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1. StoryMakers | Tish Rabe

STORYMAKERS - Tish Rabe (Dr. Seuss) Featured Image

You can’t be a writer, if you’re not a reader.
– Tish Rabe’s message for children

Tish Rabe is the author behind the latest generation of Dr. Seuss books. When the beloved author of classics including The Cat In the Hat and What Pet Should I Get? passed away, Rabe was tasked with keeping his legacy alive through his rhyming picture books. Rabe has been writing Cat in the Hat books for 20 years!

Tish Rabe is a masterful rhymer which is evident as she makes learning about subjects including space, health, and biology seem beyond fun! She writes the spin-off books based on the daily PBS Kids series, “The Cat In the Hat Knows A Lot About That!” It takes over two years for Rabe and her team — including illustrators Aristides Ruiz and Joe Mathieu — to create each book. The silly rhyming facts are vetted by scientists; down to the color of planets!

Stay tuned to find out Tish Rabe’s Three Rs, how she writes her rhymes, where she got her break in children’s television, and to learn more about how the books and television series go hand-in-hand. Also, Rabe has some great advice for your little authors!

We’re giving away three (3) bundles of books for this episode of StoryMakers. Each bundle includes a of copy of Tish Rabe’s picture books, LOVE YOU, HUG YOU, READ TO YOU; ¡TE AMO, TE ABRAZO, LEO CONTIGO!; OH, BABY, THE PLACES YOU’LL GO!; CLAM-I-AM; THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE SPACE; and THE I BELIEVE BUNNY. The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM on June 14, 2016. ENTER NOW!

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Click the image below to enter PBS’ The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That website. Play games, download printables, and get literacy tips for parents.

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ABOUT THE BOOKS

Love You, Hug You, Read to You! - Tish Rabe Love You, Hug You, Read to You!
Written by Tish Rabe, illustrated by Frank Enderby
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers, Board Books

There are three things I’ll always do … love you, hug you, read to you. The simple promise of togetherness offered in this board book is enhanced by interactive prompts throughout, encouraging parents to engage with their child while reading. Studies show that asking questions, like the ones in this book, helps children learn to read faster than if they just listen to a story. Love and literacy are gifts we can give to our children every day Also available as bilingual (Spanish and English) edition entitled ¡Te amo, te abrazo, leo contigo!


Te Amo, Te Abrazo, Leo Contigo!/Love You, Hug You, Read to You! - Tish RabeTe amo, te Abrazo, leo contigo!/Love You, Hug You, Read to You!
Written by Tish Rabe, illustrated by Frank Enderby
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers, Board Books

¡Te amo, te Abrazo, Leo Contigo!/Love You, Hug You, Read to You! is a bi-lingual book written in both Spanish and English. Studies have shown that asking children’s questions about what’s happening in a book helps them learn to read faster than if they just sit and listen to a story so this book features interactive questions in both languages. It also offers the opportunity for Spanish speakers to learn English and English speakers to learn Spanish!


Oh, Baby, the Places You’ll Go!
Oh, Baby, the Places You'll Go! - Tish Rabe
Written by Tish Rabe, illustrated by Dr. Seuss
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers, Board Books

Artfully adapted almost entirely from Ted Geisel’s work, this introduction to the world of Dr. Seuss is a must for expectant parents and new babies In simple rhymed verse, author Tish Rabe extolls the joys awaiting newborns when they meet the Cat in the Hat, Horton the Elephant, Yertle the Turtle, the Great Birthday Bird, the Grinch, and twenty-five other beloved Seuss characters. Written to be read aloud to babies and babies-to-be (“yes,” babies in utero ), the book includes a brief introduction by “Mrs.” Dr. Seuss Audrey Geisel revealing how she and Ted were fascinated by the idea that babies could hear sounds while still in the womb and might actually respond to the voices of their parents. A perfect gift for baby showers and newborns, Oh, Baby, the Places You’ll Go is the ideal way to nurture a love of reading and Dr. Seuss in the very youngest children.

I Believe Bunny - Tish RabeThe I Believe Bunny
Written by Tish Rabe, illustrated by Frank Enderby
Published by Thomas Nelson

Introducing the I Believe Bunny—a delightful new series that helps kids learn about believing, sharing, and putting their faith into action.

Children will identify with Bunny and learn along with him that God is always there to help. Prayer works! Little Mouse is in trouble and Bunny is the only one nearby to help her. But, Bunny is too small. He has to set aside his own fear and trust in God. By putting his faith into action, Bunny is able to help Little Mouse and save the day.

