Archive for the ‘Picture Books’ category

Don’t Be Afraid to Make a Mistake

October 12, 2017

What if no one ever made a mistake? That would be the biggest mistake of all. Throughout history, mistakes have led to great strides in making our world a better place.

mistakes

A perfectly delightful picture book written and illustrated by Corinna Luyken is The Book of Mistakes. The endpapers begin with a splat of ink and end with a charming surprise. Luyken begins her story with spare text and seemingly simplistic sketches rendered in black ink and surrounded by white space. The reader learns the artist has made a mistake. She corrects it by coming up with a good idea, but then there are more mistakes followed by more good ideas. With each page turn, colors seep into the illustrations. In the middle of the book, there are five wordless spreads in which the artist’s illustrations become more intricate and more colorful. At the end, Corinna Luyken poses the question, “Do you see—” which makes readers pause to think. The final illustrations and text give the reader a closer look into the creative mind of the author/artist who demonstrates how inspiration can change a simple mistake into something amazing.

Make no mistake. Grab hold of this book now!

 

 

 

 

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It’s a Wonder!

September 21, 2017

 

Wonders

We’re All Wonders is a picture book written and illustrated by R.J. Palacio. It’s based on her award-winning novel, Wonder. As in her novel, the main character, Auggie, has a physical disability. On the first page, readers meet Auggie and his dog, Daisy. We find out immediately that Auggie is different. Even though he does things like every other kid, he is not ordinary. His mom calls him “unique” and “a wonder.” Because Auggie’s face doesn’t look like everyone else’s face, people stare and say things, which makes Auggie feel bad. When this happens, Auggie puts on his helmet, and with his dog, Daisy, the two blast off into their own world. They hope for better things because as Auggie says, “We’re all wonders!” R.J. Palacio tells the story with spare text that easily elicits an emotional response from readers. Her colorful illustrations invite readers to keep turning pages as they become part of Auggie’s story. I recommend this book for its themes of acceptance, kindness, and hope.

Get Ready to Turn these Pages

September 14, 2017

 

birds2

If you’re looking for a book to get your toddler/preschooler moving, take a look at Lucy Cousins’ picture book, Hooray for Birds. This book is filled with bold, bright colors and invites the child to imagine he/she is a bird and do what the birds do. The fast–paced rhymes begin with a “Cock-a-doodle-doo!” in the morning and continue throughout the day until it’s time to say good night. Don’t be surprised if your little one insists you read the book again and again, and you’ll oblige because this book is fun for everyone!

bear

Bird, Balloon, Bear written and illustrated by Il Sung Na is quite the opposite of Hooray for Birds. This is a gentle story about finding the courage to make a new friend. The text is spare and the illustrations in the book are muted and soft with a fun double page spread. What makes this book special is it lends itself to cuddling together as you turn the pages to reveal how a friendship blossoms.

These two books are looking for a space in your library.

 

If I Weren’t With You

June 22, 2017

rosie

If you’re looking for a delightful book to cuddle up with your youngster and read, I have one for you. If I Weren’t With You is written by Rosie J. Pova and illustrated by Philip Martineau. It’s a gentle story of a Mama Bear and her love for her inquisitive Bear Cub. On their walk through the forest, Bear Cub wants to know what Mama Bear would do if he had never been born, if he got lost, if a hunter took him, or if they got caught in a thunderstorm. After each question, Mama Bear reassures Bear Cub that she will always be there for him. Philip Martineau’s colorful illustrations depict the two bears in natural surroundings, and Rosie Pova’s lyrical text conveys the unique bond between mother and child. The combination of words and pictures offers a wonderful opportunity to snuggle up together and read.

Climb On Board

June 1, 2017

I’m sure you’ve seen the sign, “Baby on Board.” Of course, that means someone is carrying a baby.

There are many ways humans carry babies – in wraps, in slings, in carriers attached to your back or your front, in your arms …

Like humans, animals carry their babies, too. Baby on Board: How Animals Carry Their Young is written by Marianne Berkes and illustrated by Cathy Morrison, Dawn Publications.

Animals

This is a perfect show-and-tell book for children who want to learn how a variety of animals carry their young. There are two-page spreads throughout the book, and Marianne Berkes cleverly introduces each animal with two lines of rhyming text followed by a short paragraph of factual information. Cathy Morrison’s illustrations are detailed and done in vibrant colors that invite readers to reach out and touch them. The back matter consists of a match game, read aloud suggestions, and an assortment of resources for parents and teachers to use, including math, science, and engineering activities which make Baby on Board ideal for the STEM curriculum.

If your kids love animals, climb on board for some fun and learning with this book!

Problems, Problems

April 27, 2017

Tuesday was World Penguin Day. Who can resist penguins? They’re cute, and they waddle. I hope you didn’t forget your inner child and you waddled like one on Tuesday.

Did you know that sometimes penguins have problems? Read on.

big pen

Penguin Problems written by Jory John and illustrated by Lane Smith, Random House Books for Young Readers.

Penguin is having a bad day. Nothing is right. It’s too early. It’s too cold. There’s too much snow. It’s too bright. It’s one problem after another. Then a walrus comes along with some inspirational words about appreciating what you have. It takes Penguin a while to realize there is a point to the walrus’s words, and Penguin begins to see the world around him as a better place. But then again, there are always Penguin problems. Lane Smith’s delightful illustrations combined with Jory John’s text make this book a laugh-out-loud success for both children and adults.

Waddle to your local library or bookstore and pick up Penguin Problems and some of my other penguin favorites.

pinecone

Penguin and Pinecone: a friendship story written and illustrated by Salina Yoon, Walker & Company

little

 Little Penguin Gets the Hiccups written and illustrated by Tadgh Bentley, Balzer & Bray/Harperteen

grumpay

 Grumpy Pants written and illustrated by Claire Messer, Albert Whitman & Company

tango

 And Tango Makes Three written by Justin Richardson; Peter Parnell and illustrated by Henry Cole, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

 

 

An Egg Surprise

February 9, 2017

On this snowy, blowy, waiting-for-a-foot-of-snow morning, I have the perfect book that whispers the hint of spring and new things to come. Keven Henkes is a talented and prolific writer and illustrator who has received many prestigious awards for his work. In January, his newest picture book, Egg, was released.

egg

The story begins with four eggs. There is one pink, one yellow, one blue, and one green. Three chicks crack out of their eggs, but the last green egg remains unhatched. The chicks wait and wait until their curiosity gets the best of them. They “peck-peck-peck” until it cracks open and they find out what’s inside. It’s not what the chicks expected. Using a combination of single words, repetition, and wordless pages, Henkes crafts a  story of surprise, uncertainty, and eventual friendship. Words and engaging pastel illustrations are sure to delight children as they easily read along with this satisfying story.

 

 


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