Thursday, May 27, 2010

Batty Malgoony's Mystic Carnivale & The Mystery of Journey's Crowne

K. Michael Crawford

 Batty Malgoony's Mystic Carnivale is a wonderful little book for the kids out there who love to draw and show off their creativity.  The book is formed around a simple, yet awesome, concept.  The book takes you through a carnival and offers prompts as to what to draw.  It has outlines of bodies and shapes, so that your child's pictures will fit and blend well with the other illustrations provided by the author.  This book allows your child to express their creativity and have a lot of fun.  The illustrations included in the book are gorgeous.  They are colorful and delightfully haphazard.  This is a book I would enjoy getting for my child.  However, since my rating is based on whether or not the book is worth the asking price, I can't give this book a 1, as the asking price is just a bit too high for my taste.  This being said, I rate Batty Malgoony's Mystic Carnivale a 2, Borders with a Coupon.  Awesome book!

As for The Mystery of Journey's Crowne, I can't say I loved it as much.  This book is an "Adventure Drawing Game" filled to bursting with prompts for drawings, puzzles, games, and riddles.  I have to say that this book was not "Delightfully haphazard" as I described Batty Malgoony, rather, it was just plain old haphazard.  There was too much going on on each page, and it was a bit confusing to the eye.  There wasn't really a clear path through the adventure game.  I really think the puzzles could have been toned down, and a bit more linear, rather than scattered all over every page.  There also was not a place to check you answers.  This was the main complaint of the children I had check out this book to back up my opinion.  They wanted to know if they were right before moving on, and there was no way to do that.  Of course, while the illustrations were a bit all over the place, they were gorgeous and colorful, just like Batty Malgoony.  The author/artist is definitely one to watch.  His art is gorgeous and he has such a talent for cartooning.  Due to the feeling of chaos I just couldn't shake while going through The Mystery of Journey's Crowne, I rate it a 3, Buy at a Used Book Store, as it just wasn't up to par with the other book.

Do you agree with my review?  Do you think I'm totally off base?  Either way I'd love to hear from you, be sure to leave a comment and tell me how you feel!

These books are suitable for all ages.

Now a few words with the author, K. Michael Crawford:

The Book Buff: What is the interview question you always dread being asked? 

K. Michael Crawford: “Where does your creativity come from?”  Since I don't know exactly, I tell them that Fred lives in my head and he quite frequently whispers strange things in my ear for me to hear.

TBB: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

KMC: When my Mother stopped asking me when I was getting a real job.

TBB:  If you had to choose something besides writing, what career would you choose?

KMC: Astronaut or Royalty would be good. Then again I would make a great Spy. Why would I choose these?  Because they would be full of adventure. Every creative person needs to have lots of adventure to put in their work.

TBB: Which writer would you consider a mentor?

KMC: To pick one writer would be like trying to pick one flavor of ice cream. It's better if you get a scoop of each and mix them together. Every time I read a book there is an influence that goes on with every writer. Some stronger than others.

TBB: If you could mirror the career of any other author, who would it be?

KMC: I don't want to mirror the career of another author, I am having too much fun writing my own life story.

TBB: Did you learn anything from writing your book?

KMC: With every book I write and every piece of art I create, I learn something. Sometimes not sure what I learn, but I know the next time I will do something better. My creative voice gets stronger.

TBB: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

KMC: I hope that they enjoy the books I create and Waahoo!

If you are interested in learning more about K. Michael Crawford, his books, and his upcoming work, check out his website,

**FTC Disclosure: These books were given to me by the author in exchange for an honest review, no other compensation was given, all opinions are my own.**

If you are interested in purchasing these books, please consider supporting The Book Buff by purchasing from the following Amazon links.  Thanks!


J~ said...

As awlays, I love the review! I believe that books, especially children's books, should be, in addition to a great escape, fun and accessible. While it appears the second book here is fun, children don't have patience and must find things challenging, but not difficult if they are going to push through and finish the adventure. While i haven't checked this book out on my own, I trust your review, and am glad to see such honesty. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to pop in and say I LOVE your blog!!! Thanks for all of the hard work you put into your reviews.

Anonymous said...

Nice blog! I will have to read more and suggest some books to you too. Check out mine:

Natalie Long said...

You have an award waiting (!

We love your blog :)



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