Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Night Walker

Submitted by Ms. Allana! The Night Walker by Richard Thompson. With mesmerizing illustrations by Martin Springett, this book captures the imagination and awakens the senses, as a young boy explores streams, hill, and forest. He finds "treasures" along the way, and encounters an owl, rabbits, and other wild creatures of the territory. However, as the sun begins to set, he realizes he is still a long way from home, and imagines that another more fearsome and sinister creature is following him. The creature, he fears, is the Night Walker. With its rhythmic prose and spellbinding art, this book will appeal to all young children, and readers of every level. See this book listed in our catalog

Monday, March 28, 2011

Little Chimp's Big Day

Submitted by Ms. Tammy!
Little Chimp’s Big Day by Lisa Schroeder, illustrated by Lisa McCue. Little chimp is left alone on a tree branch waiting for his mother to return. Suddenly the branch snaps, and little chimp lands on the jungle floor in a mucky patch of mud. Although scared, little chimp starts to explore the jungle, taking a watery ride on a hippo, swinging on vines, escaping a jungle cat, and munching bananas from a tree. Little chimp wonders “Where could Mother be?” as he moves through the jungle from one adventure to another. If you look closely on each page, you may just find where little chimp’s mother has been during his busy day. In the end little chimp is reunited with his mother and they cuddle together, safe at last. See this book listed in our catalog

Friday, March 25, 2011

Christian, the Hugging Lion

Submitted by Ms. Tess!
Christian, the Hugging Lion by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell, illustrated by Amy June Bates, is based on the incredibly true, and touching, story of two men, Ace and John, who raised a lion cub in their London flat together! In the late 1960's/early 1970's it appears that Harrods, the swank British department store, had an exotic pet section, where Ace and John came upon a lion. "A store is no place for a lion to live," they said. So, they took him home, and named him Christian. Christian was happy with Ace and John. He loved them very much, and even gave them hugs. But after a year he was starting to get too big for Ace and John's home, and they realized Christian really belonged in the wild. They planned a trip to Kenya, where they left Christian in the capable hands of Mr. Adamson, a man who taught lions how to live in the wild, after being in captivity. Ace and John knew they did the right thing, but still missed Christian, and one day went on a safari to try and find him. Mr. Adamson said Christian was fully grown, with a family of his own, and might not remember them. But Christian saw his friends, he raced to them, and gave them a great big lion hug! See this book listed in our catalog or watch a video featuring footage of the real Christian, and his reunion with Ace and John

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters

Submitted by Ms. Tess!
Of Thee I Sing is a children's book by President Barack Obama. Now, where President Obama found time to write a children's book, I'm not sure. He strikes me as a busy, busy man. But I am not going to complain. Because this book is scrumptious. It's full of inspirational prose, and beautiful illustrations compliments of Loren Long. Of Thee I Sing is actually a letter to the president's daughters. It begins, "Have I told you lately how wonderful you are? How the sound of your feet running from afar brings dancing rhythms to my day? How you laugh and sunshine spills into the room?" (Do you need a tissue yet? I did.) The president goes on to list the attributes of his daughters, along with examples of multicultural figures who embodied those attributes. They are creative like Georgia O'Keeffe. They are brave like Jackie Robinson. They are strong like Helen Keller. Because ultimately, as the president eloquently puts it, "America is made up of people of every kind" and "Have I told you that they are all a part of you? Have I told you that you are one of them and that you are our future? And have I told you that I love you?" (Where are those darn tissues?!) Of Thee I Sing is definitely worth checking out. I think it's an absolutely lovely tribute from a parent to a child, and hope you will think so too. See this book listed in our catalog

Monday, March 21, 2011

Where's Walrus?

Submitted by Ms. Tess!
Check out Where's Walrus by Stephen Savage for a fun, wordless story, with nostalgic illustrations, reminiscent of retro ad campaigns! It's about a walrus who is bored of the zoo, so he decides to have a day out on the town, much to the zookeeper's dismay! The zookeeper runs around a cityscape wondering where the walrus is. The zookeeper can't seem to track Walrus down, but I bet your child can! Walrus is hidden in each illustration (in some a bit more successfully than others, with humorous results). Finally the zookeeper tracks down his walrus at a swimming pool, which leads him to an idea that might make Walrus's days less boring in the future... Solve the mystery of Where's Walrus today! You won't be disappointed! See this book listed in our catalog