Not only does this precious book teach the importance of calling on God for our every need, it helps children remember to be thankful for God’s work in their lives.


Clam-I-Am
Clam-I-Am - Tish Rabe
Written by Tish Rabe, illustrated by Aristides Ruiz and Joe Mathieu
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers

Normal the Fish is hosting a seaside talkshow for the Fish Channel and the Cat in the Hat and Thing One and Thing Two are cameracat and crew. Among Norval’s special guests are his old friend Clam-I-Am (a shy gal who lives in the sand and likes to spit), along with horseshoe and hermit crabs, jellyfish, sand fleas, starfish, seagulls, and miscellaneous mollusks. Seaweed, seaglass, tides, tidal pools, dunes, driftwood, and waves make cameo appearances, too. “Warning: Beginning readers are apt to be swept away.”


There’s No Place Like Space: All About Our Solar System
There's No Place Like Space: All About Our Solar System - Tish Rabe
Written by Tish Rabe, illustrated by Dr. Seuss and Aristides Ruiz
Published by Random House Books for Young Readers

“Au revoir,” Pluto In this newly revised, bestselling backlist title, beginning readers and budding astronomers are launched on a wild trip to visit the now “eight “planets in our solar system (per the International Astronomical Union’s 2006 decision to downgrade Pluto from a planet to a dwarf planet), along with the Cat in the Hat, Thing One, Thing Two, Dick, and Sally. It’s a reading adventure that’s out of this world.

ABOUT TISH RABE

Wish Rabe has written over 160 children’s books for Sesame Street, Disney, Blue’s Clues, Curious George, Huff and Puff and many others. In 1996 — five years after the death of Dr. Seuss — she was selected by Dr. Seuss Enterprises to create The Cat in the Hat’s Learning Library, a new line of rhyming science books for early readers. A television series based on these books, The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That, airs daily on PBS Kids.

Ms. Rabe also wrote the popular Dr. Seuss book for parents-to-be Oh the Places You’ll Go to be read in Utero! and created her own character, The I Believe Bunny, which won a Mom’s Choice Award for Best Picture Book – Gold. She also wrote scripts for children’s television series including “Clifford”, “Clifford’s Puppy Days” and was the Head Writer for “I Spy!” for Scholastic Entertainment and HBO family.

In 1982, she traveled to China with Jim Henson’s Muppets to produce “Big Bird in China”, which won the Emmy for Best Children’s Special for NBC. Later that year, she became Senior Producer of a new science series for kids on PBS called “3-2-1 Contact”. During the five seasons of the show, Ms. Rabe wrote scripts as well as lyrics for songs including  “What Does Your Garbage Say?”, “Electricity is the Power” and “People are Mammals Too”.

Read more, here.

CONNECT WITH TISH RABE
Website | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

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StoryMakers
Host: Rocco Staino | Executive Producer: Julie Gribble | Producer: Kassia Graham

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2. Five Family Favorites with Sue Fliess, Author of Calling All Cars

Author Sue Fliess selects "Five Family Favorites" to share with readers ... Read the rest of this post

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3. Children’s Book Trends on The Children’s Book Review | March 2016

With the recent event of Dr Seuss's birthday, our list "5 Reasons to Love Dr. Seuss" is trending this month on The Children's Book Review. Other trending articles include hot new books and bestsellers.

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4. Video Sunday: Great Scott!

Ack!  Too many good videos, too little time!  We’ve an embarrassment of riches today.  The only question really is where to start.  And the only natural answer is with Obama’s nominee for the Librarian of Congress.  Not much of a question there, really.

Next up, there is beginning to be a bit of a tradition of authors and illustrators recording videos of how they got “the call” when they won the Caldecott or Newbery (I almost wrote and/or Newbery, which is an interesting near flub).  Last year we had Dan Santat’s video.  This year, Sophie Blackall’s:

At this rate it may behoove us to just give the medals to people who are good at making videos.  And the Newbery Medal goes to . . . Tyler Oakley!

Now let’s get down to brass tacks.  People, there are awards out there that go beyond the mere borders of this great nation of ours.  And the Hans Christian Andersen Award is the greatest of these (though the Astrid Lindgren Award gives it a run for its money).  Now they’ve made a video for us that goes through the 2016 nominees.  I adore this.   I just want to meet all these people.  Suzy Lee!!!  Now, weirdly, I want her to adopt me.  And Iran! How cool is that?

