Monday, October 23, 2017

How to Wash a Woolly Mammoth by Michelle Robinson

Illustrated by Kate Hindley

Your step by step guide to washing a woolly mammoth.

Thoughts: Too funny! Washing a woolly mammoth seems to be about as much fun as giving a cat a bath. This will be a fun book to share with elementary students when I do outreach. The illustrations are just right for the story.

Themes: Prehistoric, Baths, Pets, Elementary

(Henry Holt, 2014)

Friday, October 20, 2017

Wolfie the Bunny by Ame Dyckman

Illustrated by Zachariah O'Hora

When her mama and papa decide to adopt a baby wolf, Dot the Bunny tries to warn them it's a bad idea. She remains distrustful of her "brother" until the day they go to the store to get carrots.

Thoughts: Another hilarious read aloud. This book was perfect for my wolf themed storytime although the youngest kids didn't quite get all the humor. I love the bold black lines O'Hora used in the illustrations.

Themes: Rabbits, Wolves, Siblings

(Little Brown & Co, 2015)

Thursday, October 19, 2017

I Don't Want to Be a Frog by Dev Petty

Illustrated by Mike Boldt

A young frog dislikes being a frog for a variety of reasons. He'd much rather be a cat, a rabbit, a pig, or an owl. That's until he meets a wolf.

Thoughts: This is such a fun book to read aloud. The young frog can be quite outrageous and the dad so stern. It's a great combination. The illustrations are colorful. I love the use of speech bubbles. They really engage the reader or listener and makes the book a great read aloud.

Themes: Frogs, Elementary

(Doubleday, 2015)

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Goodnight Already! by Jory John

Illustrated by Benji Davies

Bear is so sleepy. Duck is wide awake. Good neighbors they aren't.

Thoughts: This book is too funny. I can't wait to read it along with A Bedtime for Bear by Bonny Becker. It is a perfect pairing. The illustrations are bright and colorful. The use of little to no outline is a nice style.

Themes: Bedtime, Unlikely Friends

(Harper, 2015)

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Touch the Brightest Star by Charistine Matheson

This interactive picture book invites readers and listeners to participate in bringing night to the day.

Thoughts: I love Tap the Magic Tree and Matheson's second interactive book is just as fun. The actions are engaging and the collage illustrations are enchanting. I look forward to using Touch the Brightest Star in my next night themed storytime.

Themes: Night, Interactive

(Greenwillow, 2015)

Monday, October 16, 2017

Sheep Go to Sleep by Nancy Shaw

Illustrated by Margot Apple

Time for five sheep to go to sleep...but they can't sleep! Will Collie be able to help?

Thoughts: I love all the sheep books by Nancy Shaw and this latest will be a great addition to my bedtime themed storytime. The illustrations are soft, vibrant, and interesting.

Themes: Bedtime, Sheep, Rhyme

(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015)

Friday, October 13, 2017

How to Draw a Dragon by Douglas Florian

Part drawing lesson. Part tribute to dragons as pets.

Thoughts: Fun, fun, fun. I love dragons and I love Florian's childlike illustrations. They have definite kid appeal. Would pair well with various dragon poems.

  • “Dragon Tree” from Poetrees by Douglas Florian 
  • “Shopping at the Dragon Store” from I’ve Lost My Hippopotamus by Jack Prelutsky 
  • “Don the Dragon’s Birthday” from Falling Up by Shel Silverstein

How to Draw a Dragon also functions as an art lesson.

Themes: Dragons, Drawing, Pets

(Beach Lane Books, 2015)

Thursday, October 12, 2017

The Monkey and the Bee by C. P. Bloom

Illustrated by Peter Raymundo

Monkey from The Monkey Goes Bananas is back! He's still banana crazy and this time a bee gets in his way instead of a shark.

Thoughts: Just as hilarious as the first. I love the comic book style illustrations and minimal text. This book was a storytime hit. Would pair well with Bear & Bee by Sergio Ruzzier.

Themes: Monkeys, Bees, Almost Wordless

(Abrams, 2015)

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Beautiful Birds by Jean Roussen

Illustrated by Emmanuelle Walker

This beautifully illustrated ABC book focuses on birds...more than 26 because some letters warrant more than one feathered friend.

Thoughts: I can't wait to use this gorgeous book for my next birds themed storytime. The surprise narrator reminds me of Dogs by Emily Gravett. The illustrations are exquisite--bright colored and they draw your eye.

