Friday, January 31, 2020

Bear Came Along by Richard T. Morris - ESSENTIAL

Bear Came Along by Richard T. Morris, illustrated by LeUyen Pham PICTURE BOOK Little, Brown and Company, 2019. $18. 978-0316464475 



Once there was a river. When a bear falls into the water and starts to float downstream, he is joined by a frog, some turtles, a beaver, raccoons and a duck. Together they brave the waterfall, together. They didn't realize they were friends until the river brought them together. 

Oh! LeUyen Pham's illustrations are terrific! Bits of text carefully placed within the illustrations help the story move, and there's just enough to let the pictures tell the story. Children will love reading the adventure, and finding all the friends piled onto the log in the middle of the river. I laughed out loud at the faces of the animals as they realize there's no where to go but over the falls. Absolutely delightful - sure to become a favorite! 

 Lisa Librarian

Puppy Truck by Brian Pinkney - ADVISABLE

Puppy Truck by Brian Pinkney PICTURE BOOK Simon and Schuster, 2019 $18 9781534426870



Carter wanted a puppy, what he got was a toy truck. So, he decides to treat the truck like a puppy! He pets it, and puts a leash on it, imagining it barks and chases a squirrel at the park - puppy truck is so much fun, and they play all day.

What a delightful little boy - instead of being disappointed he makes the best of things and teaches his friend a thing or two, about resilience and imagination. Pinkney's illustrations are large and vibrant, telling more of the story than the few words do. A great choice for story time.

Lisa Librarian

When the Snow is Deeper than My Boots are Tall By Jean Reidy - ADVISABLE

When the Snow is Deeper than My Boots are Tall By Jean Reidy, illustrations by Joey Chou PICTURE BOOK Godwin Books Henry Holt (MacMillan), 2019 $17 9781250127129



It’s finally snowing! A little boy goes out to play and measure the depth by where the snow hits his boots. At first it’s only as deep as his ankles, but as it continues to snow, soon it’s as high as his shins, then his boots, then he gets a rescue from his mama and papa who are tall enough to easily walk in the deep snow. 

Darling illustrations highlight this sweet story about playing in the snow. The text is poetry, and, while not always rhythmically consistent, fun for a great read aloud. I loved the messages of fun and family, outside play and comfort inside. Also, don’t miss the dog and cat, as they enjoy the text, too.

Lisa Librarian

Here We Go Digging for Dinosaur Bones by Susan Lendroth - ESSENTIAL

Here We Go Digging for Dinosaur Bones by Susan Lendroth, illustrated by Bob Kolar PICTURE BOOK Charlesbridge, 2020. $17. 9781623541040



A group of paleontologists are working at a dig, doing all the things dinosaur hunters do, and then back at the museum, they study and put together the dinosaur they found! 

I loved that both the author and the illustrator knew exactly what they were doing. The text describing each scene is scientifically accurate, and the illustrations are super cute. The tools are authentic, even the small details, like drawing the discovery in their notebook and the vinac glue used to clean the bones in the lab. My daughter is a paleontologist and is completely gushing over this book! A highly recommended addition to your elementary school library, and a fun buy for any kid who loves dinosaurs. Includes additional detailed information about dinosaurs, dinosaurs on the end papers, and actions to go with the song for storytime. 

Lisa Librarian

Thursday, January 30, 2020

The Superlative A. Lincoln: Poems About our 16th President by Eileen R. Meyer - ADVISABLE

The Superlative A. Lincoln: Poems About Our 16th President by Eileen R. Meyer, illustrated by Dave Szalay. NONFICTION POETRY/PICTURE BOOK. Charlesbridge, 2019. $18. 9781580899376.,204,203,200_.jpg


Abraham Lincoln is a towering figure in American history. In this illustrated book of poems, Meyer introduces various stories about Lincoln and highlights aspects of his character. Each poem comes with a small note, as well, offering more historical information. The key focus on superlatives is a nice touch to tie in with a language curriculum. There is a nice timeline, author's note and bibliography in the back.

This was a difficult book to characterize but a fun and quick book to read. Its not fully a biography, but you get a lot of good info in each poem and note. This would be a great book for teachers to utilize in combining history and language arts lessons (the best way to teach them both!). I think fans of American History will also enjoy it simply for what it is.

Reviewer: TC

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The End of Something Wonderful: A Practical Guide to a Backyard Funeral by Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic - ESSENTIAL

The End of Something Wonderful: A Practical Guide to a Backyard Funeral by Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic, illustrated by George Ermos. PICTURE BOOK. Sterling Children's Books, 2019. $17. 9781454932116.


Pet lovers of all ages will, at some point, be faced with the death of their beloved pet. In this picture book "guide" to such an event,  Lucianovic breaks down for young readers how to deal with a pet's death by staging a backyard funeral. The guide is humorous yet heartfelt and, as it promises, practical! The book finishes with a hopeful promise about feeling happier and moving on as time passes.

