Official Review: Smiling Back At You

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kandscreeley
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Official Review: Smiling Back At You

Post by kandscreeley »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Smiling Back At You" by K K Ashton and A K Ashton.]
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2 out of 4 stars
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Sugar is very self-conscious. She is supposed to perform at a talent show at school, but she is afraid of opening her mouth. She meets a playmate named Kylar, who tries to convince her that she doesn't need to be afraid or ashamed. Will she find the courage to perform?

Smiling Back at You by K.A and A.K Ashton is a children's book that would be appropriate for ages 3 to 8. (As a side note, Onlinebookclub.org has the authors' names as K.K Ashton and A.K Ashton, but the book cover lists them as K.A and A.K.) The themes are being yourself and not allowing others to set your limits. The vocabulary is simple with many repeated words. Not only does this help young children easily read the story but it also brings home the point that the author is making.

My favorite part of the story was, in fact, the message. Kids need to learn from an early age not to let others dictate what they can and cannot do. In addition, it will allow them to see that differences are actually common and should be celebrated, as several characters have disabilities.

The characters in the story are all animals, which children will enjoy. Most, including Sugar and Kylar, are dogs; however, one character is a giraffe. It seemed a bit odd to have every other character a dog, but it wasn't overly problematic.

The illustrations are colorful and pleasing to the eye. They went well with the story and were interspersed with the words fairly evenly. My one issue was that Sugar's "affliction" isn't pictured as well as I would like. It's barely noticeable and not realistic to how it would appear in real life. I believe this does a disservice to children that find themselves in Sugar's shoes.

Another problem with the story was the editing. It was atrocious; there were more than ten errors, which is unheard of in a short book like this. Many sentences appeared without periods. A quotation mark was missing. Commas are put in the wrong place, making sentences awkward. For example, Sugar's mom says, "Speak it into, being." This is going to confuse children. Another round of editing - even thorough proofreading - would be extremely helpful.

Overall, the story has a great message, and the drawings are eye-catching. The book is marred by the poor editing, though. Thus, I rate Smiling Back at You 2 out of 4 stars. Children's books should be more carefully edited than adult novels because they don't know better. I would, also, recommend a revision of the drawings. This would work for families as a read-aloud story, especially if the kids don't know how to read yet. That way they won't be learning bad habits. I do hope the authors make some revisions in order to allow the great message to shine.

******
Smiling Back At You
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Post by Honest-reviewer »

Sounds like this book gives a wonderful message to kids. Sorry to know it has many errors. Thanks for your honest review!

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Post by Reitumetse_R »

The message is really encouraging. Children do really need to learn this at an early stage to avoid the peer pressure that comes with teenage-hood at a later stage.
Nice review

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Post by Ada Ling »

Sorry to see this book has many errors. Great review.

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Post by Elvis Best »

The themes of the book sound very encouraging. Too bad about the editing issues, though. Great review!
"People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within." -Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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Post by Rashida10 »

I'm impressed with the author for an inspiring theme like this one. Human abilities are unlimited, which is why we see people putting up record-breaking performances and reaching new heights. I enjoyed your review.

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Post by Ify_Reviewer »

What a wonderful message the book has. Children learning to disregard people's definitions of them at a young age is a blessing. Thanks for the review.

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Post by Topsey »

Always such a shame when the editing lets down your expectations. The premise sounds good though. Thanks for your honesty.

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Post by kandscreeley »

Honest-reviewer wrote:
30 Aug 2020, 07:06
Sounds like this book gives a wonderful message to kids. Sorry to know it has many errors. Thanks for your honest review!
The errors definitely were a disappointment. I hope the authors clean it up. Thanks for your comment.
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott

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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley »

Reitumetse_R wrote:
30 Aug 2020, 15:01
The message is really encouraging. Children do really need to learn this at an early stage to avoid the peer pressure that comes with teenage-hood at a later stage.
Nice review
Yes, peer pressure is intense. The younger they can learn to embrace differences, the better. Thanks!
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott

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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley »

Ada Ling wrote:
30 Aug 2020, 20:45
Sorry to see this book has many errors. Great review.
I was hoping that it would be a bit better edited. Thanks.
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott

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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley »

Elvis Best wrote:
31 Aug 2020, 03:33
The themes of the book sound very encouraging. Too bad about the editing issues, though. Great review!
Yes, the themes are very important for young people today. I hope the authors can clean it up. Thanks!
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott

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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley »

Rashida10 wrote:
31 Aug 2020, 04:30
I'm impressed with the author for an inspiring theme like this one. Human abilities are unlimited, which is why we see people putting up record-breaking performances and reaching new heights. I enjoyed your review.
Yes, it's amazing what the human race can overcome. We shouldn't limit ourselves. Thanks!
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott

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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley »

Ify_Reviewer wrote:
31 Aug 2020, 04:37
What a wonderful message the book has. Children learning to disregard people's definitions of them at a young age is a blessing. Thanks for the review.
It really is a great message. I hope the author cleans it up to make it truly inspiring!
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott

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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley »

Topsey wrote:
31 Aug 2020, 14:56
Always such a shame when the editing lets down your expectations. The premise sounds good though. Thanks for your honesty.
I agree! This could be a good book with a great message. Thanks so much for your thoughts.
Good books, like good friends, are few and chosen; the more select, the more enjoyable.
-Louisa May Alcott

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