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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: board books, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 382
1. Board book: I'm Wild About You

I'm Wild About You. Sandra Magsamen. 2016. Scholastic. 10 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: I love the way you monkey around. I love the way you stomp up dand down! I love the way you waddle when you walk.

Premise/plot: An animal-themed board book for parents to read aloud to their little ones. The message from cover to cover is very sweet and affectionate. (Some readers might think it a little over the top with sweetness.)

My thoughts: I definitely like this one. It's for little ones--babies, toddlers--no doubt. I like the animals. I especially like the elephant!

Text: 3 out of 5
Illustrations: 4 out of 5
Total: 7 out of 10


© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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2. Board book: Itsy-Bitsy I Love You!

Itsy-Bitsy I Love You! Sandra Magsamen. 2016. Scholastic. 10 pages. [Source: review copy]

First sentence: My itsy-bitsy spider climbed up to snuggle me. Down came my arms, we hugged so happily.

Premise/plot: This board book reworks the classic song "Itsy Bitsy Spider."

My thoughts: I liked this one. I did. This is definitely for little ones, and, not so much preschoolers. (Although if you have preschoolers and little ones, then both might enjoy it.) The illustrations are very bright and bold. The text is cute. You can still sing it as a song. This one begs to be acted out. (As did the original song!)

Text: 4 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 7 out of 10


© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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3. Board book: HAIR

Hair. Leslie Patricelli. 2017. Candlewick. 26 pages. [Source: Review copy; board book]

First sentence: I have a hair. I take care of my hair.

Premise/plot: If you're not familiar with Leslie Patricelli's board books--especially if you're a parent with littles--you need to be. The star of this one will be a familiar face to those who have loved--or LOVED, LOVED, LOVED her delightful series. In this one, the baby will be getting a hair cut. Literally one hair cut.

My thoughts: I adore Leslie Patricelli's books. I do. This BABY has long been beloved. So it is great fun for me to see the release of two new books this year. (The Other is Nighty-Night.)

Definitely recommended for families with toddlers.

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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4. New Voice: David A. Robertson on When We Were Alone

By Cynthia Leitich Smith
for Cynsations

David A. Robertson is the first-time children's author of When We Were Alone, illustrated by Julie Flett (Portage & Main Press, Jan. 6, 2017)(available for pre-order). From the promotional copy:

When a young girl helps tend to her grandmother’s garden, she begins to notice things about her grandmother that make her curious. Why does her grandmother have long braided hair and wear beautifully coloured clothing? Why does she speak another language and spend so much time with her family?

As she asks her grandmother about these things, she is told about life in a residential school a long time ago, where everything was taken away.

When We Were Alone is a story about a difficult time in history and, ultimately, a story of empowerment and strength.

What first inspired you to write for young readers?

So much of my writing is aimed at creating social change, especially in the area of relations between First Nations people and non-First Nations people.

I believe that change comes through education; what we learn from history, and its impact on contemporary society. In Canada, we have a long history of mistreatment concerning the First Nations people. As Canadians, we need to learn about this history. So, my work tries to educate in this way.

In terms of young readers, I believe that change comes from our youth. These are the people who shape our tomorrows, and they need to walk into tomorrow informed on the important issues and histories. If they do, we’ll be in a pretty good place.

What was your initial inspiration for writing this book?

graphic novelist-writer of Irish-Scottish-English-Cree heritage
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Canada looked at the history of the residential school system, and its impact, and from that research, including residential school survivor testimony and documentation, it came up with a list of recommendations.

One of those recommendations was that the residential school system’s history needed to be taught in school as early as kindergarten.

When I saw this, I recognized that there weren’t many resources for teachers (i.e. books) that addressed the residential school system for younger learners.

So, I set out to write one, and that’s how When We Were Alone came about.

I wanted kids at that young age to learn about the system in a way that they could understand and engage with.

What were the challenges (literary, research, psychological, logistical) in bringing the text to life?

