to hear from her young readers. Please visit her website at www.lmabooks.com for more information, and to contact her by email. Visit her on Facebook too.
Where to buy the books: On Author’s Website | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Win one of ten sets of A Horse Valley Adventure books! One winner will also get a $30 Amazon gift card. Open internationally.Ends April 17.
Disclosure: I was provided complimentary copies of these books for the purposes of my review. All opinions are my own. I was not otherwise compensated.