This is a book where little baby animals ask their grown-up animals how to do certain things: to swing, follow, play, or whatnot. Each little page hasThis is a book where little baby animals ask their grown-up animals how to do certain things: to swing, follow, play, or whatnot. Each little page has a photograph of some sort of baby animal often with the other animals and a bit of text that explains just what the baby animal needs to learn. For example, on a page where a mama giraffe is stretching her head down to little baby giraffe’s level so they can touch foreheads it reads, “Teach me how to be a friend. Show me how to stretch and bend.” And so goes all other little rhymes.
As far as text (and sometimes photographs) go, this is a decent book. But the reason I am paying attention to this book is that it is the perfect book to read at a baby storytime (for really little pre-walker babies). I wouldn’t read all the pages in one storytime, but I would read a few pages each week. And this is the type of book that moms will ooh and aah over while giving their little ones a bit of extra love. Such a fun potential moment for reading to the especially little babies who just need a few rhymes and reasons to cuddle while reading a book. And for that purpose, I have enjoyed this book....more
This is one of my new favorite nonfiction books. It is all about great white sharks and how they live and survive in California’s Farallon Islands (thThis is one of my new favorite nonfiction books. It is all about great white sharks and how they live and survive in California’s Farallon Islands (think San Fransisco). The thing is, this book has beautiful illustrations. Which I don’t often think of when I think of nonfiction books–which I tend to like photographs in seeing how they are books about “true” things. But not everything to know about great white sharks can be adequately explained through pictures. Sometimes you need a super-awesome illustration of how a great white shark’s body is perfectly aerodynamic just like an airplane. In fact, you need an illustration of a shark airplane to get that point across. And thankfully this book happens to have illustrations of a shark airplane (and many other amazing illustrations that I never knew I needed when reading a book about great white sharks). There are also great bits that explain all about how a shark’s body works or what the perfect meal for a shark would be. And then there are the money shot-type of illustrations that show just why so many people continually are impressed (and tend to watch on shark week) these amazing animals. The text is great. But the illustrations are what will keep bringing young readers and scientists back for more. Well done....more
A little girl and a mouse live in the same house. But they can’t “tell anyone about each other.” If the little girl’s family knew about the mice the hA little girl and a mouse live in the same house. But they can’t “tell anyone about each other.” If the little girl’s family knew about the mice the humans would “get a cat.” If the mice knew their daughter was friends with a human, “they’d flee to a hole in the ground.” So both girls (human and mouse) live separate but similar lives. The illustrations especially showcase just how similar life is on a typical day when the families are winding down and getting ready for bed. The illustrations on top showcase the human family while the illustrations below show just how the mouse family’s activities are almost a mirror of the activities above. Of course things get tricky when each girl cannot get settled into bed without the help of their mothers. Both human and mouse go looking for the said parents when they discover that each mother has a secret as well…they aren’t the only ones with a friend of a different species. There are rich details illustrated into this fun story. Children will enjoy looking and comparing each version of the girls going to bed before the readers go to bed themselves....more
Oh what a happy day when two of my favorite picture book authors/illustrators have come together to make this book. “Drywater Gulch had a toad problemOh what a happy day when two of my favorite picture book authors/illustrators have come together to make this book. “Drywater Gulch had a toad problem.” And since Drywater Gulch looks like a town nestled in the midst of Goblin Valley State Park in Utah, the pesky toads that are a problem are not the toads that hop around…these toads are the typical Western outlaws that “never-say-thank-you outlaw kind of toad.” And quite the toad problem it is. These three rough, tough outlaws just about scared the pants off of everyone in Drywater Gulch. Thankfully “hope rode into town. [enter Kid Sheriff riding into town] Slowly. On a tortoise. [dramatic page turn] Give him a minute.” And although the town initially doesn’t believe that Kid Sheriff can help at all, he turns out to be smarter than all three of the toads put together…and the rest of the town too. It is amazing what a kid can do, eh?
So, the brilliant story is one that kids will enjoy (and I desperately wish I could tell at a storytime tomorrow), but what about the illustrations? Do not worry. The illustrations are in the brilliant hands of Lane Smith. Are there bits of money and coins that fly out of the bank explosion? Check. Are there layers upon layers of foreground and background images that perfectly frame the main illustrations of the characters? Double check. Are there detailed drawings of dinosaurs that could destroy a Western town? Triple check. Seriously, these illustrations are masterfully crafted so that readers could spend hours looking at all the details as they laugh along with the storyline.
