Feb 04

Book Love Tour: The Open Ocean Review (and More)

by Hannah Holt »


With the holidays and my grandpa’s funeral, I’ve had trouble starting up the blog again. I needed an extra push to get me going, so I was delighted when Carrie Finison tagged me in her Book Love tour. What a lovely way to start to start the year.


Here’s how the blog hop works:

1. Pick some books you love (any genre) that you think deserve more attention than they are getting. (As much as I love The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle does not need my help to sell more copies!)

2. Post reviews for the books you chose on Amazon/social media. The reviews can be brief – even a short review on Amazon helps. Posting on Goodreads or Shelfari is great, too, or Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc. The more places you can publicly proclaim your love, the better!

3. If you want, you can also post the reviews on your own blog, or link your blog back to your reviews on social media.

4. Feel free to display the BOOK LOVE badge on your blog – and if you want, link it back to this post so your visitors know what it’s all about.

5. Tag some friends to do the same! Tag friends through their blogs, or on Facebook. That’s it! If you don’t want to wait to be tagged, you can jump right in and start reviewing and tagging yourself.

With that in mind, I’d like to shine the spotlight on a few non-fiction books my children and I have enjoyed this week.

Review #1: The Open Ocean by Francesco Pittau and Bernadette Gervais

The coast is hands down my family’s favorite place to be. We go in swim suits and snowsuits.


Any day we can make it to the beach is a good day. But on those days when we can’t, we have another way to explore the ocean.



This luscious, over-sized picture book by Francesco Pittau and Bernadette Gervais is a sensory experience. It’s like diving into the ocean.

reading the open ocean

{My girls on the mix-and-match bodies page.}

The book has silhouettes, pop-ups, flaps, and more.

A few facts you’ll learn from this book, include:

  • the difference between skates and sting rays
  • how far a sand hopper can jump
  • what sea urchins and hedgehogs have in common

The artwork is gorgeous and produced lots of oohs and ahhs from my children. It’s been an instant favorite. We’re looking forward to reading more books in this series.

Book Review #2The Wild Cat Book by Fiona Sunquist and Mel Sunquist

My children are wild about their wild cat facts. Here’s a convo from yesterday.

4 year old: Cheetahs are black.

7 year old: Cheetah’s aren’t black! They aren’t even a member of the panther family!

4 year old: They are black when they are babies.

7 year old: Okay, but only sort of and only for a little bit.

After reading dozens of books about these powerful predators over the last six months, my children have finally discovered the Bible of wild cats.

The Wild Cat Book

Gorgeous photos accompany this 280 page in-depth discussion of these fascinating creatures. If you have a child who is ready to make the jump from wild cat fan to major enthusiast, this is the book.

Book Review #3: Help Your Kids With Computer Coding, Dk books

computer code

Despite its adult centered title (and the fact it was published by Dk Adult), this is a great book for kids interested in computers and programming.* Our eight-year-old needed help getting started, but after that he was up and running independently.

As parents, we could see our son was drawn towards technology and computers. Rather than let all that energy go into passive technology (watching and surfing), we wanted to encourage a creative experience. This book has really helped with that. Now when he requests “tech time,” he usually wants to play with code.

*There is a separate companion book specifically designed for kids, but this book has worked great for us. Check out Helping Your Kids With Computer Coding: For Kids if you want an even more child centered book.

I’m tagging Erin Bylund of Chicken Babies to continue the blog hop! Happy 2015 everyone. Now that I’m rolling again, I should be checking in more often. Cheers!

  1. Carrie F

    Yay – thanks for jumping in, Hannah, and I love the diversity of the books you chose. My daughter dressed as a cheetah for Halloween when she was 4! Of course, all I could find were leopard costumes but luckily she is flexible. :-)

    • Hannah Holt

      Ha! My son was a cheetah for Halloween this year, too. All I could find were leopard costumes, but he wouldn’t budge. Finally he insisted on making his own costume. :)

  2. Cathy Ballou Mealey

    Wow – what great book choices!
    Love the oversize book spread on the rug. An “open” ocean indeed!

    I’m a little intimidated by the coding book but I bet it is a great resource!

    Hoppy to see the book love being spread around 😉

    • Hannah Holt

      Hoppy to see you here, too!

  3. Erin

    AGH! I did not see that I had already been tagged. I came to your blog and thought “I wonder if Hannah ever posted that book love thing”. Oops. I will get right on it!

    • Hannah Holt

      Don’t stress. I forgot to send you an email! Also for some reason, I’m not getting comment notifications. So I didn’t realize people were commenting. Oops. It’ll all work out. Whenever you are ready. :)