For me the challenges mostly involved sensitivity and appropriateness. This is a difficult history to tell, especially to younger learners. So, I needed to tell the story in a good way.

It took a lot of research and consultation, it took finding the right rhythm in the passages to connect with readers, and we needed to find the right illustrator, too, which we did in Julie Flett.

Of course, writing these stories always has a psychological effect on you as the writer, too. Understanding that the kids you are writing about really went through these things is tough. But knowing that kids will be learning and growing and sharing makes it worth it.

What model books were most useful to you and how?

Also illustrated by Julie Flett
I have the benefit of having five children. So, I’ve read my share of children’s books. This helped in terms of finding a good structure for When We Were Alone, and rhythm.

These two things are very important, and there are certainly some commonalities in books that really work in terms of how they are told, not just what is told in them.

What advice do you have for beginning children’s-YA writers?

Read a lot of children’s books, or YA books. Figure out styles, structures, approaches from the best. Once you’ve done that, you’ll be ready to write a good story that really connects with your reader.

It always comes down to reading first, and then hard work and a bit of skill.

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5. What's a Banana? and What's an Apple? by Marylin Singer, illustrated by Greg Pizzoli




Marilyn Singer, author of many wonderful picture books and books of poetry for children, and Greg Pizzoli, superb illustrator and author of picture books and non-fiction picture books, have teamed up for two books that are perfect for toddlers and emerging readers. What's a Banana? and What's an Apple? combine Singer's silly, sing-song-y rhymes with Pizzoli's playfully silly illustrations for two very fun books.


Singer begins What's a Banana? like a playground chant, "You can grip it and unzip it. You can mash it with a spoon. You can trace it. Outer-space it - make believe that its' the moon." Pizzoli's illustrations show a boy, a girl, a dog and a cat, doing all these things with a banana, which is sometimes actual size and more often oversized, adding to the silliness. What's a Banana? wraps up with a reminder not to forget that it's a fruit.
What's an Apple? follows a similar path, although focuses a bit more on this versatile ingredient, reminding readers in words and pictures that you can juice it, peel it, bake it and, "caramel it." What's an Apple?, which also features a different boy and girl and the same cat and dog, ends with the kids in space suits on the moon, about to enjoy and apple "any place."
The trim size of What's a Banana? and What's an Apple? are small and square, a bit bigger than a board book. Perfect for little hands, but definitely for readers who know how to handle a book. I hope that Singer and Pizzoli have more foods to explore...




Books by Marilyn Singer:






   


     






Source: Review Copies

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6. Nap-a-Roo, by Kristy Kurjan

Nap-a-Roo board book makes sleepy time special for children and parents alike.

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7. #795 – The Reindeer Dance by Christianne C. Jones & Emma Randall

The Reindeer Dance Series: Holiday Jingles Written by Christianne C. Jones Illustrated by Emma Randall Picture Window Books     8/01/2015 978-1-4795-6496-5 20 pages     Ages 0—3 “Move like Santa’s reindeer, Hop in a graceful prance. Then twirl and spin and shake To do the reindeer dance!” [back cover] “Move those hooves and dance …

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8. Carry and Learn: Opposites

Board book: Carry and Learn: Opposites. Sarah Ward. 2016. Scholastic. 10 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence:
Chicken
UP and DOWN
Cluck like a chicken!

Premise/plot: Carry and Learn Opposites is a concept board book that can be used with little ones to illustrate ("teach") the concept of opposites. The opposites explored in this book are as follows:
  • up and down
  • in and out
  • big and little
  • over and under
  • full and empty
Each page has something "interactive" for your little one to do. It may be "making" the chickens jump up and down. It might be "petting" a sheep. It might be making an animal sound. Not all pages are equally interactive and engaging.

My thoughts: I like it well enough. I like the series well enough. I think the pages are easy enough for little ones to turn themselves. 

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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9. In The Wind Cover Speed Painting

Manelle Oliphant Illustration - Illustrator and Writer

Hello All,

My new book In the Wind is coming out March 1, 2016. It’s illustrated by me and written by Elizabeth Spurr.

