Friday, May 14, 2021

I'm a Hare, So There! by Julie Rowan-Zoch


After being mistaken for a rabbit, Hare goes into a whole spiel about how he's a hare and how different they are from rabbits. 

Thoughts: Hilarious! This book will be so fun to share in storytime. I love the speech bubbles and the animals with their bold black outlines. The Similar But Not the Same section adds another element to the book as does the find these creatures page. I think this book will pair well with Be Quiet! by Ryan T. Higgins, Fear the Bunny by Richard T. Morris, and What About Worms!? also by Ryan T. Higgins

Pair with any of the following for a desert themed storytime: Over on a Desert: Somewhere in the World by Marianne Berkes, The 3 Little Dassies by Jan Brett, and MaƱana Iguana by Ann Whitford Paul. 

Download activity sheets here

Themes: Hares/Rabbits, Desert Animals 

(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2021.)

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

I've Got a Tail! Terrific Tails of the Animal World by Julie Murphy


Book #3 of the I've Got series by Julie Murphy and Hannah Tolson 

I've Got a Tail! is about twelve different animals and how they use their tails. 

Thoughts: Another hit from Murphy and Tolson! I love short, informative nonfiction books with bright. colorful illustrations. They are great for storytime. The animals included in the book are all wild animals you might see at a zoo or aquarium. I love that the ending asks readers to think about what their pets' tails can do. The map showing where the features animals live is great addition to the book. My favorite animals in the book are Anna's Hummingbird, Common Ringtail Possum, and Arctic Fox. My favorite illustrations are the Spinner Dolphin, Giraffe, and Spider-Tailed Horned Viper. 

Pair with What's This Tail Saying? by Carolyn Combs, Who Has This Tail? by Laura Hulbert, Heads and Tails by John Canty, and Tails by Matthew Van Fleet for an tail themed storytime. 

Pair with any of the following for an animal body parts storytime: This Is My Eye: A New York Story by Neela Vaswani, any of the I Spy books by Edward Gibbs (with My Little Eye, Under the Sea, Pets, on the Farm, in the Sky), The Eye Book by Theo LeSieg, Fish Eyes: A Book You Can Count On by Lois Ehlert, and Eye to Eye: How Animals See the World by Steve Jenkins, The Foot Book by Dr. Seuss, Who Has These Feet? by Laura Hulbert, I've Got Feet! Fantastical Feet of the Animal World and I've Got Eyes! Exceptional Eyes of the Animal World both by Julie Murphy, Creature Features: 25 Animals Explain Why They Look the Way They Do by Steve JenkinsButts are Everywhere by Jonathan Stutzman, Animals Brag about Their Bottoms by Maki Saito, and Chicken Cheeks by Michael Ian Black

Themes: Tails, Animal Body Parts, Animals 

(Illustrated by Hannah Tolson. Amicus Ink, 2020)

Monday, May 10, 2021

I've Got Eyes! Exceptional Eyes of the Animal World by Julie Murphy


A sequel to I've Got Feet! Fantastical Feet of the Animal World, this book is all about thirteen different animals and how they use their eyes. 

Thoughts: Great nonfiction for the youngest readers! I like the mixture of common and less common animals in the book. After reading the book, I had definitely learned something. My favorite animals in the book are the camel, four-eyed fish, goat. The illustrations are colorful and appealing. My favorite illustrations are the tarsier, chameleon, and camel. 

Pair with This Is My Eye: A New York Story by Neela Vaswani, any of the I Spy books by Edward Gibbs (with My Little Eye, Under the Sea, Pets, on the Farm, in the Sky), The Eye Book by Theo LeSieg, Fish Eyes: A Book You Can Count On by Lois Ehlert, and Eye to Eye: How Animals See the World by Steve Jenkins for an eye themed storytime. 

