It’s March Break next week, which means it’s time for Raincoast Books and Chronicle Books’ annual #PlayTestShare promotion… We were sent a list of ten games and books and asked to choose two to feature on our blog.

We chose a word game called Quicktionary and a set of NASA playing cards.

CONTEST! Additionally, Raincoast Books is giving away one of the below to one lucky Kinderlit reader. Must live in Canada and be over 18 years old. Contest closes at midnight March 16th, 2017. ENTER HERE.

Below are all of the featured products, starting with our two choices…


Introducing a new, fast-paced casual card game for word lovers and anyone who loves to think on their feet. Simple to learn, with nearly endless possibilities, this free-for-all game is a fun addition to any game night.

I’m going to be honest and say that I fully expected this game to be a dud. Full disclosure. Outside of Scrabble, most word-based games I’ve played have been tedious. But when we were asked to chose two items from this list to review, we thought a lot of them, though probably awesome, were a bit young for our daughter (7 y.o.) and we’ve already got a stack of coloring books, although we do love them. I thought she might get a kick out of 642 Things About Me, but she’s never taken particularly strongly to suggestive art books.

So we were left with this. I think I may have actually said “Well… I guess we’re stuck with Quicktionary.”

But, truth be told, this game is so much fun. For anybody who likes words, it’s amazing. The basic idea is, you have three decks of cards, each dictating a certain stipulation, and you flip over one from each deck at a time. So you might have a card that requires a word with four letters, another that requires a double consonant, and a third that requires that the word have something to do with the beach; the first person who comes up with a word wins.

It’s surprisingly fun and funny, and tough.

Since our daughter’s a bit young (it’s recommended for 12+) we changed the rules for her (she needs to match two of the three criteria), and she loves it.

If you were playing with a group of adults, it might be fun to use a time limit for each round. (Despite being described as lightning fast, which it often is, some rounds can take quite a while, depending on the criteria set. That’s half the fun of it though.)

 Great game.

Space Playing Cards
Featuring Photos from Nasa Archives
Launch into your favorite card games while immersing yourself in deep space! Each playing card features extraordinary NASA photography and two Pantone colors on beautifully designed card backs. Includes a complete 52-card playing deck, plus 2 jokers.

We requested these because our daughter has been talking about wanting to start a collection, but she wanted something that not a lot of people collect. We’ve also started playing a lot of cards around the house, as a way to spend time together and to help her math. (She has to keep score when we play Crazy Eights…) She settled on a playing card collection after seeing a cool deck in a store a while back.

These are gorgeous. Housed in a slick metal container with a sliding lid, they are beautifully designed (the aces are especially nice) and the photographs from NASA are spectacular. The card backs are very cool, with artwork that almost looks like it’s from the age of the space race.

Old MacDonald Had a Truck Bingo

A classic family-friendly game gets revved up with a winning combination of construction vehicles and farm animals, featuring artwork from the picture book Old MacDonald Had a Truck. With six illustrated, double-sided game boards plus a set of colorful bingo calling cards and chips, this easy-to-learn game is sure to be a hit at any playdate or family game night.

Mighty, Mighty Construction Site

All of our favorite trucks are back on the construction site–this time with a focus on team-building, friendship, and working together to make a big task seem small! Down in the big construction site, the crew faces their biggest job yet, and will need the help of new construction friends to get it done. Working as a team, there’s nothing they can’t do!

642 Things About Me: Young Writer’s and Artist’s Edition

A new offering in the wildly popular 642 series, this unique journal encourages young creators to dive deep into the subject they know best-themselves! Packed with quirky, thought-provoking, and imaginative drawing and writing prompts, this journal a fun way for kids to document their lives, jump-start their creative talent, and produce a memorable keepsake-or the first draft of their bestselling memoir.

TouchThinkLearn Fly!

A deceptively simple and joyful celebration of the natural cycle of life, this book adds the bonus of removable-and movable-characters and scenery to the bestselling TouchThinkLearn format, featuring the hallmark production technique of glued-on pieces dovetailing with die-cut openings.

Birds of the World
A beautifully illustrated guide that introduces aspiring ornithologists to fun facts through a range of coloring activities, removable stickers, and a short quiz. In the process, children learn about the rich variety of birds living in our world, including nightingales, swallows, hummingbirds, pelicans, penguins, parrots, toucans, and flamingos, and many more.

Crystal Menagerie Coloring Book

This fresh new coloring book renders foxes, birds, hedgehogs, and more with a prismatic look that makes them as cool to display as they are pleasing to color. With just the right level of detail, these unique designs can easily be completed in one sitting if so desired, but those who want a more involved coloring session can opt for a 3-dimensional look-and make these animals leap off the page.

Ultimate Book of Cities
Featuring 59 flaps, pop-ups, pull tabs and movable parts, this all-you-need-to-know guide provides detailed information about what makes a city tick: from the different ways of getting around and what goes on in all the big buildings, to what traffic signs mean and who are all the people who keep the city in tip-top shape!

Towering Tree Puzzle

Join adorable critters as they navigate the seasons and make new friends in their towering tree. Imaginative play and puzzle logic intersect as each interlocking branch of this innovative puzzle tells a new story, providing hours of entertainment. Adventure is just a branch away!

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