Let's start by saying--I am not a pet person. But even my cold "no animals for me" heart was touched by this sweet and funny book. The illustrations are fantastic--and they lean on the slightly irreverent side at times, considering the topic. I just really love how the author and illustrator worked together to tackle this very real, very tough, topic on a level kids will love and appreciate. Two thumbs way up for this one!

Reviewer: TC

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Conceal Don't Feel by Jen Calonita - ESSENTIAL

Conceal Don’t Feel (Twisted Tale, #7) by Jen Calonita, 312 pages.  Disney Hyperion, 2019.  $18.  

Content: Language: G; Mature Content: G; Violence: PG.  



When Princess Elsa accidentally hit Princess Anna with a freezing blast, and Anna’s parents rushed her to Grand Pabbie, the troll king, Anna and Elsa were erased from each other’s memories and separated.  Now that Elsa’s parents have died, Elsa’s powers are starting to get stronger and she is having a hard time controlling them.  When Elsa is pushed too far, and her ability to freeze things gets out of control, the entire kingdom is frozen, and Anna feels the need to investigate.  Anna starts to remember Elsa, and vice versa, and if the two sisters can find each other and remember their past they can fix Arendelle before it is too late.  

I love Frozen and I love this reimagining of Anna and Elsa’s story.  It was fun to see how Kristoff and Hans fit into the story, and the heart of the characters and the setting stayed true.  The violence is PG because of the way Elsa was treated while locked up.  

Reviewer, C. Peterson.

Monday, January 27, 2020

I Love My Purse by Belle DeMont and Sonja Wimmer - ADVISABLE

I Love My Purse by Belle DeMont, art by Sonja Wimmer.  PICTURE BOOK. Annick Press, 2017.  $19. 9781554519545



Charlie’s grandma gave him a bright red purse and he loves it.  One day he decides to take it to school instead of his backpack. Thru his day different people ask him about his purse and why doesn’t he do things like the rest of them.  But each person he talks also seems wistful, thinking about something they love.

DeMont skillfully addresses the idea of a boy wearing a red purse without making it a gender issue – just a simple choice.  She also shows that pretty much all of us have something that we also want to show the world, but feel afraid to take that first step for fear of being ridiculed.

Cindy, Library Teacher, MLS

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Superluminous by Ian De Haes - ADVISABLE

Superluminous by Ian De Haes. PICTURE BOOK. Annick Press, March 2020. $19. 9781773213804



Nour was born with a glowing light within her. She skips and sings through her day. When school starts, however, the other children have harsh words about Nour and her light. Nour feels sad and does what she can to hide her light, until one late night her little sister needs her.

DeHaes’s illustrations are luminous and expressive. The story is almost perfect – I just wish it had included a final scene at school to bring it back full circle. Use this as a conversation starter about ways that we get jealous and attack others who are different from we are.  In fact, you could pair this with We Don’t Eat Our Classmates by Ryan Higgins.

Cindy, Library Teacher, MLS

Lawrence: the bunny who wanted to be naked by Vern Kousky - ESSENTIAL

Lawrence: the bunny who wanted to be naked by Vern Kousky. PICTURE BOOK. Schwartz & Wade (Random), 2020. $18. 9780525646655



Lawrence’s mom bunny is always dressing him up in too loud, too tight, too many clothes! No matter how hard he tries to talk to her about it, she won’t stop insisting he wear clothes.  Then Lawrence has a brilliant idea.

Lawrence is hilarious. The clothes his mother makes for him are hysterical! I especially love his ingenuity and persistence when it comes to dealing with his mom.  It is totally passive-aggressive, but on the spot and funny.

Cindy, Library Teacher, MLS

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Christmas Tree Book by Tomie dePaola - OPTIONAL

Christmas Tree Book by Tomie dePaola. PICTURE BOOK. Holiday House, 2019. $18. 9780823442386.



This is a reprint of a 1980 dePaola book titled The Family Christmas Tree. As a family goes out to chop down a tree and decorate it for the holidays, the parents explain the history of Christmas trees.

I love Tomie dePaola as an illustrator and author so I was really hoping to love this book. I liked it, but I did not love it. The book is packed full of interesting tidbits about Christmas trees and their history, and it has the wonderful dePaola illustrations. But its not that entertaining and my kids found it really long as a read aloud. I think this is a good pick for libraries to have for the sake of information, but its not a book you'd readily pull out for fun holiday reading.

Reviewer: TC

Emergency Kittens! By Jody Jensen Shaffer and Dave Mottram - ADVISABLE

Emergency Kittens! by Jody Jensen Shaffer, illustrated byDave Mottram.  PICTURE BOOK. Doubleday (Random), 2020.  $18. 9781984830081



In a tight spot?  Don’t worry – Emergency Kittens are here to bat their big, kitty eyes and save the day!

Kittens are, of course, adorable.  And they do a  good job of stepping in when the human superheroes can’t do the job.

Cindy, Library Teacher, MLS

Welcome to Kiss the Book Jr.!

Welcome! Kiss the Book Jr. is for board books, picture books, early readers, and chapter books.  Also, any novels and non-fiction that we ag...