Sunday 31 May 2015

Night Buddies Go Sky High--Book Review

  • Series: Night Buddies
  • Author: Sands Hetherington
  • Illustrator: Jessica Love
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Dune Buggy Press (March 16, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984741739
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984741731

From the Back Cover:
Young John Degraffenreidt and his red crocodile buddy, Crosley, show up at the Pineapple Cheesecake Factory and find Big Foot Mae lying on the floor, staring up at her Great Star Puzzle on the ceiling. Crosley only wants a new supply of pineapple cheesecakes, but what Mae points to on her ceiling will start the Night Buddies on a totally new fantasy adventure. A suspicious white dot has passed through the Corkscrew Constellation and is now moving underneath the Hound Dog Stars. Across the Borough, Crosley s brother Crenwinkle sees the same curious speck in the sky. It looks to be a long night for sleepyhead John, but thanks to the time spreader dingus with its sleep retardant setting, he gets right into their next escapade. Join the Night Buddies as they embark on another Program, this time taking them all the way into the stratosphere in their racing blimp.

What I Thought:
What do you do when an iguana gang member in a black undershirt breaks into you room in the middle of the night, spits up brown juice on your floor, looking for a fight? Why, you face off in a duel with cans of green spray paint until your red crocodile friends bursts out of the closet threatening the iguana with a menacing pineapple cheesecake, which sends the iguana packing.

This is the tone of the whole book and it is hilarious. Night Buddies Go Sky High is an imaginative, non-stop, funny adventure that had me chuckling on every page. The characters are well developed and the plot keeps the story going at a good pace. The different font sizes of some of the typed words jump out at the reader to add interest to the story. And there's a really funny list of "Night Buddies Uncommon Words" such as:
Loggie: Big gob of spit
Cogitate: To think hard (crocodile weasel word). 

The black and white pencil-drawn illustrations throughout the book are well done and a great addition to the story.

The ending did leave some loose ends for me. Overall, it is a really good book that kids will have fun reading. 

My review of Night Buddies and the Pineapple Cheesecake Scare:

   About the Author

Sands Hetherington is a single dad, world traveler, and lifelong learner who turned his son's idea for a bedtime story into a 7-time award-winning children's book series. He enjoys writing, storytelling, and taking care of favorite 4-legged friends. Sands has an MFA in creative writing and an MA in English from UNC-Greensboro.

Author website:



Friday 22 May 2015

Great Review From Award-Winning Author

Sir Princess Petra's Talent
The Pen Pieyu Adventures
Book 2                                                                       
5 stars
Story Within a Story
Review by award-winning author, Wayne Clarke

I have given a well-deserved five stars to Diane Mae Robinson’s delightful tale Sir Princess Petra’s Talent. But if I had the good fortune to live in her uniquely nutty fantasy world I would be allowed to give it the praise it truly deserves: five onions, fresh from the Royal Onion Room.

I’ve read all the wonderful reviews previously written for this series, The Pen Pieyu Adventures. Clearly, the author has a deft hand when it comes to exploiting the imagination. Within only a couple of pages I became a citizen of her world. 

As other reviews have pointed out, the plot twists are relentless, each one producing a sweetly bizarre new character, and they are characters who subtly demonstrate that gender is of no matter when it comes to bravery and talent. After all, knights wear pink, don’t they?

A poem about jam made me chuckle, but what almost took my breath away was the story within the story read to the court by Sir Princess Petra, a story created with the Talent of the book’s title: writer. I leave you to read it for yourselves.

I want to mention that I chose to read this tale out of nostalgia for the days when my daughters were young and I read to them nightly. Shortly after I began reading Robinson’s book on a quiet Saturday morning, I began reading aloud, to me and myself. I wish I could have shared this book with my children. 
Illustrations by Samantha Kickingbird

Illustrations by Samantha Kickingbird

B & N :


Book three, Sir Princess Petra's Mission, forthcoming, Fall of 2015

Book three Synopsis:
   Sir Princess Petra has already attained her Knighthood in the Kingdom of Pen Pieyu and her non-princess-like Talent Certificate from Talent School, neither of which pleases her father, the king.
   The king writes up more silly rules in the royal rule book to deter Sir Princess Petra from her knightly ways and useless talent, and turn her into a real princess once and for all.
   Will the king finally succeed with this newly written, ridiculous mission for Petra?
Book 3 Endorsement:
Diane M. Robinson has created a heroine unlike any other in children’s literature. Sir Princess Petra sets a fine example for young readers, and for young girls, as the Princess teaches them what’s really important, like friends, being true, brave, honest, and always having faith in your Dragon! Ms. Robinson sets the bar by writing a truly charming and imaginative adventure series and I heartily recommend it.
Jeanne E. Rogers, Author of the award winning middle grade fantasy, The Sword of Demelza.