This next book trailer seemingly has an international flavor to it, but is homegrown Americana through and through.  It may also be the most beautiful trailer of 2016 thus far.

Thanks to educating alice for the link.

Earlier this week, Phil Nel posted a killer post called Seuss on Film.  The piece is “a brief (but far from complete) collection of Seuss on film!”  Turns out, it was somewhat tricky getting Mr. Geisel on the old camera.  Phil’s a trooper, though.  He found newsreel after newsreel and has posted them on YouTube for our collective enjoyment.  You should really read his posting yourself.  In fact, I insist upon it.  And just to whet your whistle, here’s a jaw-dropping 1964 discussion with Seuss in New Zealand where he improvises answers to kids’ questions.

As for our Off-Topic Video of the week, I give this to you because I love you.  Really, truly, deeply love you.

1.21Gigawatts

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5. Self-Help Author: Robots Are Taking Over So Learn Animation Before It’s Too Late

If you want to learn a new job in 3 months that'll make you lots of money, this self-help author recommends animation.

The post Self-Help Author: Robots Are Taking Over So Learn Animation Before It’s Too Late appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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6. My top ten Dr. Seuss books

I spent all of 2015 reading and rereading Dr. Seuss. I meant to write a top ten list the last week of December. But. Life happened...dramatically...as a few of you know! So here it is a few weeks late.

10. You're Only Old Once! Dr. Seuss. 1986. Random House. 56 pages. [Source: Library]

This one was new-to-me. I definitely loved it. This is probably the only one on the list more for adults than for children.

9. Because A Little Bug Went Ka-Choo! (Rosetta Stone) Dr. Seuss. Illustrated by Michael Frith. 1975. Random House. 64 pages. [Source: Library]

This one was decidedly NOT new-to-me. A favorite from childhood. 

8. The King's Stilts. Dr. Seuss. 1939/1967. Random House. 56 pages. [Source: Library]

This early-Seuss was new to me. It was a DELIGHTFUL book.

7. Green Eggs and Ham. Dr. Seuss. 1960. Random House. 62 pages. [Source: Library]

One of my favorites. 





6. The Sneetches and Other Stories. Dr. Seuss. 1961. Random House. 65 pages. [Source: Library]


I enjoyed all the stories in this collection. It has "The Sneetches" of course. But also: "The Zax," "Too Many Daves," and "What Was I Scared Of."


5. Sleep Book. Dr. Seuss. 1962. Random House. 64 pages. [Source: Library]

Love this "bedtime" book. It makes me yawn just thinking about reading it.


4. Horton Hatches An Egg. Dr. Seuss. 1940/1968. Random House. 64 pages. [Source: Library]

I love Horton the Elephant. I really, really do. 


3. Fox in Socks. Dr. Seuss. 1965. Random House. 72 pages. [Source: Library]

Need I say more than...
When tweetle beetles fight,
it's called
a tweetle beetle battle.
And when they
battle in a puddle,
it's a tweetle
beetle puddle battle.
AND when tweetle beetles
battle with paddles in a puddle,
they call it a tweetle
beetle puddle paddle battle.
AND...

2. Horton Hears A Who! Dr. Seuss. 1954. Random House. 64 pages. [Source: Library]

I love the moral of this one...and it's Horton. How can it not be on my list?!


1. The Cat In the Hat Comes Back. Dr. Seuss. 1958. Random House. 63 pages. [Source: Library]

Without a doubt my favorite. It is so quotable. 

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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7. Way Back Wednesday Essential Classic

Yertle the Turtle

By Dr. Seuss

 

Guess that famous turtle named Yertle hasn’t heard that there is a turtle soup shortage! Or maybe he has!

Yertle who longs to be King of the Turtles uses underling turtles to put himself above the rest. Higher and higher Yertle stacks these poor things, with Mack the turtle in the basement, so to speak. Imagine the pain and hunger imposed on the bottom rung turtles of this turtle tower?

I was recently listening to a news report while on vacation that mentioned a dearth of turtle soup on store shelves.

And why has this happened? Turtles are in short order, rare supply, and scarcely to be found. At least since they have been put on the endangered list, they can no longer be hunted, captured and cooked. Coastal developments, fisheries, pollution and climate change, all have a played a part in the depletion of the numbers of turtles. Turtle protection habitats for helping and recovery of these terrapins are in the news if you look for them. And that is good news for the Yertles and Macks of the world. Well, maybe just the Macks of the turtle tribe deserve the good news. Yertle has a ways to go in his redemption as this picture book tale reveals. As the adage goes, “Pride goeth before the fall.”

