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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Tilbury House, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 12 of 12
1. Giving Thanks with Author Pat Brisson + Book Giveaway

Dear Friends,

Please welcome my dear friend Pat Brisson, whose short post reminds us all to be thankful for the Food We Eat! Pat is always an inspiration for me. Just seeing her smiling face makes me want to be kinder and more mindful of others.

Pat has generously donated an autographed copy of her book, The Food We Eat: from farm to table for the comment contest. For a chance to win, simply leave a comment about giving thanks.

Author Pat Brisson shares about the writing of her picture book: Before We Eat: from farm to table

I have long felt that Thanksgiving was the most spiritual of all American holidays because it’s not cluttered up with stuff but is all about getting together with family to share a meal. And give thanks for all our blessings. And although Before We Eat: from farm to table is not specifically about Thanksgiving, it’s an appropriate book to talk about in the Thanksgiving season because it’s about being mindful, when we sit down to share a meal with family, that a lot of people worked very hard to help us get food to our tables.

I grew up with the tradition of saying grace before meals and this book started out as a grace with the words Bless the one who did this and Bless the one who did that. My editor at Tilbury House, Audrey Maynard, asked if I would consider changing Bless to Thank. She thought it would give the book broader appeal. So I did, and it became a sort of secular grace – a moment of thankful awareness of, not only the workers in the fields, but also the ones packing the crates and checking weights and driving the produce to the stores and all the clerks who sell the food to us.

When Audrey said they were thinking of an illustrator who did woodblock prints to do the illustration. I said, “Oh, like Mary Azarian?” “That’s who we’ve sent it to," she told me. I was stunned. I LOVED Mary Azarian’s art and – be still my heart – she agreed to do it! Came out of retirement to do it! I was thrilled. Mary’s striking art takes my words to another level. Her prints are both strong and tender and offer so much for the youngest readers to explore on the page. If I never do another book (a strong possibility in this current difficult market) I will feel like I’m going out on a high note.

(Milk doesn't just appear in your refrigerator, nor do apples grow in the bowl on the kitchen counter.)

“A simple poem thanking the people who grow, transport, sell and prepare our food is transformed by Azarian’s bright woodcuts... A warm celebration of both small farms and the idea that it takes a village to feed a child. (Picture book. 2-6)” (Kirkus)

Illustration from Before We Eat
 “The  book is a thoughtful examination of where food comes from― that is before is gets to the grocery store.  …Pages show people engaged in every manner of food production: plowing, planting, harvesting, milking, egg gathering, packing and weighing crates, driving delivery trucks and cashiering at the grocery store.  It is a wonderfully inclusive and honest way to view food acquisition.” (Jennifer Prince - Children’s Book Review, Citizen-Times, Ashville NC)

Pat Brisson is the author of 20 books for young readers, including The Summer My Father Was Ten and Sometimes We Were Brave (both from Boyds Mills Press). A graduate of Rutgers University, she is a former elementary school teacher, school librarian, and public-library reference librarian. Pat lives in New Jersey with her husband. 

Artist Mary Azarian is the Caldecott-Medal winning illustrator of Snowflake Bentley, written by Jacqueline Briggs Martin (1999, Houghton Mifflin). She created the pictures for Before We Eat by first carving the pictures in wood (in reverse!) and then printing them with ink onto paper before adding the color with watercolor paints. She lives and creates her art on a hilltop farm in Vermont.

Author Pat Brisson and Artist Mary Azarian
To learn more about Pat and her books, check out her website: www.patbrisson.com  
To learn more about the  publisher of Before We Eat, click on the link: tilburyhouse.com

Thank you, dear Pat, for this thoughtful reminder to give thanks. Thank you, dear reader for leaving a comment about what you are thankful for. The winner will be announced on November 29. ~Clara

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2. Snow! – Picture-book reading list from around the world

Snow – love it or dread it, I think most adults would agree at least that for children there’s something very special about it. And there are also some very special picture books around too. Here, in no particular order, is a small selection of snowy stories set around the … Continue reading ...