When I was working on the books a few months ago I recorded myself painting some of the images. Here is the cover image recording.

 

I hope you enjoy it. You can also pick up the book on Amazon at this link. Or if you’d like to support your local book stores, which is a good thing to do, head over to one of them and have them pre-order it for you.

The post In The Wind Cover Speed Painting appeared first on Manelle Oliphant Illustration.

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10. Board Book Roundup: Winter 2016 Edition

This column is part of a series of recommended board book roundups, formerly published twice a year, now published every season. You can find the previous installments here. Don’t miss Viki Ash’s primer “What Makes a Good Board Book?” from the March/April 2010 Horn Book Magazine.

carter_if you're a robot and you know itIf You’re a Robot and You Know It
by David A. Carter
Scholastic     14 pp.
9/15     978-0-545-81980-0     $16.99

Carter brings a futuristic twist to the familiar song. The text is entertaining enough (“If you’re a robot and you know it, / shoot laser beams out of your eyes”), but it’s the paper engineering that really sings. Pull the tabs to make the smiley, goofy-looking robots (one has a teakettle for a head) clap their hands, stomp their feet, etc., in such surprising, inventive ways that kids will definitely be happy — and they’ll know it.

carter_springSpring: A Pop-Up Book
by David A. Carter
Abrams Appleseed     12 pp.
2/16     978-1-4197-1912-7     $14.95

 

 

 

carter_winterWinter: A Pop-Up Book
by David A. Carter
Abrams Appleseed     12 pp.
10/15      978-1-4197-1823-6     $14.95

Prolific pop-up book creator Carter turns his attention to the seasons. Brief, sometimes lyrical texts (“Snowflakes fall from the sky, covering the sleepy earth in white”; “Who flits and flutters from flower to flower?”) are accompanied by fairly spare background illustrations that let the impressive central pop-ups shine. Captions help identify key flora and fauna.

franceschelli_dinoblockDinoblock
by Christopher Franceschelli; illus. by Peskimo
Abrams Appleseed     96 pp.
6/15     978-1-4197-1674-4     $16.95

Franceschelli follows Alphablock and Countablock with this dinosaur-themed entry. Chunky die-cut pages (which are cut to follow the outlines of the creatures) play a sort of guessing game with viewers: “I have a neck like a goose…” (page turn) “I am a coelophysis.” Useful pronunciation (“SEE-low-FYE-sis”) and clear illustrations of smiling dinos, along with two child guides, enhance the already great kid appeal.

My First Comics series

holm_i'm grumpyI’m Grumpy
by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm
Random     20 pp.
1/16     978-0-553-53344-6     $7.99

 

 

 

holm_i'm sunnyI’m Sunny!
by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm
Random     20 pp.
1/16     978-0-553-53346-0      $7.99

“Panels!” “Word Balloons!” “Sound Effects!” “Reading pictures is the first step toward reading words!” is this series’ motto. The Holm siblings (creators of the Babymouse series and others) introduce young children to comics in these books about a happy sun (Sunny!) and a grouchy cloud (Grumpy). The stories are very simple, entertaining, and easy to follow, with clear emotions nicely reinforced by the cartoony illustrations.

Hello, World! Series

mdonald_solar systemSolar System
by Jill McDonald
Doubleday      24 pp.
3/16     978-0-553-52103-0     $7.99

 

 

 

mcdonald_weatherWeather
by Jill McDonald
Doubleday     24 pp.
3/16      978-0-553-52101-6     $7.99

These early science volumes give very brief but engaging overviews of their topics. Solar System starts with the moon and sun, then talks about each planet (plus dwarf planet Pluto), with one main fact per planet and another detail in smaller font. Weather asks a simple leading question to help identify each season (“Is snow falling?”), then presents clothing and activities for each one. In both books, eye-pleasing collages in bright colors with simple shapes illustrate the concepts.

reich_hamsters on the goHamsters on the Go!
by Kass Reich
Orca   24 pp.
3/16   978-1-4598-1016-7   $9.95