Themes: Birds, Alphabet

(Flying Eye Books, 2015)

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Marilyn's Monster by Michelle Knudsen

Illustrated by Matt Phelan

Everyone has a monster except Marilyn. She tried to be patient, but one day she can't help herself. Instead of waiting, she goes out looking for her monster. And it's a good thing she does.

Thoughts: What a sweet story. The idea of kids having a friendly monster is very imaginary friend/Monsters, Inc after Boo. I love Marilyn's spunk. Despite being told she can't look for her monster, she does anyway. Matt Phelan's watercolor and pencil illustrations suit the story perfectly. The monsters are especially well done. I look forward to sharing this books my elementary outreach later this month.

Themes: Monsters, Elementary

(Candlewick, 2015)

Monday, October 9, 2017

It's Only Stanley by Jon Agee

The Wimbledon family are trying their best to sleep, but odd noises and strange smells keep waking them up one at a time. When they check on the noises and smells, they find that it's only their dog Stanley.

Thoughts: I loved Jon Agee's book Little Santa and this book is the same. It's Only Stanley is so funny. The family's disgruntled-ness at being awakened paired with their nonchalant reaction to Stanley's nocturnal activities made me laugh with every page turn. Agee's illustrations with bold lines, muted color palette, and lovely detail complement the story exactly. I look forward to sharing this book at storytime and during outreach.

Themes: Night, Dogs, Elementary

(Dial, 2015)

Friday, October 6, 2017

Alice in Wonderland: Down the Rabbit Hole, A Modern Retelling by Joe Rhatigan & Charles Nurnberg

Illustrated by Eric Puybaret.

Exactly what the title says--takes readers through the first part of Alice's journey up until her conversations with the caterpillar.

Thoughts: Published for the 150th anniversary of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, this retelling will introduce a new generation of fans to the book. Down the Rabbit Hole would be a perfect read aloud the next time I have a Mad Hatter Tea Party or a Alice in Wonderland event. The end papers with their map of wonderland are great. The illustrations are colorful and interesting.

Themes: Alice, Classics

(Imagine, 2015)

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Once Upon a Cloud by Claire Keane

Celeste wants to give her mother a gift, but she can't think of anything. A nighttime dream adventure inspires her. 

Thoughts: Gorgeous illustrations and an imaginative story. Pair with Dream Animals, While the World Is Sleeping, Clara & Asha, and Dream Friends.

Themes: Moms, Gifts, Dreams, Imagination

(Dial, 2015)

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Hoot Owl, Master of Disguide by Sean Taylor

Illustrated by Jean Jullien

A hungry owl disguises himself to catch his prey. His disguises don't work until he sets his sights on a pizza.

Thoughts: Too funny! A great way to talk about owls being carnivores. I love the black background of the illustrations and the bold colors used with them. Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise is super fun to share with kids of all ages. Would pair well with Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds.

Themes: Owls, Pizza

(Candlewick, 2014)

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Chu's Day at the Beach by Neil Gaiman & Adam Rex

Chu from Chu's Day is back. This time he's at the beach and when he sneezes the ocean is all mixed up. Can he sneeze again and put everything right?

Thoughts: What a fun book! I especially like the mer-pandas. Chu's Day at the Beach is a great addition to my beach storytime. The illustrations are bright, colorful, and so detailed.

Themes: Beach, Pandas, Sneezing

(Harper, 2015)

Monday, October 2, 2017

Monty's Magnificent Mane by Gemma O'Neill

A vain lion realizes his mistake in time to save his friends the meerkats.

Thoughts: I love how Monty redeems himself. His vanity could have been his downfall, but he realizes he has something more valuable than a magnificent mane, friends. The mixed media illustrations are lively and fun with good use of white space.

Themes: Lions, Crocodiles, African Animals, Friendship, Meerkats

(Templar, 2014)

Sunday, October 1, 2017

By Mouse and Frog by Deborah Freedman

One day Mouse decides to write a story. The only problem: her friend Frog wants to help. But he's a little too excited and soon the story is a mess. What's a mouse to do?

Thoughts: I love By Mouse and Frog. It works on so many levels. Fun for storytime but also for using with older kids as an invitation for them to write stories of their own. The illustrations are lovely. I like the soft colors and the pencil drawings. I wish I knew all the references to famous children's books, but I only recognized a few. By Mouse and Frog would make an interesting lesson in children's picture books. Pair this with Dog loves Drawing by Louise Yates, Journey by Aaron Becker, and Violet and Victor Write the Most Fabulous Fairy Tale by Alice Kuipers.

Themes: Friendship, Writing, Drawing, Imagination

(Viking, 2015)