Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove – a book review

Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove – by: Sandra Harvey

Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove is another example of Ms. Harvey’s non conventional, inspired, and creative approach to storytelling.   The main story of the book is told in a wonderful poem that spans over 76 Full color pages to tell that story of one magical moonlit night in Woods Cove.  Some people say rhyming books are easy to write, and this may be true to an extent. Everyone can find a rhyme for Sun right? -Did you just think Fun?  But,  every once and a while an author really comes through with a story that is told in Rhyme with no typical or forced rhymes.  This is  one of those books, the pace is almost hypnotic, there are no extra syllables, there is not a trace of the story being driven in a direction for the sake of keeping the rhyme alive, and their are no typical easy rhymes.  This is just FUN to read, it’s easy to get in the flow and to absorb all the humor, magic, and adventure while rhythmically flowing from page to page.  This book is great when read out loud, and did I mention it is FUN?
Some of the  other aspects of this book worth noting are: The Hand drawn cartoon art  matches the characters and story very well. The entire book is colored in blues, purples, and greens on black paper and is very soothing to look at and also creates a real feeling of night.    While the main story is written in rhyme, the characters also have non rhyming dialog with each other through the use of comic book style captions… What?  … Yeah you read that right! Comic Book style dialog and thought bubbles that tell a story all of their own. And in addition to that there are subtle words hidden in the background on some pages, that are not only fun to look for, but also convey a general message related to the story.  This combination of elements works amazingly well without one ever stepping on the other. This is distinctively a Sandra Harvey creation. How Sandra keeps  pulling out fresh and brilliant ideas I’ll never know.  I am currently trying to get her to sit down with me  for a YouTube interview.

In a way it is also a bedtime book, but it is a bed time book in which the children stay up and play all night, get lost in a scary fog, end up at a mysterious  tower, and actually do not go to sleep until the sun starts to come up.  This is yet another example of Sandra and her deep understanding of children.

 Another aspect of this story I found to be fresh  is through the Characters Annie Blue, and Lily. Through these 2 characters the book briefly  touches on abandonment and loss but manages to keep it light and comforting.
Trizzella has magical powers, she can talk to animals,  and cast spells but to her it is just part of everyday life.  Where Trizzella’s real magic power is, is in her heart and her sweet gentle soul.  She has a magic sewing needle that has the power to mend hearts and sew stars into blankets. Trizzella doesn’t  hesitate to use her magic to help out a hungry caterpillar who arrives at an apple tree before apple season, or to clear a scary fog.  This story has pirates, ghosts, adventure, food, fun, and an devious little kitty cat (with an amazing hat collection) who has decided his purpose in life is to destroy any chance Trizzella has for finding love.
Like every Sandra Harvey Book I’ve reviewed so far, this book is intended for children, but adults will love it too.

Trizzella The Witch of Woods Cove is available here.

There is also a collection of Free Trizzella cartoons available at
This is one of my favorite Ryhmes from the books.
Underneath the bookcase lives her strangest little cat
his room is full of pirate things like skulls, and books, and maps.
his name is Edward Villain.
He eats birds, and rats, and mice.
Trizzella calls him E.Vil because he’s really not that nice.
 He goes on vast adventures in his vivid little dreams
to destroy Trizzella’s chance for love
he plots and plans and schemes.

Corazon of the Outer Banks :: A book review.

The Spanish meaning of the word Corazon is Heart.

Corazon of the Outer Banks is a heart warming story of friendship and courage and is exactly what you have come to expect from the amazing Storyteller Sandra Harvey.  Adding to the story with his incredibly detailed and expressive full color illustrations  is the amazing London artist Calum Jones.

Sandra Harvey has a way of creating incredibly organic, real, and original characters.  Ms. Harvey’s stories often break current publishing trends,  and this is just one of the things  that I personally love about her writing.    Her current switch from novels to Picture Books is really shaking up the picture book industry and making some very real and very important changes.  This book being the first I have seen with a main character that has an Hispanic heritage and is in no way being portrayed with any of the stereotypes of the Mexican culture.

So many authors fail when trying to create ethnically diverse characters by type casting them based on their race.  It has always been my opinion that a strong non white character would not be any different than a white one in the way they act and behave.  I do not believe that an African American child wants to read a children’s book about segregation  They want to be casting magic spells, saving the world, and going on adventures just like every other child does.

Corazon of the Outer Banks features the two main characters  Corazon and Jose.  Corazon is a wild horse that lives on the coast of North Carolina but does not feel or act like the other wild horses do.  Jose is a boy from Mexico who’s mother brings him on vacation to the Outer Banks for the summer.

On his last day of summer vacation a storm approaches and Jose does not come to see Corazon. The friendship and love that has been built between Corazon and Jose all summer long will test both of their courage, and change Corazon forever.

I love this story,  it’s appropriate for all ages and I think adults will love it just as much as children.  I myself – a 38 year old man cried when I read the last page.  Remarkable storytelling and remarkable art work.  I can see this book being picked up by Scholastic and being read in schools.

    {This section added 7-12-2014} Something I feel is worth mentioning. The organization contacted me through twitter after reading my review.  I was made aware by the Founder Laura Leigh that both Ms. Harvey and Mr. Jones  donate a sizable percentage of their own profits from each sale of this book.  This is a foundation set up to help save and stop the capture and slaughter of the American Wild Horse in the mid west.  Apparently this is not mentioned on the cover of the book or anyplace in the interior because they wish to keep the book 100% kid friendly. I think it is pretty awesome to see an author giving money to a worthy cause and not using that fact for self promotion.

Today I  requested an e-interview with Ms. Harvey, if she accepts I will transcribe it here on my blog.

Also earlier today The Spanish version was confirmed for release in September.

Corazon of the Outer Banks Cover