This is one of my all-time favorite books for 2014. Here’s to hoping that there are more wonderful books in store for both Bob Shea and Lane Smith. The world needs more stories from them both....more
I love the idea of this book. But the younger ones who might pick this up right away don't always get the riddles. The older kids I know enjoyed the rI love the idea of this book. But the younger ones who might pick this up right away don't always get the riddles. The older kids I know enjoyed the riddles...but they didn't really care to pick it up first. But with a little bit of good book talking this book will find the right crowd. And then it will be great. ...more
I love the edition with the silver shiny bits (the moon, the water, the rain, the stars). The other version is good (the text and illustrations are grI love the edition with the silver shiny bits (the moon, the water, the rain, the stars). The other version is good (the text and illustrations are great) but the shiny additions just make the kids "oooh" and "aaah" a bit more....more
In this fun picture book kids learn to think about vegetables in a whole new way. For example, the book opens with a beautiful picture of an orange caIn this fun picture book kids learn to think about vegetables in a whole new way. For example, the book opens with a beautiful picture of an orange carrot and reads, “Carrots are orange.” Then the next page reads, “They are also purple.” and has a picture of a purple carrot. Then by turning the page you see all the other vegetables that can be (but often aren’t associated with) purple: purple asparagus, purple corn, purple peas, violet broccoli, etc. With each page turn kids can see vegetables in colors that they typically recognize along with a few surprises (oranges can be blood red, cauliflower can be green, pumpkins can be blue). Children who love to point out pictures when read will love this book…and will enjoy looking at how the world can be a bit different than expected. Fun....more
This is one of those soft, sweet books that you can enjoy while having a snuggle/reading time (especially if it is just before bedtime or naptime). WiThis is one of those soft, sweet books that you can enjoy while having a snuggle/reading time (especially if it is just before bedtime or naptime). With rhyming text and a calming rhythm readers find out where all sorts of little ones “lay their sleepy heads.” Such as bears, otters, or puppy dogs. But where is the missing sleepyhead that is missing from the bed with the teddy bear? Potentially where the young readers will be as well–“Asleep in Mama’s arms!”
Even though the text and the rhymes are great, the illustrations are as sweet and calming as a warm blanket. The colors on the animals aren’t just one solid color. For example the white bunny has dark brown/black bits shaded in to show which part of the bunny is in shadows and to help enforce the idea of it being nighttime. Also, there are dark lines going out from the moon to help show the light halo that is around light sources at night. Plus all the little animals just look hugable and like something that little ones would love to look at and cuddle. I seriously need to add this to my bedtime story time. Such fun....more
Nadine is a cow who claims to not be afraid of anything. The other cows ask her to prove it. So with a big glup she and the other cows venture into thNadine is a cow who claims to not be afraid of anything. The other cows ask her to prove it. So with a big glup she and the other cows venture into the woods. At first she is scared. Then she realizes that the woods aren’t all that scary. She and the other cows have fun exploring. But when the other cows head home for the night and Nadine decides to explore just one more place (a dark cave) she gets nervous. And now it is dark and she is in the woods all alone. With loads of energy for getting back safe and sound Nadine takes off. And finds her lost cow friends in the process. No other animals suspect that Nadine was ever scared…but they might when the cow friends start up their next scheme–tours of the woods at night, guided by Nadine.
This is a fun book. I like how Nadine shows similar emotions to many kids I know (the whole I’m not scared…but really they are once they stop and think about it emotions). Plus there are fun elements to the illustrations. (I love seeing Nadine and her other cow friends climbing trees or having the “hay” cake sit on a crate with “books” labeled on the side. Just fun details that make me like the book all the more.) The fact that Nadine really was scared and the others didn’t really suspect might go over some kids’ heads. But those that get it will think it funny that this clever bovine was able to fool all the rest of the farm....more
If you happen to have a dinosaur but don’t know quite what to do with it…there are a lot of options. From being a handy can opener to being a kite, AnIf you happen to have a dinosaur but don’t know quite what to do with it…there are a lot of options. From being a handy can opener to being a kite, And some of the suggestions are quite fun to imagine (like a large dinosaur looking at a robber’s face when being a “burglar alarm” to the dinosaur stomping on coffee, nuts, and potatoes to grind, crack, or mash them all). In fact, the illustrations are so fun that readers will need to look through the book multiple times just to see all the fun details. And then there is the fun bit at the end when readers are invited to think about what they would do if they didn’t have a dinosaur around (or if they happened to have a different pet like an octopus or a porcupine or Sasquatch or whatnot). This would be a fun story to read at a dinosaur story time (especially if paired with When Dinosaurs Came with Everything by Elise Broach)....more
With sweet little rhymes readers will learn all about books. How they come in all sizes and shapes and can be read anywhere. There are only small bitsWith sweet little rhymes readers will learn all about books. How they come in all sizes and shapes and can be read anywhere. There are only small bits of text on each page, so it is perfect for little ones with small attention spans. Also, there are lots of details and bits of contrast in each illustration which will keep readers looking at where all the books can be. Plus the message of books being perfect for “everywhere” will reinforce the idea to love books. This would be a great book to read in a baby or toddler story time as well as just before nap or bedtime (or anytime you want to cuddle with a little one). Such fun....more
The pesky wolf from The Three Ninja Pigs is still hungry (after all he didn’t get anything to eat in the previous book). But because he was beaten byThe pesky wolf from The Three Ninja Pigs is still hungry (after all he didn’t get anything to eat in the previous book). But because he was beaten by the Ninja Pigs (and quite a few other animals) he decides to sneak into ninja school and train. And train he did. Eventually he mastered everything and was ready to go out and look for a meal. While looking for some food he runs into Riding Hood. He redirects her to pick some flowers and then sneaks into Grandma’s house to wait for her. But unlike other versions of Little Red Riding Hood Red is equipped to deal with a ninja wolf…because she is a ninja too.