As an interesting  sidebar, did you know that during the Great Depression, turtles were consumed, and referred to as “Hoover’s Chickens” in the south? Wonder how President Herbert Hoover felt about that appellation? They must have been plentiful and tasty in a time of food lines across a country reeling from its economic woes.

But, back to Dr. Seuss’s Yertle, as the classic picture tale reveals rebellion rearing its head in the turtle tower among the ranks of those squished at the bottom of the heap. Will Yertle continue his ascent? Will Mack and the other terrapin tower partners rebel?

When finally “the moon dares to be higher than Yertle the King,” something has got to give, and Yertle’s collapsing tower is quick and calamitous, as he soon devolves into “King of the Mud.”

It’s a classic picture book read for young ones. For some it could be seen as a morality tale of building ones ascent on the literal “backs” of others. Or maybe a scientifically gentle reminder that “what goes up must come down.”

But my bet is on kids that may intuit from this classic read that how we ascend, or do better in the world, is just as, or much more important than, where we rise to.

 

 

 

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8. Ja Rule Performs a Reading of The Grinch

Don’t want to let go of the Christmas magic just yet? Listen to Ja Rule as he recites How the Grinch Stole Christmas! for BBC Radio 1.

The video embedded above features the hip hop star’s reading. Follow this link if you prefer a more traditional interpretation of this Dr. Seuss picture book.

Here’s more from Jezebel: “Everyone knows Ja Rule is a wonderful storyteller, as evidenced by classics like ‘Put It On Me’ and ‘Always on Time,’ a song about always being on time. Well, Ja Rule is also for the kids. Or is it Ja Yule?” (via Entertainment Weekly)

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9. Seuss on Saturday #52

Horton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories. Dr. Seuss. 2014. Random House. 56 pages. [Source: Library]

Horton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories contains "Horton and the Kwuggerbug," "Marco Comes Late," "How Officer Pat Saved The Whole Town," and "The Hoobub and the Grinch." These stories were published, I believe, in magazines throughout the 1950s.

Horton and the Kwuggerbug
First sentence:
It happened last May, on a very nice day
While the Elephant Horton was walking they say,
Just minding his business...just going his way...
When a Kwuggerbug dropped from a tree with a plunk
And landed on Horton the Elephant's trunk!
Premise/plot: Horton makes a deal with the Kwuggerbug, but, it's a deal that he comes to regret making because the Kwuggerbug isn't exactly honest and fair. The deal is this: The Kwuggerbug will give Horton half the nuts off the Beezelenut tree, if Horton will carry him to the tree on his trunk. But a deal is a deal, right? Will justice be done?

My thoughts: This is the "second" Horton story. It was published in 1951 in Redbook several years before Horton Hears a Who. Horton is just as LOVABLE as always. I love, love, love Horton as a character. And this one is just as great as Horton Hatches the Egg and Horton Hears a Who! Definitely not as well known perhaps. But if it had been published as a book in the 1950s, no doubt in my mind that it would be just as beloved.

Marco Comes Late
First sentence:
 "Young man!" said Miss Block. "It's eleven o'clock! This school begins promptly at eight-forty-five. Why this is a terrible time to arrive!"
Premise/plot: Marco Comes Late is the sequel to And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street. "Something" is happening on Mulberry Street once again, and this time it's on his way TO school.

My thoughts: This is a much shorter adventure for Marco. But I liked it. I don't think it would have been "enough" for a book of its own perhaps. But it isn't a disappointment either. It was originally published in 1950.

How Officer Pat Saved the Whole Town
First sentence:
The job of an Officer of the Police
Is watching for trouble and keeping the peace.
He has to be sharp and he has to be smart
And try to stop trouble before it can start.
Premise/plot: This little story is all about TROUBLE and how it can start out small but grows and grows. That's what the "moral" of it is, I suppose. But it is GREAT fun in the telling. And it's set on Mulberry Street.

