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Review of “Let’s Visit Dublin” a Bella & Harry book by Lisa Manzione

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Today I’m reviewing Let’s Visit Dublin, a Bella and Harry book by Lisa Manzione, illustrated by Kristine Lucco.

This year my kids have been studying world geography, and we happen to be studying Europe this month!  I was so happy to receive Let’s Visit Dublin since I had a feeling it would supplement our studies in a special way.  And it has!

Let’s Visit Dublin is the eleventh book in The Adventures of Bella and Harry book series.  It’s hardback with a paper cover and 35 pages long. The other books currently in print are Let’s Visit Paris, Let’s Visit London, Let’s Visit Athens, Let’s Visit Edinburgh, Let’s Visit Istanbul, Let’s Visit Venice, Let’s Visit Cairo, Let’s Visit Barcelona, Let’s Visit Rome, and Let’s Visit Jerusalem.  They plan on releasing 3 additional titles in 2014: Let’s Visit Maui, Let’s Visit St. Petersburg, and Let’s Visit Vancouver.

I found Let’s Visit Dublin a very charming book!  It’s written from the perspective of two little dogs who travel with their family to visit different cities of the world.  In this book, they visit Dublin, Ireland.  The two dogs Bella and Harry explain to each other about the different special features of the country of Ireland and specifically of Dublin.  And I’ll confess I learned a lot I didn’t already know!

Bella and Harry teach us about famous landmarks like the Ha’penny Bridge, Trinity College Library, O’Brien’s Tower, and the Blarney Castle.

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We see some of the beautiful landscapes such as Giant’s Causeway and the Cliffs of Moher.  We also learn about the myths of Ireland—leprechauns, the famous giant Finn McCool, and what happens when you kiss the Blarney Stone.  I loved learning about the Book of Kells, which holds the four Gospels from the Bible and was written over 1000 years ago!
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We also learn some basic facts about Ireland, such as its nickname and where it is on the map.  The dogs get to experience and authentic Irish meal. (It would be fun to have the recipes in the back.  Maybe they could include those in future books!)

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And that’s not all, we also get to meet some of the special birds of Ireland.  The last page leaves us with a  list of Irish Gaelic words and phrases.

My children really loved listening to this book.  The illustrations are watercolors and they’re beautiful.  Each of the landmarks and special places and things of Dublin are drawn.  The only suggestion I would have is that it would be nice to also have a few actual photographs.  I wouldn’t want them in place of the illustrations though!

I’m sure that my kids learned more about Dublin with this book, just like I did.  I highly recommend this book (and others in the series) for anyone teaching their kids about world geography, if you’re planning on traveling to any of these cities, or if you  just want a new type of picture book to read.  I also received copies of Let’s Visit Istanbul and Let’s Visit Rome.  We loved those books, as well.  My oldest daughter said she wants to get Let’s Visit Paris next!  You’ll enjoy visiting  their website where you can find interactive games, coloring sheets, and lesson plans!

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(I received a complimentary copy of Let’s Visit Dublin, Let’s Visit Istanbul, and Let’s Visit Rome and monetary compensation in exchange for this honest review. )

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