J is for Journey Mama- A Stealthy Book Tour!

Hooray! I get to have my day to host Secret Agent Josephine's Stealthy Book Tour!

I still remember when I found Secret Agent Josephine, AKA Brenda Ponnay. I was fairly new to blogging, and I had just given birth to the Leaf Baby. Brenda had just had Bug, and so I would peek over there at another mama's experience with her adorable newborn.

This is Bug and Brenda now:

Sigh. Leafy and Bug are growing up way too fast, don't you think? They're practically grown-ups.

I've always been in awe of Secret Agent Josephine's incredible crafting abilities, as well as her talent at whipping up an illustration at the drop of a hat. I love how she absorbs creativity right into her parenting, how she and Bug cook things up together. Love it.

So I was super excited to find out about Brenda's three children's books, and to receive a copy of each of them so that our tribe could check them out and see how we felt about them. How did we feel?

Well, we're an FWAI, A Family With An iPad. (I just made that acronym up.) At first, we were just a lady with an iPad. I bought it a year ago because I needed something safe to write on, to drag around to cafés on Indian beaches, something much less delicate than a laptop. But, as I soon discovered, it takes a hard hearted Mama to keep such a fun gadget away from her kids. So now it belongs to everyone. And since we've had it, it has saved our lives on a few occasions. (I'm only partially kidding. When we were somewhat lost in Thailand, I used the Lonely Planet I had downloaded on Kindle to find guesthouses or figure out where we were.)

When Brenda said she could get us the digital book files, I was really interested. So far, the only thing we've read on the iPad together is Winnie the Pooh, (because you get a free copy on iBooks.) So... how did we feel?

We were absorbed,



and attentive.

My older kids particularly liked Secret Agent Josephine's Numbers, the newest of the three books, and the most Spy-ish. Kid A read it aloud to the other three, and they all discussed which things they would like to have. YaYa liked the 7 wiggity wigs page best. Leafy liked the 10 secret listening devices page. Solo liked the shatter-proof underwater camera, on the 9 Stealthy Spy Cameras page. Your sedated mouse is in need of a companion. They argued over which shade of lipstick Secret Agent Josephine is applying on the 4 Luscious Lipsticks page. (Was it Ruby Red with Silly String or Ordinary long lasting in Stealth-Berry?) It's possibly the closest they'll ever get to lipstick in this house, with this mama.

We loved the colors and the alliteration in Secret Agent Josephine's Colors, and also the fact that Silver is given a place in the colors book. Silver is often overlooked, sadly enough.

I loved the fact that Bug wrote one of the lines in the book:

A black beetle banging on his banjo singing, Bo biddly bum bum!

Clearly, she has a sparkling writing career ahead of her.

Solo and I enjoyed Secret Agent Josephine's ABC's tremendously. I think it was his favorite. (And my older kids can still get themselves into some ABC action. They're not too cool for the alphabet.)

Solo is... how shall I put this? Impossible. Sometimes. When you try to teach him, his learning method can be best described as Very Direct Contradiction. With yelling, sometimes, to make his point.

For example:

"This block is blue, Solo."

"No it's NOT. IT'S ORANGE."

He has thus successfully avoided learning his colors and letters.

So you can imagine my delight when we went through Secret Agent Josephine's ABC's. I read "A is for Apple," and he repeated my words on each and every page. He loved it. Especially the U is for Underwear (Undies) page. And how could he not? The illustrations are adorable and colorful, but simple, easy on a three-year-old.

So the Fords, an FWAI, really like Brenda Ponnay's books and we look forward to whatever she comes out with next. (App? Yes please!)

The books are all available for download for $2.99 in the Kindle store, and are available in print for $9.99.


Today Brenda is giving away one "J" print for a Journey Mama reader. Simply leave a comment in the post, and you'll be entered in the giveaway.