My thoughts: I loved, loved, LOVED How Officer Pat Saved the Whole Town. This story also appeared in Redbook in 1950. Seuss signed a contract to have Officer Pat published as a book, but it was later replaced in the contract with the publisher with Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories. Here's one little bit from the story:
The trouble with trouble is...trouble will spread. The yowl of that cat will wake Tom, Tim, and Ted, Those terrible triplets of Mrs. McGown. Then they'll yowl a yowl that'll wake this whole town. When trouble gets started, it always starts more! Those kids with their racket and ruckus and roar will frighten the bird, and the birds will come flapping down Mulberry Street with a yipping and yapping!
The Hoobub and the Grinch
First sentence:
The Hoobub was lying outdoors in the sun,
The wonderful, wonderful warm summer sun.
"There's nothing," he said, "quite as good as the sun!"
Then up walked a Grinch with a piece of green string.
"How much," asked the Grinch, "will you pay for this thing?"
Premise/plot: The Grinch is trying to sell the Hoobub a piece of string....will the Hoobub be deceived by the Grinch's clever use of words?

My thoughts: It may be short--just TWO PAGES. But don't underestimate it's cleverness. Not that I love, love, love it. But it worked for me!

Have you read Horton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

What Pet Should I Get? Dr. Seuss. 2015. Random House. 48 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence:
We want a pet.
We want a pet.
What kind of pet
should we get?
Premise/plot: Siblings--a boy and a girl--have trouble deciding which pet to get. Their parents said, "yes" to one pet, but, not to two, or, three, or four. The problem? The kids have only to see an animal in the pet store, and, then they WANT it. This book is all about having to make up your mind...

My thoughts: I liked it. I didn't love, love, love it. But I liked it. It ends with the reader not knowing what pet they finally picked. I'm not sure I like the mystery ending. Is it wrong that I almost preferred the notes from the publisher to the actual text?! I found the notes from the publisher to be fascinating. In particular,
Dr. Seuss's first "pet" was a brown stuffed toy dog given to him by his mother. Ted--whose real name was Theodore Seuss Geisel--named it Theophrastus. Ted would keep Theophrastus for the rest of his life. The dog was often perched near his drawing board. In 1991, just days before his death at the age of eighty-seven, Ted gave Theophrastus to his stepdaughter Lea Grey. "You will take care of the dog, won't you?" he asked her.
Have you read What Pet Should I Get? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

I'll be posting a list of my TOP TEN books by Dr. Seuss later this week.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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10. Jimmy Kimmel Ghost Writes a Children’s Book on Behalf of Donald Trump

Did you know that reality TV star Donald Trump wants to write a children’s book? Late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel the took the liberty of ghost writing one for him.

In the video embedded above, Kimmel reads aloud from the Dr. Seuss-style verse story, entitled Winners Aren’t Losers, during a conversation with the GOP presidential candidate. Throughout his lifetime, Trump has been credited with authoring more than a dozen books.

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11. Donald Trump Stars in Dr. Seuss Parody Video

Have you been following the United States presidential race? The team at CollegeHumor drew inspiration from the political race and a Dr. Seuss picture book for a parody called “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Trump.”

The video embedded above features Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump in the role of The Grinch. Follow this link to listen to watch the antics of the original Grinch.

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12. Seuss on Saturday #51

Hooray for Diffendoofer Day! Dr. Seuss and Jack Prelutsky. Illustrated by Lane Smith. 1998. Random House. 64 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence:
I've always lived in Dinkerville,
My friends all live here too.
We go to Diffendoofer School--
We're happy that we do.
Premise/plot: Diffendoofer School is different from other schools. The teachers teach their students to think. And the teachers are all unique and have their own way of teaching and celebrating knowledge. But one day, the school is threatened by a TEST. If their students don't do well on the test, then, the students will have to go to other schools. Will the students do well on the test? Even if they haven't spent time especially preparing for it?

My thoughts: I liked it. I wish I knew how much of the text was by Dr. Seuss and how much was by Jack Prelutsky. The art is certainly different and unique and complements the text quite nicely.

Have you read Hooray for Diffendoofer Day? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it! 

The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories. Dr. Seuss. 2011. Random House. 72 pages. [Source: Library]

The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories contains seven "lost" stories by Dr. Seuss. They include: "The Bippolo Seed," "The Rabbit, the Bear, and the Zinniga-Zanniga," "Gustav, The Goldfish," "Tadd and Todd," "Steak for Supper," "The Strange Shirt Spot," and "The Great Henry McBride." All stories were originally published in magazines in the 1950s.

The Bippolo Seed
First sentence:
One bright sunny day, a young duck named McKluck
Had a wonderful, wonderful piece of good luck.
He was walking along when he spied on the ground
A marvelous thing that is quite seldom found.
Premise/plot: A duck finds a magical bippolo seed, but, unfortunately is led astray by a cat. The bippolo seed grants wishes when planted, but, the cat is strongly encouraging the duck to wish for more and more and more. Nothing good ever comes from such greediness, and such is the case here...