 

 

 

reich_up hamster down hamsterUp Hamster Down Hamster
by Kass Reich
Orca     24 pp.
9/15     978-1-4598-1013-6     $9.95

Up Hamster takes a group of energetic hamsters through a day of opposites-learning in rhyme (“Fast hamster / Slow hamster / Yes hamster / No hamster”). On the Go finds the crew testing various modes of transportation (“Hamsters in a car / Hamsters on a boat / Hamsters on a Moon rover / Hamsters on a float”). The rectangular little critters are so funny and expressive, with just their dot-eyes and straight-lined or oblong mouths, it may make listeners start clambering for a cute-rodent pet.

The post Board Book Roundup: Winter 2016 Edition appeared first on The Horn Book.

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11. #843 – I Want to Be a Lion Tamer by Ruby Brown and Alisa Coburn

I Want to Be a Lion Tamer  (or a Vet . . . or a Zookeeper . . . or a Safari Guide . . .) SERIES:  I Want to Be . . . Written by Ruby Brown Illustrated by Alisa Coburn Kane Miller EDC Publishing     3/01/2016 978-1-61067-405-8 22 pages   8″ x …

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12. Get Ready for a Dinosaur Dance!


My family and I are vacationing in Japan right now. It's our last day in Tokyo, and we've decided to chill out in the hotel for a little while before heading out into the city one more time. I've been working on some children's writing during our trip, and as only a children's writer might say, I've had dancing and dinosaurs on my mind this morning. Then lo and behold, I discovered this new board book -- Dinosaur Dance! -- by Sandra Boynton!

I've loved Sandra Boynton since my kids were little. They're 9 and 11 now, so we don't read too many board books these days. But Boynton's books bring back such great memories for me, and I still buy them as presents for friends who have babies and toddlers.


Dinosaur Dance isn't coming out until August, so I can't give it a proper review just yet. But, somehow, I am fully confident I will love it. Just wanted to let you know about it, too!

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13. Try! Try! Try!, by Lindsey Craig | Book Review

Try! Try! Try! is an entertaining board book that encourages young readers to try new things.

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14. Monthly Book List: Our Five Favorite Books for August

Our favorite books this August are sure to capture imaginations with beautiful illustrations, unconventional characters, and fascinating true stories. Read on to see the titles that hooked our book experts this month!

For Pre-K –K (Ages 3-6):

arctic animals board book

Who’s That?: Arctic Animals (Board Book) by Tad Carpenter

We love all the vibrant and entertaining titles in the Who’s That? board book series – this one especially. Kids will love opening the sturdy flaps to meet creatures like a walrus and a polar bear. A cool read for a hot day!

For 1st and 2nd Grade (Ages 6-8):

school's first day of school picture book School’s First Day of School by Adam Rex

It’s the first day of school at Frederick Douglass Elementary and everyone’s just a little bit nervous, especially the school! What will the children do once they come? Will they like the school? Will they be nice to him? Find out what happens to the school on its first day! With charming illustrations, this delightful read-aloud picture book will have young readers reaching for it every day of the year!

 

 

For 3rd & 4th grade (Ages 8-10):

Tiny Stitches: The Life of Medical Pioneer Vivien Thomas by Gwendolyn Hooks

During the mid-twentieth century, Vivien Thomas overcame racism from his colleagues and developed a procedure that was used for the first successful open-heart surgery on a child. This is a fascinating biography of how one innovative doctor ushered in a new era of medicine.

 

 

 

 

 

For 5th & 6th grade (Ages 10-12):

dicamillo young adult bookRaymie Nightengale by Kate DiCamillo

Raymie Clarke is convinced that winning the 1975 Little Miss Central Florida Tire contest would inspire her father to come home. To win, not only does Raymie have to do good deeds and learn how to twirl a baton; she also has to contend with the wispy, frequently fainting Louisiana Elefante, who has a show-business background, and the fiery, stubborn Beverly Tapinski, who’s determined to sabotage the contest. We couldn’t put down this coming-of-age novel as it beautifully explored the subjects of loneliness, loss, and friendship.