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3. Escaping Conflict, Seeking Peace: Picture books that relate refugee stories, and their importance

This article was a presentation given at the 2012 IBBY Congress in London, first posted here and developed from a PaperTigers.org Personal View, “Caught up in Conflict: Refugee stories about and for young people“.
A bibliography with links to relevant websites is listed by title can be … Continue reading ...

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4. New book: KUNU'S BASKET: A STORY FROM INDIAN ISLAND, by Lee DeCora Francis

[Editor's Note: Are you looking for information about the shut-down of the Mexican American Studies classes at Tucson Unified School District? A chronological list of links to AICL's coverage of the shut-down is here. The best source for daily updates out of Tucson is blogger David Abie Morales at Three Sonorans.]


Put Kunu's Basket: A Story from Indian Island on your to-be-ordered list. Written by Lee DeCora Francis (she's Penobscot and HoChunk), it is a beautifully written and illustrated picture book about a young Penobscot boy named Kunu who is learning how to make the baskets that the men in his tribal nation have made for generations. A huge plus is that book is set in the present day.

The story opens with Kunu sitting at the table in his house, working with ash strips that he is trying to weave into a basket. Frustrated, he takes the ash strips with him outside and sits on a log. Muhmum (his grandfather) is sitting on his porch next door and goes over to Kunu.

Over the next pages, Muhmum helps Kunu make his basket. In that process, Kunu learns a bit of family and tribal history, and he learns about patience, too.

Susan Drucker's illustrations of Kunu, his family, their house, and the Maine landscape are a terrific compliment to the story. At her website, she's posted many of the illustrations. Here's one:

I hope Lee DeDora Francis writes some more books. She's got a knack for seamlessly presenting the story and the tribal information necessary without sounding didactic. She lets the narrative do some of that work for her. Some writers put the words into the mouth of the character and that doesn't work. It yanks the reader (me) out of the story. Here's an example. This is the conversation and text that follows the moment when Muhmum goes to Kunu, sitting on the log, frustrated:

"What's wrong, Grandson? Why the sad face?"

"Well, I just want to make baskets like you and my dad. I keep trying, but I can't do it."

Muhmum smiled. All the men in the family made baskets. It was something that they were known for on the island. He was glad to see Kunu with the ash strips in his hands.

See? You and I learn something that Kunu and Muhmum know. If the author had inserted that information into words spoken by Muhmum, it wouldn't work. Later, that information is in Muhmum's words, but the context is right for it. A step in the basket-making process is for Kunu to make a rim. It is hard to do, and Muhmum offers to help Kunu with that step:

Kunu thought for a few moments. He pointed to the pack basket in the corner and asked, "Did anyone help you with the rim on your basket?"

"Yes, my grandfather," replied Muhmum.

Kunu kept listening.

"Basket making is something that the sons in our family have learned from our fathers and grandfathers going back a long, long way. My grandfather taught

0 Comments on New book: KUNU'S BASKET: A STORY FROM INDIAN ISLAND, by Lee DeCora Francis as of 3/6/2012 10:22:00 AM
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5. Blog Tour and Book Giveaway: One of Us (Bravely Be You!)

With this Tilbury House blog tour for One of Us, we are celebrating the theme “bravely be you!” The picture book, One of Us written by Peggy Moss and illustrated by Penny Weber is the story of Roberta who is starting a new school and trying to fit in. First, Roberta befriends the straight-up hair girls, and they tell her, “You are one of us!” until she does something different. Then she goes on the monkey bars, and those kids tell her, “You are one of us.” After she goes from group to group to group, she finally finds a group that likes to be different from each other.

**For a special treat, we have an interview with author Mitali Perkins, who has written books such as Bamboo People and Secret Keeper. Anyone who leaves a comment or question on today’s post will be entered to win one free copy of either One of Us by Peggy Moss or a signed copy of Rickshaw Girl by Mitali Perkins. Winners will be chosen randomly from the comments on Monday morning. Now on to the interview. . .

Margo: In the picture book, ONE OF US, which we are celebrating today, this theme stands out in the wonderful text and lively, bright illustrations: “bravely be you.” How do you incorporate this theme into your own life?

Mitali: I love that statement. I want it on a t-shirt, please. It takes courage to be yourself, doesn’t it? For me, it means celebrating both sides of my hyphen as a Bengali-American.

Margo: I would buy a t-shirt like that! How do you incorporate “bravely be you” into your work?

Mitali: I try to model that hyphenated life–with all of its strengths and struggles–for the next generation as I speak and write for young people. I also try to speak prophetically into the mainstream of children’s publishing by staying close to the margins as much as possible. On my blog (mitaliblog.com), I raise issues about life “between cultures,” as I call it, review books, and host authors who might otherwise get overlooked.

Margo: Your blog sounds like a place where anyone can be free to be herself or himself. That’s awesome! Your next book is Bamboo People, which is due out July 1, 2010 from Charlesbridge. Tell us about this book–who should read it, a quick plot summary, and themes in the book.

Mitali: Who should read it? I hope adults and children ages 10 and up will enjoy this coming-of-age story and learn about the situation in modern-day Burma. The book features two main characters, Chiko and Tu Reh. Chiko isn’t a fighter by nature. He’s a book-loving Burmese boy whose father, a doctor, is in prison for resisting the government. Tu Reh, on the other hand, wants to fight for freedom after watching Burmese soldiers destroy his Karenni family’s home and bamboo fields. Timidity becomes courage and anger becomes compassion as both boys are changed by their chance meeting in the jungles along the Thai-Burma border. You may find out more at

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6. Special Sunday: Tilbury House Announces Bear-ly There Winners

bearly_there_cover Today, I got an exciting email that one of the comments on this blog won a prize in Tilbury House’s Bear-ly There blog tour! Yea! Yea! Yea! Jennifer F. left a comment on the post about Bear-ly There, and she has won an original sketch by Rebekah Raye. Tilbury House will be sending that to her shortly. I want to thank everyone for leaving comments–it is always encouraging to the author and to me as a blogger when we see comments. I also want to thank Tilbury House for a great contest with exciting prizes. Rebekah is an amazing artist!

If you are interested in buying Bear-ly There or any of the other books written or illustrated by Rebekah, please check out the original post!

Thanks for stopping by and reading this Special Sunday post!

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7. Tuesday Tales: Bear-ly There by Rebekah Raye (Book Giveaway Contest and Author Interview)

Becky_Goose_Portrait I am excited to host author and illustrator Rebekah Raye on Read These Books and Use Them today with her new book Bear-ly There, published by Tilbury House. Along with this great publishing company, I’ve got a lot to share with you today, so let’s get started!

CONTEST! CONTEST! FABULOUS CONTEST!!!!! **First of all, Tilbury House is offering some fabulous prizes for ten winners. You can win by commenting on my blog and on any of the other blogs on the tour. You can also win by participating on Twitter! Here’s more information about the contest:

From Tilbury House: We will draw 9 lucky winners from all of those who comment on these participating blog posts, from October 16-30, to win one of the following prizes:

Winners #1 & 2 = A set of four art notecards (two sets available)
Winner #3 = A signed wildlife art print
Winners #4, 5, 6 = An original sketch from Bear-ly There, The Very Best Bed, or Thanks to the Animals (See www.rebekahraye.com for samples of her gorgeous artwork!)
Winners #7, 8, 9 = A copy of Bear-ly There, The Very Best Bed, or Thanks to the Animals, signed by Rebekah.

And, anyone who participates in the Twitter Book Party or posts anything on Twitter about the tour, using the hashtag #BearlyThere from October 15-30, will be entered to win a complete set of Bear-ly There, The Very Best Bed, and Thanks to the Animals, all signed by Rebekah! Winners for all 10 prizes will be announced on Oct. 31. US/Canada addresses only.

Bear-ly There, a beautifully-illustrated picture book, is the story of Charlie and a bear who wanted a snack in Charlie’s family’s storage shed. Charlie figures out how to get rid of the bear and get him back to eating blueberries in the forest like he should. The books shows children in a kind and gentle way that wildlife belongs in the wild where everyone, including the animal, is safe. I am lucky enough to have the opportunity to interview, Rebekah Raye, the author, about her book Bear-ly There.

Margo: Hi Rebekah, thanks for stopping by on your tour. I’m sure many people who read your book wonder this: where did you get the idea for Bear-ly There?

Rebekah: It was really based on a true story. Last summer, I had made an appointment with Tilbury House Publishing to come in and discuss some new concepts and ideas I had about another book. I had a couple of ideas that I really liked. The very night before my meeting, we had an incredible first-time black bear visit in the moonlight just at dawn in our backyard–that was both exciting and frightening. I went into my meeting with Jennifer Bunting, Audrey Maynard, and Karen Fiske. I felt very comfortable talking to them about my new ideas but was still bubbling over with excitement about the bear visit that it seemed to be prominent in our conversation. They were quiet as they listened to all of my story summaries. Then after a pause, they thought we should do the story of the bear visit.

Margo: Well, thank goodness for that bear visit then, or we wouldn’t have this delightful story now! Your illustrations are absolutely beautiful. How do you make your illustrations look so real? Do you use models? Photos? Your imagination?

Rebekah: I seem to be most inspired by events, sightings, and actual experiences that I can express in a painting, sculpture, or story. I have learned so much about the animals I paint. I am fascinated by what they look like and how they act. It is important to me to give the animal dignity and respect and love the animal as it is. So, I want my paintings to be a close likeness. For Bear-ly There, my husband, a photographer, was able to photograph the bear that visited us on several different occasions, and I had lots of reference from his photographs. I also had such a memory of the night he came to visit us. My two geese were always modeling for me; the rest of the critters were from past sightings.

Margo: Your paintings are definitely a close likeness, and I love that your two geese model for you! :) Please briefly explain your writing process for us.

Rebekah: My dearest older friend, Eggie Razi, once told me, “Just do the pictures first, and then imagine telling your story to your children and grandson, and the words will come.” She was right. I love to think of the images first, the characters. Then I take a tape recorder and speak about what’s happening, and it seems to help me write like I was verbally telling the story. I then sketch out sort of a story board. I can then start to see the story change, build. And thank goodness for editors.

Margo: What an interesting writing process. I wonder if a lot of author/illustrators work that way. I think I found a new question to ask. What are two or three lesson plan ideas that teachers can use with Bear-ly There?

Rebekah: I would recommend doing research about the different foods bears like to eat. It is fascinating to note they eat the very things that are bad for our gardens and trees like cut worms and tent caterpillars. I have always loved to combine art and science, so I would have the children draw the bear eating the particular plants and insects–making a poster of the different plants in a detailed drawing, of course with the bear. Maybe ink markers and pastel pencils. I also recommend everyone to visit www.tilburyhouse.com because they specify classroom activities related to the books under TEACHERS TAKE NOTE.

Margo: Rebekah, thanks for letting us know about the Tilbury House site and their resources for teachers. We wish you much luck with your book, your tour, and your future projects!

Don’t forget to leave a comment below to be entered into Tilbury House’s awesome contest. To enter more than once, go to these other blog tour stops for Rebekah and make a comment!

More blog stops for Rebekah:

Oct. 21 – Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – http://insatiablereaders.blogspot.com/
Oct. 22 – On My Bookshelf – http://hollybooknotes.blogspot.com/
Oct. 23 – Nature Moms – http://www.naturemoms.com/blog/
Oct. 24 – Tilbury House on Facebook – http://tinyurl.com/c2cnav
Oct. 25 – Ready Set Read – http://readysetreadreviews.blogspot.com/
Oct. 26 – Mozi Esmé – http://moziesme.blogspot.com/
Oct. 27 – Anastasia Suen’s Picture Book of the Day – http://6traits.wordpress.com/
Oct. 28 – Byron T. Bear Foundation – http://www.byronbear.com
Oct. 29 – Amy Lundebrek’s blog – http://www.amylundebrek.com/blog
Oct. 30 – Get Bear Smart Society – http://www.bearsmart.com/news-room/blog-posts

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8. Interview: Artist Rebekah Raye

Maine is the sort of place in which a traveler discovers unexpected delights: a stunning view from an undiscovered spot along the shore, a restaurant serving hot chowder to diners sitting on the pier, a yarn shop that also sells penny candy (!). I found all these when I visited Maine recently to participate in the Bar Harbor Book Festival, but I didn't expect that I would discover a new favorite illustrator. I truly fell in love with the work of artist/author Rebekah Raye. To my delight, Ms. Raye, who works with the small Maine publisher Tilbury House which was recently named publisher of the year by the New England Independent Booksellers Association, was willing to give Jacket Knack an interview.

CB: What things need to be considered when choosing the cover art for a picture book? How does this differ from the interior illustrations?

RR: I have learned from my publisher at TilburyHouse that the eyes of your characters are very important and to make a connection to the audience as if they are really looking at you the viewer. While the interior illustrations contain images of the characters looking at each other to better tell the story. Though I like to have a glance or two of a character looking back at the viewer.

CB: Your publisher is a small one. Does this affect the amount of input you as the illustrator have in the design/images/typeface/layout of your covers? How does the relationship between the art director and the illustrator work, in your experience?

RR: The first two books were designed with the given dimensions and shape of the book and I was told to leave bleed out areas for trimming and cropping. I was given plenty of freedom using the entire page for a spread sheet, just to leave room for the text. I would get approvals of the dummies and all of the stages of the paintings. I would turn in the paintings and the next thing I would see would be the folded and gathered part of the book. This last book due out Oct. 15, Bearly There, was different. I was able to see the full spread sheets laid out and was in a great back and forth conversation with the both the publisher and designer which let me feel like my voice and ideas were still clearly expressed. I have developed a strong and close friendship with the publisher. It has been comfortable and easy to discuss concerns, opinions, questions and she has always been there with helpful responses. I love her editing and philosophy. It has been a wonderful experience from the beginning and I am grateful.

CB: I was taken by the unique layout of the covers on The Very Best Bed and Thanks to the Animals (the latter, authored by Allen Sockabasin). Whose decision was it to use the band of white across the top on these picture books? It's quite an attention-grabber, and yet soothing and simple at the same time. How did the clever idea of the squirrel reclining on top of the lettering come about?

RR: In Allen's book, Thanks to the Animals, the designer Geraldine Millham created the covers along with the publisher. The idea was that the title would be easier to read on a shelf if it was placed at the top. In The Very Best Bed, the publisher, Jennifer Bunting, thought of the title as the shape of a bed since the idea of the story was how the little gray squirrel was in search for that perfect place to sleep at night. They chose the chipmunk from part of an interior illustration and asked me to create a separate single squirrel relaxed enough to be placed on top of the title.

CB: Please share any other stories about your covers, if you like.

RR: I had quite a time creating the cover for my next book, Bearly There. I tried 6 different attempts thinking I had the main character , the bear, the way I wanted him. Finally one came that seemed to fit the personality I wanted to portray. I wanted him to be looking back at the viewer, as if you caught him by surprise or you by surprise and with some feeling that he quickly wants to disappear back into the woods. It just takes a while it seems to get to know your characters. Once I saw those eyes, I fell in love and hope others will to.

CB: You mention your newest book for Tilbury House, Bear-ly There. This cover has a similar design, but the band across the top is blackish and the lettering is a mixture of fall colors. Can you tell us why this one was done differently?

RR: This was the decision of the designer, Geraldine. We wanted the title to still pop out and the black seemed to help with the contrast. The letters were cut out from a previous cover attempt of a bear with a very colorful red background that she liked. So she sort of combined the two. The publisher felt the title disappeared into the back ground without the black furry band.

CB: What, if any, children's book covers by other illustrators have caught your eye lately?

RR: I am drawn to any animal cover that has a mystery feeling,or that fills the page with strong color and has a somewhat simplified design. I love Ashley Bryan's Beautiful Blackbird cover:

and Holly Meade's cover for David Elliott's On The Farm,

and also Goose's Story [by Cari Best, Holly Meade, illus.] cover.

CB: What are you working on now? Can we expect more children's books?

RR: I am presently working on a body of work, hopefully 60 paintings of 10 different themes with also some sculpture work for the winter. I hope to be touring and doing some school visits in between, but yes, ideas are percolating for more children's books. I hope so, I love doing my art work and to share with children, and children's books are the best of both worlds.

Thanks so much for sharing your comments with our readers, Rebekah!

1 Comments on Interview: Artist Rebekah Raye, last added: 10/12/2009
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9. Thursday Tour: Travels With Tarra and Just for Elephants by Carol Buckley


I am so happy to be a part of Tilbury House’s Elephant Tour! We have elephant facts, elephant book giveaways, photos, website links, and more. SO, here we go. . .

Carol Buckley and Tarra when Tarra lived at the tire shop


*Two books will be given away from the comments on my blog on this post. I will draw two names from the comments. The first name I will draw gets to choose which book he or she wants either Travels with Tarra or Just for Elephants, both by Carol Buckley. The second name will get the second book. I will draw names on Friday, September 4 at 5:00 p.m. CST.

*But wait, there’s another chance to win a book! Tilbury House is also giving out prizes. They are drawing winners from all the comments on all the blogs that participate in the blog tour. Here are their prizes (they are able to ship in the U.S. and Canada):

1. Copy of Just for Elephants signed by Sanctuary co-founder Carol Buckley
2. Copy of Travels With Tarra signed by Carol and stamped by Tarra the Elephant
3. Package of Tilbury House animal books— The Goat Lady, Thanks to the Animals, and an advance copy of Bear-ly There

So, leave a comment below for a chance to win one of five prizes! Now onto the books. . .


Travels With Tarra is a book about Tarra the famous elephant, whom Carol Buckley purchased from a man who owned a tire shop when she was in college. Tarra has starred in movies, performed in circuses, and provided elephant rides. She loves dogs! This is a touching book with real photographs of Tarra, Carol, and their adventures. It also talks about how Carol started an Elephant Sanctuary for Tarra and other female elephants. A beautiful book for children and adults!

Just for Elephants is a book about Shirley the elephant who was a circus performer and then lived in a zoo. In this book, Shirley goes to the Elephant Sanctuary that Carol started for Tarra. The book shows how an elephant gets used to the sanctuary and other elephants in her new home. And Shirley sees an old elephant friend from her circus performing days. It’s quite touching!


Twitter Prize: From now through Sept. 9, anyone who tweets about the tour using the hashtag #trunktour will be entered to win a copy of Travels With Tarra or Just for Elephants. US/Canada only, two winners will be announced on Sept. 10th. **Follow me on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/Margo_L_Dill

So, what do you do with these books?

In the back of the books, many resources for teachers are included. Here are three:

1. The Elephant Sanctuary website has downloadable curriculum materials and links at http://www.elephants.com

2. The Elephant Information Repository is an extensive directory of elephant websites, organizations, events, etc. http://elephant.elehost.com

3. The website of the world-leading expert on African elephant family structures, life cycle, and behavior http://www.elephanttrust.org/cynthia-moss.htm

Here’s some interesting facts about Tarra the elephant–care to comment on any of these? :)
*She is 8′2″ tall and weighs 8,700 pounds!

*Each day she eats: 130 lbs of hay and/or vegetation, 1 pound of hand-mixed whole grains (oats, barley, and wheat), 2 pounds of soaked wheat bran, 10-20 pounds of fruits & vegetables, and drinks approximately 30 gallons of water.

The blog tour continues with. . .

Friday, Sept. 4: Maw Books http://blog.mawbooks.com/
Saturday, Sept. 5: Shelf Elf http://shelfelf.wordpress.com/
Sunday, Sept. 6: Bees Knees http://beeskneesbooks.blogspot.com/
Monday, Sept. 7: Through The Looking Glass http://lookingglassreview.blogspot.com/
Tuesday, Sept. 8: Bri Meets Books www.brimeetsbooks.com

And finally. . .Tilbury House Promotion to Support The Elephant Sanctuary (8/1-12/31)

Tilbury House will hold their first-ever “Trunk Sale” promotion from August 1 through December 31. For every 100 elephant books that they sell, the independent publisher has pledged to sponsor a much-needed item from the Sanctuary’s wish list. These gifts will include 100 lbs of peanut butter (a favorite treat), a day’s worth of meals for one elephant (including more than 10 lbs of fruits & veggies and 100 lbs of hay!), and an elephant-sized piece of land (to support the Sanctuary’s recent

So, buy these books if you don’t win them or buy a bunch and give them to your favorite school or as a Christmas gift!

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10. Give A Goat

Schrock, Jan West. Give A Goat. Illustrated by Aileen Darragh. Published by Tilbury House.

You may be wondering...'How can reading a picture book in one country make a difference to a family in need living thousands of miles away? And what does a goat have to do with it anyway?' Let me introduce you to this gem of a picture book--Give A Goat. It is the story of how you and me--regardless of age--can make a difference in the world.

In a way, Give A Goat is a story about a story. When fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Rowell read aloud a book, Beatrice's Goat, she inspired her class to do something. The story was about the Heifer International organization. They give animals--goats, ducks, water buffalo, etc. to individuals in need. These animals are the gift that keep on giving. They provide for the family long-term. And are the first step to creating better lives. She didn't read it aloud with the mindset--I must teach my class how to be compassionate--it was rainy; they were restless. But the results were the same. Inspired to act, they began researching and planning. They wanted to give a goat. They wanted to make a difference.

The book shows their story--how reading inspired and prompted them to act--it gives a behind-the-scenes look at compassion and generosity. Something you don't find in every picture book. I also like the details--how this took planning and teamwork. It shows them following through on a project. It's easy to be 'inspired' but more difficult to stay inspired when it comes down to commiting yourself to something.

I enjoyed this one and I think you will too. Heifer International has a gift catalog you can browse. Consider giving yourself or your loved one a feel-good-gift of giving to someone else. Goats are $120. But flocks of chicks, ducks, and geese are only $20. (There are many other animals as well.)

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

2 Comments on Give A Goat, last added: 12/20/2008
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11. The Tilbury House Give a Goat Book Tour

I want to share a review with you that I wrote about a splendid book published by Tilbury house. It is called Give a Goat and it takes a look at one way in which children can make a difference in this world.

Give a goat
Jan West Schrock
Illustrated by Aileen Darragh
Picture Book
Ages 6 to 8
Tilbury House Publishers, 2008, 978-0-88448-301-4
It is a rainy day and the children in a fifth grade class are “restless.” So their teacher, Mrs. Rowell, reads them a true story about a little girl in Uganda who was too poor to go to school. Then someone gave the little girl’s family a goat and their fortunes changed dramatically. With the money that they earned from selling the goat’s milk the family was able to pay for the little girl to go to school.
After they hear this story the school children decide that they want to “give a goat” to someone like the little girl in the story. Their teacher warns them that such a project will take hard work and cooperation, but the children do not back down. This is something that they really want to do.
And so the children begin to do some research. They learn that an organization called Heifer International gives people free livestock to help them get back on their feet. The children learn that they are going to need to raise $120 to send a goat to a family in need. Will they be able to raise so much money on their own?
In this simply written and inspirational story the author shows her readers that children can indeed make a meaningful difference in the lives of others. She shows children that with some hard work and plenty of determination they can be a part of the “giving” and “passing on the gift” process.
In a world where there is altogether too much “gimme” and not enough “giving,” this picture book offers children a new way of looking at things.
Readers can visit the Heifer International website to find out how they can be a part of this very worthy cause.

Please visit the Tilbury House website to find more "make a difference" ideas for children.

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12. Hosting Amadi’s Snowman: A Stop on a Virtual Book Tour

Today the PaperTigers is thrilled to be part of Katia Novet Saint-Lot’s virtual book tour for her wonderful book, Amadi’s Snowman (Tilbury House). From her home in Hyderabad, India, Katia is spending this month visiting blogs around the world in interviews and photos, discussing her life as a writer and global nomad, and providing photos and drawings from children who have fallen in love with her irrepressible and insatiably curious creation, Amadi.

The drawings that preface our interview with Katia come from students in two fourth grade classes whom she met during a Hyderabad school visit.

These are children fluent in English, with Hindi and Telugu taught as second languages, who were quite interested when Katia told them that Amadi and his classmates are English speakers as well.

And as their delightful drawings plainly reveal, they became immersed in the Nigerian world of the small Igbo businessman and devoted reader in the making, Amadi!

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