My thoughts: I liked it. I did. It didn't wow me with this is the best story ever. But it was good.

The Rabbit, the Bear, and the Zinniga-Zanniga
First sentence:
Once of upon of a time, way down south,
Lived a very big bear with a very big mouth
And very big teeth in his very big jaws
And very big claws in his very big paws.
Premise/plot: Can a rabbit outsmart a bear?

My thoughts: It didn't make the best first impression on me. But once the story really got started, once the rabbit started talking--quick-talking--it improved. I still can't say I loved, loved, loved it. But it was a nice enough story.

Gustav, The Goldfish
First sentence:
The man who sold Gustav the Goldfish to us
Had warned us, "Take care! When you feed this small cuss
Just feed him a spot. If you feed him a lot,
Then something might happen! It's hard to say what."
Premise/plot: What do you think might happen if you feed a fish too much?!

My thoughts: I really love A Fish Out of Water. Seuss's story came first, of course. Seuss's story rhymes. I don't know which is the "better" of the two. Because one is super-familiar to me, and the other is not.

Tadd and Todd
First sentence:
One twin was named Tadd
And one twin was named Todd.
And they were alike
As two peas in a pod.
Premise/plot: Do both twins like being "as two peas in a pod"? Maybe. Maybe not.

My thoughts: It was okay. I didn't especially dislike it. I just wasn't especially impressed either.

Steak for Supper
First sentence:
When I'm all by myself and there isn't a crowd,
I guess that I sometimes get thinking-out-loud.
Premise/plot: Do you know the consequences of bragging? Read Steak for Supper and find out!

My thoughts: I enjoyed this one. I did. It was very silly and fun. When a boy happens to "think out loud" that his family always has steaks for supper every Saturday night, someone--an Ikka--starts following him. The Ikka is soon joined by others--all with fanciful names, of course. They are all super-excited by the thought of eating STEAK. What will his parents think when they all arrive home?!

The Strange Shirt Spot
First sentence:
My mother had warned me:
"Stay out of the dirt."
But there, there I was
With a spot on my shirt!"

Premise/plot: A boy finds it nearly impossible to remove a stubborn spot from his shirt.

My thoughts: This idea was used again, and, perhaps used better in The Cat and the Hat Comes Back. I love, love, love that book. This one was fun, but, mainly because you could see where the idea came from.

The Great Henry McBride
First sentence:
"It's hard to decide,"
Said young Henry McBride.
"It's terribly, terribly hard to decide.
When a fellow grows up and turns into a man,
A fellow should pick the best job that he can."

Premise/plot: Henry McBride can't pick just one job he wants to have when he's all grown up...so he imagines having lots of jobs.

My thoughts: It was okay. I liked it fine.

Have you read The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it! 

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is Horton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories and What Pet Should I Get. I'll be doubling up for the rest of the year each Saturday.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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13. Seuss on Saturday #50

Daisy-Head Mayzie. Dr. Seuss. 1994. Random House. 56 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence:  It's hard to believe such a thing could be true, And I hope such a thing never happens to you. But it happened, they say, to poor Mayzie McGrew. And it happened like this...

Premise/plot: Mayzie McGrew shocks everyone--first everyone at her school, and, then later the nation--when a daisy suddenly appears growing out the top of her head. So many unanswered questions?! What's to be done?!

My thoughts: I had never read this one before. Was I missing out? Not really. The story is a bit out of control and all over the place. Which may sound like a typical Seuss story, and, in many ways--at least in theory--it was. It just lacked a certain something. 

Have you read Daisy-Head Mayzie? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

My Many Colored Days. Dr. Seuss. Illustrated by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher. 1996. Random House. 32 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Some days are yellow. Some are blue. On different days I'm different too.

Premise/plot: There's a color for each mood in My Many Colored Days.

My thoughts: I like the idea of this one, the premise of it. I like the exploration of moods and emotions and feelings. Of feeling many different ways, and, yet still being "me." I also appreciate the simplicity of the text. Some Seuss books are so very, very text-heavy.

Have you read My Many Colored Days? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is Hooray for Diffendoofer Day and The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories. I'll be doubling up for the rest of the year each Saturday.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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14. Seuss on Saturday #49

Oh, the Places You'll Go. Dr. Seuss. 1990. Random House. 44 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Congratulations! Today is your day. You're off to Great Places! You're off and away!