Pair with any of the following for an animal body parts storytime: What's This Tail Saying? by Carolyn CombsWho Has This Tail? and Who Has These Feet? by Laura HulbertI've Got Feet! Fantastical Feet of the Animal World and I've Got a Tail! Terrific Tails of the Animal World both by Julie Murphy, Creature Features: 25 Animals Explain Why They Look the Way They Do by Steve JenkinsButts are Everywhere by Jonathan Stutzman, Animals Brag about Their Bottoms by Maki Saito, and Chicken Cheeks by Michael Ian Black

Themes: Animals, Eyes, Animal Body Parts 

 (Illustrated by Hannah Tolson. Amicus Ink, 2018.)

Friday, May 7, 2021

When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons by Julie Fogliano

This poetry collection takes us through the seasons (Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter). The poems take the form of journal entries. 

Thoughts: I can't believe it's taken me so long to review this collection. I loved it from the first time I read it. The journal entry poems are inspired. The poetry is brief but evocative and uses powerful imagery. The illustrations are colorful and detailed. My favorite poems are March 20, May 6, July 10, September 25, October 4, January 30, and February 15. I look forward to sharing a few of these poems during any of my seasonal storytimes. I think When Green Becomes Tomatoes would also be a great way to start a seasonal poetry writing project with students. 

Other Collections of Seasonal Poetry

(Illustrated by Julie Morstad. Roaring Brook Press, 2016.)









Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Hard-Boiled Bugs for Breakfast and Other Tasty Poems by Jack Prelutsky


Jack Preltusky's first new collection since 2013 does not disappoint. It's packed with more than 100 humorous poems that are exactly what readers have come to expect from Jack Prelutsky. 

Thoughts: Quintessential Jack Prelutsky! I look forward to sharing these poems with first and second graders when I'm able to visit classrooms again. I used to ask students to pick a number, but so many of them would pick the same numbers. I now put all the page numbers in a basket and have kids draw one out. My favorite poems are "A Giant Easter Bunny," "My Lizard," "My Elephant," "The Leaves Are Drifting," "The Kangarooster," "The Stir-Frying Pandas," "The Skigulls," "My Cow," "Fantelopes," "A Groundhog Speaks," "My Cows Have Stopped Mooing," and "We Are the Oceans." Ruth Chan's black and white illustrations perfectly capture the spirit of the poems. 

Other Books by Jack Prelutsky That I've Reviewed: 

(Illustated by Ruth Chan. Greenwillow Books, 2021.)

Monday, May 3, 2021

Book's Big Adventure by Adam Lehrhaupt


From the book's point of view, readers get a look at the lifespan of a book. 

Thoughts: As a librarian, I love the idea behind this book. What does happen to a book after it's discarded from the library? I found Book's Big Adventure to be accurate. The illustrations are colorful and detailed. I especially like how Book changes throughout the story. I have the seed of an idea to start a Flat Stanley type photo program with books and their adventures. I think it would work well for summer. The author's note and suggestions of places to donate books extend the story. I look forward to using this book in storytime. Pair with any of the titles listed below for a storytime focused on books, reading, and libraries. 

More Picture Books about Books, Reading, or Libraries

Themes: Books, Libraries, Reading 

(Illustrated by Rahele Jomepour Bell. Simon and Schuster, 2021.)

Friday, April 30, 2021

Anonymouse by Vikki VanSickle


An artistic city mouse leaves his art all over the city. Even though his art fades and nothing new appears, he has inspired the other animals in the city. 

Thoughts: A fun book about animals in the city and art! I love the monochromatic illustrations with those splashes of hot pink throughout to denote Anonymouse's art. Pair with any of the books listed below for an art themed storytime. 

Other Art Themed Picture Books: 

Find some activity suggestions for Anonymouse here. Author Vikki VanSickle challenges readers to participate in The Anonymouse Challenge. Download activity sheets here. Watch the author reading Anonymouse here

Themes: Art, Animals, Mice

 (Illustrated by Anna Pirolli. Tundra, 2021.)