This is another great ninja book. The little ones I read this to loved the ninja references and the fact that Red and the wolf were so well-matched. And Granny is seriously awesome (who wouldn’t love a granny who does tai chi?!?). I also love the illustrations and how the book is layed-out. The different pages have panels of illustrations (similar to graphic novel panels) only they are angled and slanted (no boring rectangular panels here). This helps give a feel of movement and action, which is especially great when Red and the Wolf are fighting. Plus the expressions are pure genius. (I can’t tell you how much one little kiddo laughed when seeing the lipstick and Granny’s robe on the wolf.) This story has enough meat on it that even elementary school kids will enjoy reading or listening to it. And the preschool story time kids will all want to be ninjas after reading this book. Brilliant. Just brilliant....more
A little yellow bird is sitting on a perch in the middle of a swamp. Along comes a big white bird who says “pardon me” and wants to share the place toA little yellow bird is sitting on a perch in the middle of a swamp. Along comes a big white bird who says “pardon me” and wants to share the place to sit. Then a frog and a turtle join them with a couple more exclamations of “pardon me.” When a fox tries to interrupt the group with another “pardon me” but the little bird interrupts before the fox can say much more. The bird does not want any more people to join him. In fact, he wants everyone else to leave so he can enjoy his spot all on his own. Only…his perch might not be all that safe.
This is a funny story of a bird who is so caught up in his own problems that he doesn’t pay attention to what is really going on. The colors of the illustrations are bright with the little bird being a bright yellow that stands out on each page–even when a little squished by the other animals. The words “pardon me” are always calm and separated from the rest of the words. The little yellow birds responses are always squished and crowded (just like how the bird feels). And as a bonus the book also teaches kids the polite way to excuse yourself by saying “pardon me.” Some youngsters might not totally get what happens at the end of the book, but those grownups and kids who love This is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen will surly enjoy this book too....more
This book opens up with pictures of all sorts of animals (and snowmen and people) with green faces looking like they are just about ready to barf. InThis book opens up with pictures of all sorts of animals (and snowmen and people) with green faces looking like they are just about ready to barf. In fact, the green around the face is normal for illustrating that awful feeling you get when you want to barf. And as this book explains, everybody barfs. Archie, a little girl’s dog, shows some signs of what happens when you are about to barf. Then the girl starts to get sick at school and readers can see what some of the signs of needing to barf are for kids (and grownups). The one thing that is sad about this book is that it only explains one reason for why a kid might barf (getting a flu bug). But there are kids I know who might barf because they get car sick or might eat something that doesn’t agree with them. And babies barf all the time. The book does do a good job about helping kids realize that barfing is a normal part of a person’s (or an animal’s) life. But there is only one explanation given as to why to barf. The illustrations are great. The barf doesn’t look so gross that readers will barf because of seeing the barf (and thank goodness this isn’t a scratch and sniff kind of book) but it is gross enough that boys will like the gross factor of looking at the green faces and the “barf.” For any of the young readers who are nervous about being sick or barfing, this is a perfect book to read. And then they can barf with confidence (when the time is right) and hopefully “[w]ith any luck, [they] will barf on your math test.”...more
I loved Keith Baker’s LMNO Peas. And the 1-2-3 Peas was good too. And so I’m not surprised that I really loved Little Green Peas. Basically this is aI loved Keith Baker’s LMNO Peas. And the 1-2-3 Peas was good too. And so I’m not surprised that I really loved Little Green Peas. Basically this is a fun book with those cute little peas doing all kinds of things that have to do with colors. Each page has a large color with little green peas and objects that are the mentioned color. For example, on the page that features “RED” there are “red fences, red trees, red kites, and…little green peas.” One of the things that I love about this book is that the colors are large and bold. And kids that don’t really know about reading can guess the pattern of what colors will be mentioned at what time (and thus can help “read” even if they can’t read). And the little ones especially love looking at the “little green fellas” and what they are doing with each color spread. Basically this is a solid color book that does more than just the colors of the rainbow. It is one that can be read over and over again....more