Book Review: Daisy’s Defining Day by Sandra Feder and Susan Mitchell (Illustrations)


Daisy’s Defining Day by Sandra Feder and Susan Mitchell (Illustrations)

Daisy loves words, so she is delighted when Miss Goldner teaches the class about alliteration. When her neighbor Grant starts calling her Lazy Daisy, she decides to come up with an alliterative nickname so dazzling it sticks. As Daisy collects D words that describe her, her determination to find the perfect name might lead her friends and family to call her Crazy Daisy! Daisy’s Defining Day is book two in the Daisy series. With its fresh fun characters and engaging, believable stories, the Daisy series introduces children to the satisfaction of independent reading and the joy of playing with language.

Age Range: 7 – 10 years
Hardcover: 96 pages
Publisher: Kids Can Press, Ltd. (March 1, 2013)

About the Author:

Sandra V. Feder, author of the Daisy series, has wanted to write children’s books since she was in third grade.  That’s when her school librarian began introducing the students to local authors.  Sandra had always loved playing with words and meeting authors gave her a glimpse into the world of creating stories for children.
After graduating from Stanford University, Sandra began her writing career in journalism. She worked as a news clerk in Washington, D.C., for The New York Times, and then as a reporter for several newspapers in California. “Writing for newspapers taught me the power of words and the importance of using words well,” Sandra says.

After she married and had children, Sandra wrote a column for a local newspaper about the joys, frustrations, and funny moments parents share.  She also joined a writing group, many of whose members wrote for young readers.

That prompted her to try writing for children herself.  “My mother, who was an elementary school teacher, was extremely creative and loved books,” she says. “When I was young, she always encouraged me to make up stories that I told to my younger brother at bedtime.”  Now, Sandra draws inspiration from her own children’s younger years.

In the Daisy series, Sandra encourages a passion for words in the next generation.  “I want kids to relate to Daisy and to develop their own love of words and language,” she says.  “I hope to see every child carrying a green notebook that is covered with purple polka dots and filled with favorite words!”

Like Daisy, Sandra has a sweet tooth and likes everything, except licorice, on Daisy’s Sweetest Words list.

Sandra lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband Dan and three daughters.

Author photo courtesy of Steve Maller Photography.

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About the Artist:
After graduating with a degree in Drawing and Painting from Edinburgh College of Art, Susan had various jobs—unfortunately most of them had nothing to do with illustration. Her most creative jobs were working as a scenic artist’s assistant at an old theatre and running art workshops for community groups.

Then, in 1994, Susan emigrated with her husband from Scotland to Montreal. Before leaving, she visited a gypsy fortune teller who said that she would move across the water, have an only son and illustrate children’s books. This wonderful prediction encouraged her to pursue illustration as a career instead of just dreaming about it.

Susan now works full-time as an illustrator and has over sixteen books published to date. When she is not drawing or painting, she loves to sew and make soft toys that resemble her artwork. Susan is married to children’s author P.J. Bracegirdle and, just as the gypsy foretold, has an only son named Ewan.

My Thoughts:
First of all, I am always surprised by how many authors live here in the San Francisco Bay Area.  I love living in such a creative place!

Daisy’s Defining Day is a really cute little chapter book full of alliteration and rhyme. Daisy has to deal with a boy calling her a name she doesn’t like. She handles it really well for a little girl and comes to a nice solution.  I liked the focus on words and the use of alliteration throughout the story.

This is a really good chapter book for children starting to move onward and upward with their reading.  It has a lot of new, fun words and a sweet story.

The only thing I didn’t like was that some of the scene transitions were a little abrupt.

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