Premise/plot: I'd describe Oh, The Places You'll Go as a motivational picture book for older readers. Not that young children don't need motivation, but, the advice, in my opinion, makes more sense for older readers--grown ups even. You are the you of the title. The whole book is written in second person.

My thoughts: I like this one. Do I love, love, LOVE it. I wouldn't get that carried away. But I do genuinely like it. I like how it's motivational and uplifting all the while being true-to-life and realistic.
Wherever you fly, you'll be best of the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest. Except when you don't. Because, sometimes you won't. I'm sorry to say so but, sadly, it's true that Bang-ups and Hang-ups can happen to you. You can get all hung up in a prickle-ly perch.
Have you read Oh, The Places You'll Go! Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is Daisy-Head Mayzie and My Many Colored Days. I'll be doubling up for the rest of the year each Saturday.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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15. Best Selling Picture Books | December 2015

Ooh, the weather outside is ... perfect for snuggling inside with one of these best selling picture books. Snow, by Cynthia Rylant, is this month's best selling picture book from our affiliate store—it's a beautiful book.

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16. Seuss on Saturday #48

I Am Not Going To Get Up Today. Dr. Seuss. Illustrated by James Stevenson. 1987. Random House. 48 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Please let me be. Please go away. I am NOT going to get up today! The alarm can ring. The birds can peep. My bed is warm. My pillow's deep. Today's the day I'm going to sleep.

Premise/plot: This little boy is GOING to sleep. Don't bother trying to make him get up and out of bed.

My thoughts: I like it. I don't love, love, love it. But who can really argue with, "My bed is warm. My pillow's deep"?

Have you read I Am Not Going To Get Up Today! Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is Oh, The Places You'll Go 

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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17. Seuss on Saturday #47

You're Only Old Once! Dr. Seuss. 1986. Random House. 56 pages. [Source: Library]

 First sentence: One day you will read in the National Geographic of a faraway land with no smelly bad traffic.

Premise/plot: An old man is "stuck" worrying at the doctor's office--or hospital--as various tests and procedures are done for his check up.

My thoughts: You're Only Old Once is definitely a picture book for older readers. Perhaps mainly adult readers. It is clever, in places, and overall I think it's a book worth reading. One example of the cleverness is the eye test or the "eyesight and solvency test" which reads:
HAVE YOU ANY IDEA
HOW MUCH MONEY
THESE TESTS ARE
COSTING
YOU?
Here's another favorite part:
Dietician Von Eiffel controls the Wuff-Whiffer, our Diet-Devising Computerized Sniffer, on which you just simply lie down in repose and sniff at good food as it goes past your nose....And when that guy finds out what you like, you can bet it won't be on your diet. From here on, forget it!
Have you read You're Only Old Once! Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is I Am Not Going To Get Up Today. 

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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18. Suess on Saturday #46

The Butter Battle Book. Dr. Seuss. 1984. Random House. 42 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: On the last day of summer, ten hours before fall...my grandfather took me out to the Wall. 

Premise: Readers learn about Yooks, the "good" guys who eat their toast butter side up, and the Zooks, the "bad" guys who eat their toast butter side down. The book is a dialogue between a grandfather and grandson. The grandfather is essentially explaining the war--and the wall--to his young grandson. It ends on uncertain terms.

My thoughts: The Butter Battle book is a great example of a picture book for older readers. It is one of the books my seventh grade English teacher read aloud. I also remember her reading What Was I Scared Of? aloud to us! The Butter Battle Book is NOT anything like The Cat in the Hat or Green Eggs and Ham. This isn't a happy-cozy story to read to preschoolers. There's nothing funny or amusing about war about escalating hostilities between two countries. The subject is serious, and, it's well-treated, in my opinion. 

Have you read The Butter Battle Book? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is You're Only Old Once.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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19. Seuss on Saturday #42

I Can Read With My Eyes Shut. Dr. Seuss. 1978. Random House. 48 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: I can read in red. I can read in blue. I can read in pickle color too. 

Premise/plot: The Cat in the Hat is back in Dr. Seuss' I Can Read With My Eyes Shut. In this one, he's showing off--classic Cat style--about how great a reader he is.

My thoughts: I enjoy this one very much. I do agree that "you have to be a speedy reader 'cause there's so, so much to read." With such fun and silly phrases as: "You can read about anchors. And all about ants. You can read about ankles! And crocodile pants!" this one is just a delight.