Grades 7 & up (Ages 13+):

Two Girls Staring at the Ceiling by Lucy Frank

This novel-in-verse follows the unfolding friendship between two very different teenage girls who share a hospital room and an illness.

Chess, the narrator, is sick, but with what exactly, she isn’t sure. And to make matters worse, she must share a hospital room with Shannon, her polar opposite. How these teenagers become friends, helping each other come to terms with their illness, makes for a dramatic and deeply moving read.

 

 

 

 

 

The post Monthly Book List: Our Five Favorite Books for August appeared first on First Book Blog.

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15. Summer Children's-YA Lit Diversity Conversations

By Cynthia Leitich Smith
for Cynsations

Over the summer, the children's-YA book community has continued discussing diversity, decolonization, authenticity and representation both throughout the body of literature and the industry. Here are highlights; look for more in quickly upcoming, additional update posts.

Mirrors? Windows? How about Prisms? from Uma Krishnaswami. Peek: "...cultural content in children’s books needs to be woven into the story so the authors intention is not stamped all over it." See also Uma on Tolstoy Was Not Writing for Me.

Twelve Fundamentals of Writing The "Other" and The Self by Daniel Jose Older from Buzzfeed Books. Peek: "Every character has a relationship to power. This includes institutional, interpersonal, historical, cultural. It plays out in the micro-aggressions and hate crimes, sex, body image, life-changing decisions, everyday annoyances and the depth of historical community trauma."

Diversity in Book Publishing Isn't Just About Writers -- Marketing Matters, Too by Jean Ho from NPR. Peek: "For past projects, she has researched segmented audiences ranging from retired African-American women's books clubs, South Asian soccer organizations, Trinidadian-interest media outlets both stateside and abroad, to extracurricular programs geared toward South Bronx teens."

Looking Back: Diversity in Board Books by Joanna Marple from We Need Diverse Books. Peek: "...that children as young as six months can judge others by the color of their skin. Even if a caregiver never mentions race, children may well use skin color on their own, along with other differences, to judge themselves and others."

Drilling Down on Diversity in Picture Books from CCBlogC. Peek: "We’re keeping track of the things people want to know. Just how many picture books have animal, rather than human, characters? How many books about African American characters are historical? How many feature LGBTQ families? Or Muslims? Or people with disabilities? How many are by first-time authors or illustrators?"

Children's Books and the Color of Characters by Kwame Alexander from The New York Times. Peek: "They all believe I am writing about them. Why is this so much harder for the grown-ups? Is race the only lens through which we can read the world?"

On White Fragility in Young Adult Literature by Justine Larbalestier from Reading While White. Peek: "...we white authors can support Indigenous authors and Authors of Color by reading their books, recommending their books, blurbing their books, and recommending them to our agents. When we're invited to conferences, or festivals, or to be in anthologies, make sure they're not majority white."

When Defending Your Writing Becomes Defending Yourself by Matthew Salesses from NPR. Peek: "Here is a not uncommon experience. Writer Emily X.R. Pan was told by the white writers in her workshop that the racism in her story could never happen — though every incident had happened to her."

There Is No Secret to Writing About People Who Don't Look Like You: The Importance of Empathy as Craft by Brandon Taylor from LitHub. Peek: "The best writing, the writing most alive with possibilities, is the writing that at once familiarizes and estranges; it’s writing that divorces us from our same-old contexts and shifts our thinking about ourselves and the world around us."

How Canada Publishes So Much Diverse Children's Literature by Ken Setterington from School Library Journal. Peek: "Considering that the entire Canadian market is about the size of the market in California alone (roughly 36 million), publishers must rely on sales outside of the country."

Biracial, Bicultural Roundtable (Part One, Part Two) by Cynthia Leitich Smith from We Need Diverse Books. Peek: "According to a 2015 Pew study, 6.9 percent of the U.S. population is biracial. According to the 2010 Census, between 2000 and 2010, the number of people identifying themselves with more than one race rose from 6.8 million to 9 million."