To read more review about the multi-award winning series, The Pen Pieyu Adventures, dragon books for children:

Saturday 9 May 2015

Sixth Award for Children's Book Author

Button Images

Award winning author Diane Mae Robinson has announced that 'Sir Princess Petra's Talent' has 

received the Children's Literary Classics Seal of Approval

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Award-Winning Children's Book Author Diane Mae Robinson's 

'Sir Princess Petra's Talent' Receives Children's Literary 

Classics Seal Of Approval

Robinson’s multi-award winning books, ‘Sir Princess Petra', and the second book in the series, 
'Sir Princess Petra's Talent', teach children valuable life lessons through engaging fiction
[ April 23, 2015, St. Paul, Alberta, Canada ] Award winning children's book author Diane Mae Robinson
has announced that 'Sir Princess Petra's Talent' has been selected to receive the Children's Literary Classics
 Seal of Approval.  The CLC Seal of Approval is a designation reserved for those books which uphold the 
rigorous criteria set forth by the Children's Literary Classics review committee, a team comprised of individuals 
with backgrounds in publishing, editing, writing, illustration and graphic design. CLC is an organization 
dedicated to promoting excellence in literature with the goal to help readers select the finest books available.

"Receiving a Seal of Approval from Children’s Literary Classics is an incredible honor," Robinson stated.

This is the 6th award for the multi-award winning children’s chapter book series, 'The Pen Pieyu Adventures'.
 'Sir Princess Petra', the first book in the series, took the First Place Award for children's books in the
 2013 Sharp Writ Book Awards. 'Sir Princess Petra's Talent', the second book in the series, took the
 Bronze Medal in the 2014 Reader's Favorite International Book Awards in the grades 4 to 6 category.

Robinson 's highly praised, multi-award winning children’s book, ‘Sir Princess Petra’, the first in 
The Pen Pieyu Adventures series, has been labeled by reviewers as ‘a fantasy adventure that 
is sure to become a timeless classic.’ The Pen Pieyu Adventure series is written in the tradition 
of C. S. Lewis and is reminiscent of ‘Shrek’.

'Sir Princess Petra' took an Honorable Mention award in the 2013 Readers' Favorite International 
Awards for Children Grade K - 3rd. Robinson was also honored with two major awards for the book. 
She was awarded the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Emerging Artists Award for Children’s Book
 Author and took 2nd place in the Purple Dragonfly Book awards for Children’s Chapter Book.

'Sir Princess Petra' has garnered multiple 5 star reviews and high praise from reviewers:

“A maverick fantasy, packed with plot twists and turns, brilliant flashes of humor, and originality.” 
James A. Cox, Editor-in-chief, Midwest Book Review

“Sometimes a kids book comes along that turns convention on its ear. This is one such book.”
 John L. Hoh Jr., Book Ideas. com

“Distinctly quirky and uniquely interesting--I really feel this book is a gem.” 
Renee Cormier, Mother Daughter Book Reviews

“A delightfully imaginative read, a tale that invites readers on a fearless journey towards friendship 
and self-discovery.” The University of Manitoba Book Review

“A fantasy tale with substance--this is a bright and breezy book, buoyed up by its humor.” 
Stephanie Dagg, Readers’ Favorite

“Imaginative, creative, every child deserves to read this book.”  Olivia Dsouza, Readers’ Favorite

‘Sir Princess Petra’s Talent’ has also received multiple 5 stars and high praise from reviewers:

“A book we want to define as a graceful masterpiece in children’s literature.”
 Advices Books

“Sir Princess Petra’s Talent is written with brilliant imagination intertwined with wonderful humor!”  
Sharee, Sharee’s Sentiments

“Sir Princess Petra’s Talent is quite simply, wonderful.” Jack Magnus, Readers’ Favorite

“This is a wonderful, fast-paced story full of humor and profound messages.” 
Alinka Rutkowska, Award Winning Children’s Author

“Diane Mae Robinson has done it again—captivating, light-hearted, a whimsical fantasy.” 
Mark Simon Smith, Children’s Book Author

Robinson uses the dragon books concept as the background to teaching young people traditional values.
 Ms. Robinson's highly praised work demonstrates that dragon books can be something much more than 
fantasy tales.

The third book in the series, 'Sir Princess Petra’s Mission – The Pen Pieyu Adventures', is scheduled for
 release in the fall of 2015.

The announcement from Children's Literary Classics can be viewed at

Diane Mae Robinson is available for media interviews and can be reached using
 the information below or by email More information,
 including reviews, information for teachers and librarians, a downloadable lesson plan and 
a special children’s section is available at her website at
Both books are currently available from Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

About Diane Mae Robinson:

Diane Mae Robinson has a journalism diploma from the Schools of Montreal, and an advanced diploma from 
the Institute of Children's Literature in Connecticut. She is a writing instructor/tutor for the Children’s 
Writing Course at the Creative Writing Institute. She is also an artist and teaches acrylic and watercolor
 art to children. Diane lives in a small hilltop castle in central Alberta and has four dogs and five horses, 
along with a forest inhabited by gnomes, fairies, a princess, and a dragon. This magical forest is where 
Diane creates her characters and gets the inspiration for her stories.

Diane Mae Robinson

Teachers/Librarians page link:
Lesson plan link:'s_Lesson_Plan.pdf
- See more at: