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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Picture Books, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. A Child of Books

  Arriving on bookshelves in September (Candlewick) will be Oliver Jeffers’s and Sam Winston’s A Child of Books, and today I’ve got a little sneak peek. First, they have created one of those newfangled book trailer dealios (to be exact) for the book, which is above. (It’s always fun to hear that Belfast accent.) Also, […]

1 Comments on A Child of Books, last added: 5/25/2016
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2. Flora and the Peacocks by Molly Idle

Molly Idle is the brilliant creator (and choreographer) of the first two books about Flora, an expressive, if not always graceful, little girl who seems to find herself frolicking with birds of all shapes and sizes. Flora, in a swimsuit, swim cap and flippers, has danced with a flamingo. Flora has skated with a penguin. Now, in Flora and the Peacocks, Flora faces her greatest challenge - dancing with not one, but two peacocks.

For this dance, Flora has a fan and two elegant partners. As with the first two books, clever flaps change the plot of these wordless picture books with just a flip. Flora's fan and the tails of the peacocks flip and flap to change the tone as the three try to orchestrate a dance that leaves no one out. 

As you might expect, there are jealous moments, frustrating turns and even some stomping off stage. But, Flora and the peacocks find a way to dance together by the end of the book, which culminates in a magnificent gatefold that opens to a huge 18 by 33 inches. Besides being gorgeously illustrated, all three of Idle's Flora books are examples of masterful design and paper engineering that make these stories so readable and memorable. It's hard to capture all of the magic of the Flora books in words. Happily, Chronicle Books, the publisher of these excellent books, has made a book trailer!

Source: Review Copy

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3. A Dark, Dark Cave by Eric Hoffman, illustrated by Corey R. Tabor

A Dark, Dark Cave by Eric Hoffman with illustrations by Corey R. Tabor has the feel of an instant classic. Hoffman's rhyming journey of imagination is paired perfectly with Tabor's layered, playful watercolor illustrations and pencil drawings that have a hint of magic to them. Best of all, A Dark, Dark Cave has one of my favorite things to do with kids at the center of the story!

As the "pale moon glows," a sister and brother go spelunking. Hoffman repeats the refrain, "a dark, dark cave," throughout the text, creating a gentle suspense that builds with each page turn while Tabor's illustrations blend the real with the imaginary in a satisfying way that keeps readers guessing - are these two REALLY in a dark, dark cave all by themselves?

A light appears in the darkness, revealing that, in fact, the sister and brother are in a blanket cave! As a kid and a parent, building blanket forts is definitely one of my all-time favorite things to do. We even build blanket forts on rainy days in my library. But, sadly, for this sister and brother, the bright light means Dad coming in and asking them to find a more quiet game because the baby is sleeping. This could easily have been the end to A Dark, Dark Cave. Happily, it is not. There is one more imaginary adventure in store for these siblings, and more marvelous illustrations (and a change in palette) from Tabor!

I hope you will seek out A Dark, Dark Cave by Eric Hoffman, who worked with preschoolers for over 35 years before writing this book, and Corey R. Tabor, making his picture book debut. I read hundreds of new picture books a year (and almost as many old ones) and it is truly rare to find a book of this kind!

 Look for Fox and the Jumping Contest 
illustrated AND written by Corey R. Tabor 
Coming October 2016!

Source: Review Copy

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4. The Boy on the Page, by Peter Carnavas | Book Review

Life is about who we touch, who we love and who loves us back. This book is a wonderful way to talk to children about the grand scheme of everything.

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5. Publication Anniversary

 Celebrating a year of This Is Sadie.

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6. Picture Book Monday with a review of Toot and Puddle

I am lucky to have to some wonderful friends who are there for me in good times and bad, who make me laugh, and who understand where I am coming from. I miss them when I don't see them, and feel rich after I have spent time with them. Today's picture book is about a friendship that is similarly enriching and wonderful. As the pages turn, two little pigs who are very different, but who are also best friends, come to learn something about the relationship that they share.

Toot and Puddle
Holly Hobbie
Picture Book  Series
For ages 4 to 6
Little Brown, 2007, 978-0316365529
Toot and Puddle are a pair of pigs who live together, and they are the best of friends. One would think that they would have to be alike to be able to share a home, and yet they are actually very different. Toot loves to go off on adventures to all sorts of exotic places, while his friend prefers to stay home in comfy and homey Woodcock Pocket.
   One day Toot decides to go on a trip around the world. While he is gone, Puddle has a wonderful time at home doing all his favorite things. At the same time he gets to share in Toot's adventures by reading the postcards that Toot sends him from Egypt, Africa, the Solomon Islands, India, and many other places.
   However, even though he is having a good time at home, Puddle begins to miss his friend. He thinks about Toot as he goes about his daily activities. What he doesn't know is that Toot is having similar feelings.
   In this book the author has created a tale with unforgettable characters, illustrations to pore over, and a simple yet powerful text that is a tribute to friendships of all kinds.

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7. 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #484: Featuring Tarō Gomi

“Is someone standing looking over the ocean … just like I am doing now?”(Click to enlarge spread)   I’ve got a review over at BookPage of Tarō Gomi’s Over the Ocean, originally published in 1979. If you’d like to read about the book, I send you there. And if you want to see some art […]

3 Comments on 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #484: Featuring Tarō Gomi, last added: 5/22/2016
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8. Isaac and his Amazing Asperger Superpowers! by Melanie Walsh

Isaac and his Amazing Asperger Superpowers! by Melanie Walsh

| Storytime Standouts

Isaac and his Amazing Asperger Superpowers! by Melanie Walsh

Isaac and his Amazing Asperger Superpowers! written and illustrated by Melanie Walsh
Picture book about a child with Asperger’s Syndrome published by Candlewick Press

Written from the perspective of a boy with Asperger’s Syndrome

, Isaac and His Amazing Asperger Superpowers! is a cheerful, positive and reassuring picture book that explains how Isaac’s thoughts and behavior sometimes differ from those of his friends. Well-suited to preschool-age children or early primary classroom use, bright, bold illustrations are visually appealing and will be easily seen and interpreted in a group or classroom setting.

Friends, family members and classmates will discover that children with Asperger’s Syndrome may have different interests, energy levels and ways of interacting than others do. For example, they may like to bounce rather than play team sports or they may fidget with a toy in order to relax and listen in class. They may have difficulty understanding jokes or some in social situations. Insights are shared matter-of-factly, with respect for both the Asperger’s child and a child who does not have Asperger’s.

Isaac and his Amazing Asperger Superpowers! spread

Using meaningful examples and fun illustrations, Walsh helps young readers to understand that children with Asperger’s Syndrome have strengths including a great memory for facts, curiosity and a heightened awareness of sounds. She also shows the special relationship an Asperger’s child can have with pets and family members.

A great addition to a personal or professional library, end papers include a list of Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome links.

Isaac and His Amazing Asperger Superpowers! at Amazon.com

Isaac and His Amazing Asperger Superpowers! at Amazon.ca

Read our reviews of other picture books about Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome

Storytime Standouts Shares Asperger Syndrome and Autism Picture Books

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    9. What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,Plus What I Did Last Week, Featuring Sergio Ruzzier

    (Click each to enlarge)   This morning over at Kirkus, I have a sort of Fall 2016 Picture Book Preview. That will be here soon. * * * Pictured above is my favorite spread from Sergio Ruzzier’s newest picture book, This Is Not a Picture Book! (Chronicle, May 2016). I wrote about it here at […]

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    10. A Peek into Denise Fleming’s Studio

      Pictured here is a gelatin print from author-illustrator Denise Fleming. She’s experimenting, while working on some new books. Since she chatted with me last week at Kirkus (here) about her latest picture book, Maggie and Michael Get Dressed (Henry Holt, April 2016), I wanted to follow up today here at 7-Imp with some images […]

    3 Comments on A Peek into Denise Fleming’s Studio, last added: 5/19/2016
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    11. Hallmark Great Stories Award

    By Cynthia Leitich Smith
    for Cynsations

    The Hallmark Great Stories Award will recognize and celebrate the power of storytelling by honoring new children's picture books that celebrate family, friendship and community and that exhibit excellence in both writing and illustration.

    Annual nominations will be reviewed by a multi-disciplinary panel of esteemed judges. For the inaugural year, judges include Betsy Bird, Alfredo Lujan, Alan Bailey and Cheri Sterman.

    Eligible books include those published by publishers in the United States between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2016 and must be entered into the competition by the publisher. The inaugural winner will be announced in March 2017.

    The winning picture book's author and illustrator each will receive a special award medal and $5,000. If the author and illustrator is the same individual, the cash prize is $10,000. In addition to traditional distribution, the winning book will be available in Hallmark Gold Crown stores nationwide.

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    12. Good Night Baddies & Fairy Tales for Mr. Barker: Two new delightful twists on fairytale favorites (ages 4-7)

    My students love sharing fairy tales and they have so much fun reading new twists on old favorites. Two new favorites emphasize humor and downplay the traditional tales' darker sides, making them perfect for preschoolers and kindergartners.

    Good Night, Baddies
    by Deborah Underwood
    illustrated by Juli Kangas
    Beach Lane / Simon & Schuster, 2016
    Your local library
    ages 4-7
    With charming rhymes, Underwood creates a scene where fairytale villains come together at the end of a long day to share dinner and bedtime stories. The baddies really shine when given a chance.
    Baddies sit politely dining,
    no one throwing food or whining.
    All day long they must be vile;
    now, at night, they chat and smile.
    The evil queen puts on pajamas, while the wolves brush their teeth (well, their fangs). The sweet rhymes and soft illustrations contrast perfectly with baddies' reputation--who would think that the troll enjoys a bubble bath after a hard day waiting for the three billy goats gruff?
    "Evil queen, take off your crown;
    trade pajamas for your gown.
    Tuck your poisoned fruit away.
    Find Snow White another day."
    Children will enjoy recognizing favorite tales and spotting details from each in the illustrations. I absolutely agree with the BookDragon's review: "Deborah Underwood and Juli Kangas are a delightfully subversive team, proving even the meanest baddies need time to relax and recharge."
    Fairy Tales for Mr. Barker: A Peek-Through Story
    by Jessica Ahlberg
    Candlewick, 2016
    Your local library
    ages 4-7
    Young Lucy chases her dog through fairy tale lands, dodging bad guys along the way. Even before you get to the title page, young Lucy asks her dog, "Do you want to hear a story, Mr. Barker?" But the pup is distracted by a butterfly, and takes off out of the open window. When Lucy follows him, she enters one new fairytale world after another -- and readers must guess (along with Lucy) where she is.
    "Where are we?" asked Lucy. She saw a broken chair, three bowls of porridge, and a little golden-haired girl."
    Just as the villain enters the scene, Lucy knows that it's time to leave and invites her new friends to join her. Soon she's followed by Goldilocks, the three little pigs and Jack, with the three bears, the wolf and the giant all chasing them. Ahlberg uses the cutouts very effectively, engaging young readers and prompting them to wonder what's on the other side.

    In each new scene, she provides just enough clues for readers to guess which tale Lucy has entered. This encourages young readers to take part in the story, actively engaging with the text. Jessica Ahlberg is the daughter of Allan and Janet Ahlberg, whose classic The Jolly Postman is one of my all-time favorite fairytale mashups. Jessica told Publisher Weekly,
    “I think fairy tales are a great shared knowledge, and so if you assume prior knowledge you can play with expectations or make it into a guessing game, as I did in Mr. Barker. I think the fact that the tales are ‘universal’ gives the child reader power. I think it can be fun for them to spot changes, or mistakes, or to know what’s going to happen next. It gives them a bit of control, perhaps. Similarly, my protagonist is able to help the fairy tale people she meets, because she knows their stories and knows what’s going to happen before they do.”
    It is interesting that both books draw only from European folktales and fairytales. The illustrations show mainly white characters, although Ahlberg draws both Lucy and Sleeping Beauty with brown hair and slightly darker skin tones.

    The review copies were kindly sent by the publishers, Time, Inc. (via BlueSlip Media) and Capstone Books. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books. Thank you for your support.

    ©2016 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books

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    13. Harold’s Hungry Eyes

    I always like to see the work of Kevin Waldron. His newest picture book, Harold’s Hungry Eyes (Phaidon Press, May 2016) is funny stuff. It’s the tale of a hungry dog, living in the city, who is “insatiably hungry. All of the time.” The only thing he likes about as much as he loves food […]

    1 Comments on Harold’s Hungry Eyes, last added: 5/17/2016
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    14. Big Sur on Cape Cod

    I’ve just returned home from Big Sur on Cape Cod, a wonderful mentoring weekend for children’s book authors and illustrators organized by Andrea Brown and her most-successful-in-the-US literary agency, in coordination with Lisa Rehfuss. This event is held annually in California, and for the first time was offered here in New England (lucky us). The […]

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    15. Interview: Totally Talented Brian Lies

    I recently did an interview for WritersRumpus.com with Brian Lies, successful author and illustrator of gorgeous books for children. It was posted to coincide with the release of Brian’s latest picture book, Gator Dad. You can see his glorious artwork and read about him here. Bookmark

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    16. My Kirkus Q&A with Denise Fleming

    “I am pretty much the same person I was at age 4 or 5. I like the same things. I am still bossy and messy. Animals were my best friends then — and now. Still like to make things using bright colors. Abhor bedtime. Peanut butter, pickles, chocolate, and cheese and chips are my favorite […]

    2 Comments on My Kirkus Q&A with Denise Fleming, last added: 5/12/2016
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    17. The Airport Book, by Lisa Brown: Full of things to see and talk about! (ages 2-8)

    I love traveling, going to see new places and experience new things. But traveling with kids, well that takes a special sort of patience, humor and--above all else--preparation. I adore, adore, adore Lisa Brown's newest picture book, The Airport Book, precisely because she celebrates the adventure of traveling by airplane with kids, full of so many things to look at and so many stories within the main story.

    The Airport Book
    by Lisa Brown
    Roaring Brook / Macmillan, 2016
    Your local library
    ages 2-8
    *best new book*
    "Don't forget monkey!" a mom reminds her family, as they are finishing their packing. "Of course I won't forget monkey!" the dad replies, and kids will smile as the little girl announces proudly, "I pack monkey!" Right from the beginning, Brown engages readers with the story, encouraging readers to predict just what's going to happen when monkey goes missing.
    "Monkey monkey monkey!"
    "Did you forget to pack monkey?"
    Young readers will start by following the toddler's cry for her beloved monkey. With an adult or older reader, they will then read the cool, composed voice explaining the experience. I like to think of this as the big brother coaching the little sister through the experience.
    "Inside the airport you stand in lines. You stand in lines to get your ticket. you stand in lines to check your bags. There are lines for the restrooms. There are lines to go through security."
    Linger on the page for a while, and you'll notice that there are all sorts of little stories within the central story. Readers will have a great time choosing a character and seeing what's happening to them in the next scene.
    "You squeeze into your seat. Some bags go up top. Some bags go underneath."
    Brown captures the busy nature of airplane travel without leaving the reader overwhelmed. Part of this is the reassuring, matter-of-fact tone of the main narrator and of the parents on the journey. Partly it's the satisfying story arc, both for the main character and the smaller stories. She balances detailed illustrations with a few large, open spreads of the airplane flying in blue sky.

    I especially love how diverse Brown's airplane travelers are--in so many ways. The main family is multiracial, with a black dad, white mom, two brown kids. There are people of different ethnic and racial groups. There is a working mom, constantly on her cell phone. A dad is traveling alone with a little baby. A woman is traveling independently in a wheelchair. And yet none of this diversity draws attention to itself--it seems effortless and natural, and yet Brown carefully, thoughtfully includes in so many ways.

    Check out these stellar reviews:
    Illustration copyright © Lisa Brown, 2016, shared with permission of the publisher. The review copies were kindly sent by the publisher, Roaring Brook / Macmillan. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books. Thank you for your support.

    ©2016 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books

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    18. Nadia: The Girl Who Couldn't Sit Still

    Nadia: The Girl Who Couldn't Sit Still. Karlin Gray. Illustrated by Christine Davenier. 2016. HMH. 40 pages. [Source: Review copy]

    Premise/plot: A picture book biography of Nadia Comaneci.

    My thoughts:  First, I just want to say that I want--no, I NEED--more picture books about gymnastics. Or early readers. Or chapter books. Or, you know, novels. And while I'm at it, I'll put in a request for books about ice skating. A picture book about the 1996 U.S. Gymnastics team would be GREAT fun I think!

    Second, I just have to say that I really enjoyed this picture book biography of Nadia Comaneci! It is a very age-appropriate biography I must say. It is set in Romania in the 1960s and 1970s. (But the focus is never on politics or hardships or possible reasons why she might have defected from her country.) Readers meet a young Nadia and her coaches Bela and Marta Karolyi. She began doing gymnastics at the age of 6. Over half the book focuses on the 1976 Olympic Games. The book ends with her returning home after winning at the Olympics. She was 14 years old, I believe. I want to say that these days you have to be at least sixteen in order to compete at the Olympics. A timeline will catch adults up on her life story.

    One thing I did appreciate was the source notes provided at the end of the book. So often picture book biographies fail to show their research.

    This one is easy to recommend.

    Text: 5 out of 5
    Illustrations: 3 out of 5
    Total: 8 out of 10

    © 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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    19. Seven Questions Over Breakfast with Brianne Farley

      Several weeks ago at Kirkus, I wrote here about Brianne Farley’s new picture book, Secret Tree Fort, published by Candlewick just last month. When I write about picture books over at Kirkus, I always like to follow up with art about a week later here at 7-Imp. I can’t write about picture books without […]

    1 Comments on Seven Questions Over Breakfast with Brianne Farley, last added: 5/3/2016
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    20. Lane Smith’s There Is a Tribe of Kids

      One of my favorite picture books of 2016 thus far is Lane Smith’s There Is a Tribe of Kids (Roaring Brook, May 2016). I’ve got a review of it over at BookPage. That is here. Today, Lane shares some early studies and sketches, as well as some final art from the book. (Note: Some […]

    3 Comments on Lane Smith’s There Is a Tribe of Kids, last added: 5/4/2016
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    21. How To Be A Pirate

    How to Be a Pirate. Sue Fliess. Illustrated by Nikki Dyson. 2014. Golden Books. 24 pages. [Source: Review copy]

    First sentence: Ahoy, landlubber! Come with me. Board me ship upon the sea! Not a pirate? Don't know how? Ye can learn to be one now! Come in closer--I don't bite. A pirate ye shall be tonight!

    Premise/plot: The title says it all, this book "teaches" how to be a pirate.

    My thoughts: I enjoyed it. I enjoyed it so much more than I thought I would. I like the rhythm and the rhyme of it. It gets that part right at least!!! The plot is simple enough, and, in a way it's predictable enough. There is just something joyful and fun about this one.
    Rules for pirates?
    Let's just say...
    ye can throw all the rules away!
    No more toothpaste!
    Farewell, bath!
    once ye choose the pirate path.
    Text: 4 out of 5
    Illustrations: 4 out 5
    Total: 8 out of 10

    © 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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    22. Throwback Thursday

    From Do You See What I See? —“Up and down lines pull me up, up, up with them, until I feel as tall as a steeple and as taut as a stretched rubber band. I think of lofty trees, a lighthouse rising above the sea, a rocket soaring high into the sky, noble kings in […]

    2 Comments on Throwback Thursday, last added: 5/5/2016
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    23. What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,Plus What I Did Last Week, FeaturingIrene Dickson, Emily Gravett, and Kazue Takahashi

    — From Kuma-Kuma Chan’s Home:“I walk into his home.It smells slightly of bear.”(Click to enlarge)   — From Bear & Hare—Where’s Bear?:“There!”(Click to enlarge)   — From Blocks:Note: The text here is different than it appears in the book.(Click to enlarge)   Over at Kirkus today, I’ve got some new children’s lit novels on the […]

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    24. Review: The Mouse Who Saved Egypt by Karim Alrawi and Bee Willey

    The Mouse who Saved Egypt, written by Karim Alrawi, illustrated by Bee Willey (Tradewind Books, 2011)

    The Mouse Who Saved Egypt
    written by Karim Alrawi, illustrated by Bee Willey
    (Tradewind Books, 2011)

    One day in Ancient … Continue reading ...

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    25. 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #482: Featuring Isol

    (Click to enlarge)   Hello, dear kickers. I’ve got an alphabet book today, one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. It’s from Argentine author-illustrator Isol, who won the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award in 2013. Daytime Visons: An Alphabet comes to readers this month by way of Enchanted Lion Books. Isol originally wrote […]

    3 Comments on 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #482: Featuring Isol, last added: 5/8/2016
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