Cynsational Screening Room



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16. #756 – Scaredy Cat by Charles Reasoner

Scaredy Cat Series: Charles Reasoner Halloween Books Written by Charles Reasoner Picture Window Books   8/01/2015 978-1-4795-8501-4 12 pages    6″ X 6″    Age 0—2 . “BLACK CAT, SCAREDY CAT. WHERE WILL YOU GO? As you prowl beneath The moon’s spooky glow? “Don’t let Halloween Kitty spook you! A black cat is anything but …

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17. Counting Dogs

Board Book: Counting Dogs (StoryBox Book). Eric Barclay. 2015. Scholastic. 16 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: One squirrel. Two kangaroos. Three turtles.

Premise/plot: It is a counting book. Various animals are counted.

My thoughts: But is it one dog counting? Or all ten?! It looks like just one dog gets to go on a counting adventure! Or perhaps they take turns being the one dog that gets to count? Regardless the dog in question I would say is definitely curious. But not always depicted as happy and carefree. Sometimes the expression on his face looks doubtful, worried, unsure, alarmed, or even unhappy. (For example, when he's balancing on one leg like a flamingo over the water. He doesn't look happy. And is it a coincidence that the next page has him IN the water counting fish?)

Overall, I was disappointed with this one. Why? Well. The cover looks fun, joyful, inviting. And the story itself, well, it doesn't match that spirit. The front cover, the back cover, the first page, the last page--there is something appealing and joyous about the illustrations. It looks promising. Like it would be a really fun, can't-miss book.

Also: This one says 3 and up.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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18. Are You My Mommy?

Board Book: Are You My Mommy? Mary Murphy. 2015. Candlewick. 16 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Are you my mommy? No, I'm a sheep. And...here's my lamb.

Premise/plot: A puppy is looking for his/her Mommy. The puppy is asking EVERYONE "Are you my Mommy?" Will the puppy find his/her Mommy? How many different animals will readers meet?

My thoughts: Are You My Mommy? is a flap book. I do like lift-the-flap books. Some better than others, of course. This is one of the better ones, in my opinion. One of the reasons why I do enjoy it is I really like the illustrations. The puppy is just adorable.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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19. Jingle! Jingle!

Board Book: Jingle! Jingle! Sebastien Braun. 2015. Candlewick. 10 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Who's that by the sleigh? It's some hungry reindeer! Jingle! Jingle!

Premise/plot: Santa is delivering presents on Christmas Eve. This lift-the-flap book follows his journey. Along the way readers meet some hungry reindeer, a friendly polar bear, a jolly bird, an excited dog, and some happy children.

My thoughts: This board book is one in the Can You Say It, Too? series by Nosy Crow. If you've enjoyed other books in the series--or perhaps I should say if your little one has enjoyed previous books in the series--this one is a holiday-themed addition that should prove just as enjoyable. If the other books in the series haven't wowed you, then this one may not either. 

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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20. Guinea Pig Party by Holly Surplice




I am always a fan of a great birthday book, and Holly Surplice's Guinea Pig Party is definitely great. It is also clever in its concept, wonderfully rhyming and charmingly illustrated. 

Guinea Pig Party  starts with ten little guinea pigs partying in a line. As the party games begin, little things here and there cause the numbers to dwindle. There is a pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey incident and pogo stick problem. There is a temper tantrum and a little pig who eats too much cake and makes an exit. When the birthday pig is all alone, a wish brings back all the party goers and happiness ensues. The final pages show the numbers from 1 - 10 with the happy little party pigs prancing around them!

Source: Review Copy



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21. Hi! A Rhyming Animal Sounds Book by Ethan Long


Hi! A Rhyming Animals Sounds Book by prolific illustrator and author Ethan Long is brilliant! A companion to Good Night! A Bedtime Animal Sounds BookHi! A Rhyming Animals Sounds Book is completely, simply engaging. After all, after getting a few words under the belt like "mama" and "dada," most kids learn a few animal sounds like "woof" and "moo." Hi! A Rhyming Animals Sounds Book capitalizes on this with very fun two page spreads where animals greet each other with their trademark sounds, which just happen to rhyme.



Long includes classic animals and their sounds, like a cat, a dog and a cow in Hi! A Rhyming Animals Sounds Book but he also throws in the less conventional yak, polar bear and pigeon. His brightly colored illustrations are filled with fun and movement and I have no doubt little listeners will enjoy repeating the sounds the animals make.

Just a few more books by Ethan Long:







Source: Review Copy


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22. Picture This: SHAPES and Picture This: HOMES by Judith Nouvion

Picture This: Shapes and Picture This: Homes are board books with a real kick. Both are filled with visually stunning photographs of the natural world and the creatures who live in it and are sure to attract readers of all ages. The quality of the photos, which I could not find to share with you here, are often National Geographic quality and, combined with the clever concept, are perfectly paired.


Picture This: Shapes takes a clever look at animals while working double duty as a concept book. Dot,  curve, line triangle and diamond are represented along with more curious shapes like coil, spiral, crisscross and trapezoid. Of course the dot is represented by a ladybug, but the close-up photo of a ladybug on a sunflower is riveting. Line is represented by birds on a wire against a blue sky and triangle is demonstrated by a stunning green moth on a bright green leaf. Flamingoes on a lake, a devil ray and a flying squirrel also represent shapes in this wonderful book!


Picture This: Homes is equally engaging and perfect for older readers. Birds definitely make the most interesting homes and they are well represented here. From the Village Weaver to the Sociable Weaver to the Osprey and the remarkable Bowerbird that likes to decorate their homes with blue objects, there is much to see and learn. Beavers, badgers, bag worms, paper wasps and the Fennec fox add to this completely engaging board book.


Also in the series:




Source: Review Copy

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23. Play and Rest, both by Elizabeth Verdick | Book Reviews

REST and PLAY, by Elizabeth Verdick and Marjorie Lisovskis are two delightful books for newborns through two years old.

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24. Jingle Bells

Board Book: Jingle Bells. James Lord Pierpont. Illustrated by Pauline Siewert. 2015. Candlewick. 14 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Jingle bells! Jingle bells! Jingle all the way! Oh, what fun it is to ride in a one-horse open sleigh.

Premise/plot: A board book adaptation of the familiar holiday song "Jingle Bells." The illustrations feature a family of bears going on a sleigh ride. Little ones can press the button and hear the song.

My thoughts: I enjoyed it. This family of bears is going on a sleigh ride. But on their sleigh ride they are joined by other animals: some squirrels, some badgers, some bunnies, a fox, an owl, etc. (The owl isn't the only bird making its way through the woods.) I loved the last illustration of all the animals gathered around a Christmas tree singing together as Santa in his sleigh passes by overhead. 

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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25. Christmas at Last

Board book: Christmas At Last! Sam Hearn. Illustrated by Penny Dann. 2015. Scholastic. 16 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: It's Christmas at last, and outside it's snowing. The stockings are hanging. And the fire is glowing.

Premise/plot: Christmas at Last is told on stocking-shaped pages. Each page reveals what a particular bear received in his or her stocking. The bears in the family: Daddy Bear, Momma Bear, Bonnie Bear, Bobby Bear, and Baby Bear. At first the presents seem to make sense: a hat for Daddy Bear, a scarf for Momma Bear, a pair of mittens for Bobby Bear. But by the end of the book that has changed. The presents all turn out to be clues for a fun family activity. Will little readers--or adult readers--guess what's going on before the big reveal?

My thoughts: I liked it more than I thought it would. Why? Because it has more story to it than I initially thought. I liked the bears. I liked the cozy Christmas scenes. And I like that readers need to solve a mystery. That added a tiny bit of depth to the book, which is what Christmas stories even for the very young need, in my opinion. 

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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