Saturday, April 8, 2017

Review and Interview! Hammer and Nails by Josh Bledsoe

by Josh Bledsoe
Illustrated by Jessica Warrick
Flashlight Press
Picture Book
32 pages
ages 3+

Darcy has plans. She and her friend are going to play dress up, do each other’s hair, and polish their nails. Daddy has plans, too. He’s going to read the paper, mow the lawn, and fix the fence. When Darcy’s friend cancels and she’s sure her day is ruined, Daddy suggests that they tackle their to-do lists together with a Darcy-Daddy Day. Daddy dons a tutu, and Darcy gives him a fancy hair do. They groom the lawn with Her Majesty’s Mowing Service and face off in a Daddy-directed sock battle. But will Darcy want to hammer? Will Daddy do nails? Stepping outside their comfort zones, Darcy and Daddy opt to be open-minded and even a bit daring. As Daddy says, “Sometimes things you’ve never done end up being fun!” With a gung-ho attitude, Darcy masters the hammer, and Daddy goes for it with the nails.


Princess pink fluffiness slams against a hammer, nails and a lawn mower in a fun cooperation.

Darcy's excited about a princess day until her friend has to cancel their plans. Luckily, Darcy's dad stands at the rescue. He needs to get a few things done, but agrees to mix it with her princess schedule. Together, they create the best day ever.

This dad deserves kudos and more. He not only makes every princess dream come true (a nail polish is not an easy thing to deal with) but doesn't let his own work fall to the wayside. This is a perfect demonstration of real cooperation with tons of love. Not only does it work, but the results bring more fun to both sides than they would have originally had on their own.

Darcy is a sweet, little girl with a very normal girl dream to play princess. Her heartbreak, when the day is cancelled, is understandable. Especially girls will sympathize with her. The father is a shinning example of dad's love and warms the heart. The ideas the two come up with to meet both of their wishes and needs is sweet, humorous and full of warm, happy feelings. It's hard not to love the dad/daughter relationship of after going through these pages.

The illustrations are colorful and glide right along with a text fitting for ages 3+. There are cute details worked in, which guarantee a revisit time and again. 

My favorite aspect of this book (besides the wonderful ideas of mixing princess with hard work) is the dialogue. It comes across extremely natural and doesn't have the normal picture book feel. These two are people from everyday life.

Summed up, this is a great read for daughters and their dads. 


Yep, Josh was kind enough to agree to answer a few questions. . .and it seems as if he's as awesome as the dad in his book! 

And here he is. . .

Josh Bledsoe is the author of Hammer and Nails, illustrated by Jessica Warrick, which 
encapsulates many of the things he loves about life: family time, a good cup of coffee, and impromptu living room
dance parties.

In addition to loving his job as an elementary school teacher, Josh enjoys trying to keep up 

with his Cross Country team on training runs, fishing with his best friends, and laughing
 on the couch with his beautiful wife of 12 years.

Josh considers himself a lucky man.  Between his own children (age 7 and 10), and his 

“other” children (a flock of fun-loving fifth graders), inspiration for writing is everywhere. 
 He is currently working on two middle grade novels, in addition to other picture book titles.

Josh lives in Nashville, TN. Hammer and Nails is his first picture book.

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