 Have you read I Can Read With My Eyes Shut? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is Oh Say Can You Say?  

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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20. Seuss on Saturday #43

Oh Say Can You Say. Dr. Seuss. 1979. Random House. 36 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Said a book-reading parrot named Hooey, "The words in this book are all phooey. When you say them, your lips will make slips and back flips and your tongue may end up in saint Looey!"

Premise/plot: A book of silly tongue-twisters.

My thoughts: Not nearly as fun as Fox in Socks. Though I did like the one about bed spreaders and bread spreaders. Also the ones focused on Christmas like "Merry Christmas Mush" and "But Never Give Your Daddy a Walrus." Here's how the Merry Christmas Mush one goes: "One year we had a Christmas brunch with Merry Christmas Mush to munch. But I don't think you'd care for such. We didn't like to munch mush much." So I liked it, but, didn't really, really like it.

 Have you read Oh Say Can You Say? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is The Tooth Book. 

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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21. Cathy Goldsmith Named President of the Dr. Seuss Publishing Program

catinthehatCathy Goldsmith has been named president and publisher of the Beginner Books line and the Dr. Seuss publishing program at Random House. She will report to publishing director Mallory Loehr.

Goldsmith has been with the company for nearly four decades. Prior to this appointment, she served as the vice president, associate publishing director, and art director of the Golden Books and Doubleday Young Readers imprints.

Here’s more from the press release: “Cathy follows the path forged by Theodor Seuss Geisel (a.k.a Dr. Seuss) himself, who was President of Beginner Books at Random House from 1957 until his death in 1991. Cathy fondly recalls the days when Ted, as everyone called him, would hand-deliver his completed books to the Random House office and read them aloud to staff gathered together in a conference room.”

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22. Seuss on Saturday #44

The Tooth Book. Dr. Seuss. Illustrated by Joe Mathieu. 1981. Random House. 48 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Who has teeth? Well...look around and you'll find out who.

Premise/plot: Readers learn a few things about teeth. Most of the facts that you'd expect are towards the end of the book. (Having two sets of teeth, taking care of your teeth, going to the dentist, etc.) The first half is just pure silliness.

My thoughts: I didn't expect much, and I didn't get much. It lived up to my expectations perfectly.

Have you read The Tooth Book?  Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!

If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is Hunches in Bunches. 

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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23. Best Selling Picture Books | November 2015

Autumn is a beautiful time for reading. Award-winning Nana in the City, by Lauren Castillo, is this month's best selling picture book from our affiliate store—it's a delightful selection for fall.

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24. Seuss on Saturday #45

Hunches in Bunches. Dr. Seuss. 1982. Random House. 48 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Do you ever sit and fidget when you don't know what to do...? Everybody gets the fidgets. Even me and even you.

Premise/plot: A young boy has a terrible time deciding how to spend his time that day. Readers meet dozens of creatures called hunches. One hunch, for example, might be telling him to PLAY OUTSIDE while another hunch is telling him he should do his homework, while yet another hunch is telling him to go to the bathroom. Every few minutes readers meet ANOTHER hunch with another suggestion of what James should be or could be doing with his time.

My thoughts: I like the idea of this one better than the actual book. Some days are like that, in my opinion. And the book is easy to relate to in a few places. (Like the nowhere hunch who has him walking in circles.) But overall, it wasn't a satisfying, enjoyable read. I liked it okay. But it didn't wow me.





Have you read Hunches in Bunches? Did you like it? love it? hate it? I'd love to know what you thought of it!


If you'd like to join me in reading or rereading Dr. Seuss (chronologically) I'd love to have you join me! The next book I'll be reviewing is The Butter Battle Book.



© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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25. American Writers Museum to Open in 2017

American Writers Museum (GalleyCat)The American Writers Museum will soon open in the downtown Chicago area.

The New York Times reports that a space has been leased on North Michigan Avenue. The opening will take place in early 2017. The team behind this venture plan to install themed galleries, organize interactive exhibitions, host education programs, and put on special events.

Here’s more from the press release: “Showcasing the personal stories and literary works of diverse American writers, from Mark Twain to Dr. Seuss, the interactive, high-tech museum is expected to draw up to 120,000 visitors annually. The museum’s esteemed curating team and National Advisory Council are working closely with internationally renowned museum and exhibit companies in the museum’s development. AWM is also collaborating with 50 authors’ homes and museums around the U.S. – now AWM Affiliates – that will support its mission with author-specific knowledge and expertise and foster an exchange of ideas and experiences.”

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