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Saturday, February 5, 2011

Mayra Calvani Fiddles Her Way to Another Hit

Frederico, the Mouse Violinist
Author: Mayra Calvani
Illustrator: K.C. Snider
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing,
Hardcover: 978-1-61633-113-9
Paperback: 987-1-61633-11
EBook 13: 978-61633-125-2
Copyright 2010
Picture Book: 26 pages

Frederico, the Mouse Violinist is an absolutely wonderful children’s picture book. Through a delightful story, the author teaches about the world’s most famous violin maker, Antonio Stradivari, along with various parts of the violin.

But, what has a mouse to do with Stradivari and violins? Well, Calvani cleverly weaved a story that has Frederico living in the home where Stradivari creates his masterpieces.

Loving the violin, the mouse wished he could play. At night while the master slept, Frederico would play among the violins and move the bow across the strings, making sweet sounds. Hearing the music and seeing Frederico’s appreciation for the violin, Stradivari created a special tiny violin for the mouse.

Adding dimension to the story are full-page illustrations that are vibrant and fanciful, making Frederico, the Mouse Violinist an engaging, kids-will-love-it picture book. The book also provides information on Stradivari; a glossary for words related to the violin, such as bridge, peg, and scroll; and two activity pages. It is an enjoyable and fun tool that parents and teachers can use to introduce the violin to young children.
I happen to love the sound of the violin, cello, and other stringed instruments. My appreciation for music came from my musical family, as well as school music education programs. In 7th and 8th grades my school offered violin instruction which I happily accepted.
Research from the 1950s through to today, demonstrates the benefits music has for children and even societies. Here are some of the benefits children can reap from music education:

~Increases memorization capacity
~Improves reasoning capacity and comprehension
~Helps children learn and/or improve time management and organizational skills
~Helps develop team skills, as well as math skills
~Helps improve coordination and concentration
~Is a universal language and encourages self-expression

Aside from the above mentioned benefits, you never know what will spark a child’s appreciation and love for music, it could be hearing a song, seeing musicians play, or learning about various instruments and their creation.

About the reviewer:
Karen Cioffi is an author, ghostwriter, and freelance writer. For writing and marketing information visit, and sign up for her free newsletter: A Writer’s World. You’ll get 2 free e-books on writing and marketing in the process, and two more free e-books just for stopping by

About the author:
Award-winning author Mayra Calvani writes fiction and nonfiction for children and adults. In addition, she is co-editor of Voice in the Dark ezine and a reviewer for The New York Journal of Books, Blogcritics Magazine's Kiddie Corner, and She's had over 300 reviews, interviews, stories, and articles published in print and online. Mayra is a member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and the Children's Writer's Coaching Club. Visit her website at .

The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor. As a courtesy to the author, please tweet and retweet this post using this little green retweet widget :


The Old Silly said...

Great review, and a wonderful sounding children's book!

Magdalena Ball said...

I enjoyed this book very much and Karen Cioffi's review gives a good sense of it. Mayra's work is very subtle at weaving fact and fiction and children will love this book (the mouse is cute too).

Donna M. McDine said...

Absolutely terrific review. Sounds like a superb book! What a clever way to teach children about Antonio Stradivari!

Carolyn, love your photo!

Best wishes,
Children’s Author
Write What Inspires You Blog
The Golden Pathway Story book Blog

Mari said...

I adore the concept of this book and how it teaches about Stradivari. I believe in the necessity of arts education so this book truly strikes a chord with me. Bravo!

Mayra Calvani said...

Thanks for featuring my book, Carolyn!

I just became your new follower. I hope you'll follow back! :-)

Thank you all for your kind comments!

Karen Cioffi said...

Frederico is a truly wonderful book. Mayra does have a unique ability to weave fact and fiction into a book that children will enjoy and learn from.

Dallas said...

What a wonderful review! This looks like a great book. And I love the title!

-Dallas Woodburn

Mayra Calvani said...

Thank you, everyone and thank you Karen for the terrific review!

Heidiwriter said...

Such a cute-sounding book! Love the cover. My dad used to be a fiddle player :)