Friday, March 18, 2011

Miss Dorothy and Her Bookmobile

Submitted by Ms. Sue!
Miss Dorothy and Her Bookmobile by Gloria Houston is the story of Dorothy Thomas, the author’s real life childhood hero, who delivered books to her when she was a child every week. Dorothy was a young girl that loved books. She also loved people. She decided to become a librarian when she grew up, so she could be in charge of a fine brick library, just like the one in her hometown in Massachusetts. She went to college, and then library school, but before Dorothy could become a librarian in a fine brick building, she got married, and moved to North Carolina, in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Dorothy’s house was cozy, and she had bountiful gardens of vegetables and flowers, but there was no library, so a meeting was called with all her friends that loved to read, and they decided to start a bookmobile that Dorothy would be the librarian of. When Miss Dorothy’s green bookmobile arrived, everyone came out to see. She kept her donated books in her basement, and everyday she loaded and unloaded her truck with stacks of books that she carried up and down the steep staircase. Miss Dorothy delivered books over hills and valleys to churches, schools, farms, grocery stores, and even the courthouse steps, until finally one day a reader donated a little white house to be used as a library. It wasn’t a fine brick library, but her dream had still come true! See this book listed in our catalog

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Someday

Submitted by Ms. Janis!
As Someday by Alison McGhee opens, a mother is talking to her little girl about things that have happened in her life: the day she was born, the day she started school, when she learned to swing. Then the story continues, talking about the future of this little girl, as she becomes a young woman, and has a child of her own, and then in her old age. The pen, ink, and watercolor sketches have a very sentimental look. This book is a great gift for moms of little girls. See this book listed in our catalog

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

It Looked Like Spilt Milk

Submitted by Ms. Melissa!
In the second grade, my teacher had us make clipboards out of cardboard and paper clamps. When we were done, we all marched outside with our creations, a pencil tied to the cardboard with string, and scrap paper attached firmly under the clamp. She had us make a circle, and then instructed us to lie down on our backs in the grass. She asked that we close our eyes, and when we opened them to the big blue sky full of puffy white clouds, she said “draw what you see.” That’s what I remember at least, and that’s what I am reminded of when I read the classic It Looked Like Spilt Milk by Charles G. Shaw. Plain blue pages with a single image, and very few words make up this simple tale. The basic, concrete phrasing is perfect for teaching concepts such as “alike and different” or “image versus object.” Late spring is the perfect time to go cloud watching, so go exploring with your little one, and learn what their imagination is capable of! See this book listed in our catalog

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Go Away, Big Green Monster!

Submitted by Ms. Jill!
Go Away Big Green Monster by Ed Emberly. “Big Green Monster has two big yellow eyes…” So begins this simple story that’s just right for sharing with toddlers. As you turn the bright, die-cut pages, more and more of the monster appears: his scraggly purple hair. His long bluish-greenish nose. His sharp white teeth! And finally, his BIG SCARY GREEN FACE!!! But not to fear! All the brave reader has to do is shout “Go Away!” and keep on turning the pages. One by one, the monster’s scary features disappear again, until he is gone away completely. Young readers will demand to read this not-so-scary book again, and again, and again! See this book listed in our catalog

Monday, March 14, 2011

Mendel's Accordion

Submitted by Ms. Tess!
I recently acquired an accordion, and am learning to play it. In hopes of incorporating my new-found accordion skills into story time at the library, I searched for children's books featuring accordions, and was lead to the gem that is Mendel's Accordion by Heidi Smith Hyde, illustrated by Johanna Van Der Sterre. It's a story about a brave Jewish musician, and his immigration from Europe to America, when times were not easy for Jewish people, or immigrants. It's a story about the power of music to heal and unify. And it's a story about the proud tradition of Klezmer, a style of music that was originated in eastern Europe by people who typically lacked formal music training, but could play songs that easily evoked happiness, or sadness, in their audiences. It's a fabulous book for any child curious about history, or music, or accordions! See this book listed in our catalog

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Owly & Wormy: Friends All Aflutter!

Submitted by Ms. Tess!
I was very excited (perhaps a little too excited) to discover that Andy Runton, creator of one of my absolute favorite graphic novel series, the Owly books, has a brilliant new picture book! Friends All Aflutter is in the same wordless style as Runton's books for older kids, but in a new format, friendly for younger children. Much beloved characters Owly and Wormy are interested in butterflies. They figure they need to plant some flowers to attract butterflies, so they go to the nursery. But when their flowers bloom, there are caterpillars living in them instead! Owly and Wormy are mildly outraged by this turn of events, but grow extremely fond of the caterpillars over time. So fond, in fact, that they are terribly sad to learn their caterpillar friends must go away for the colder seasons! Owly and Wormy miss their new friends, but won't they be surprised when they get the butterflies they originally wished for in the spring? Friends All Aflutter is charming in so many ways. I love how clearly Runton tells the story without any text. I love the message of friendship and devotion it delivers. I even love that when Owly has an idea it's illustrated by the appearance of an energy efficient light bulb above his head! I've had the pleasure to meet Andy Runton, and have a book signed by him, and he was a super sweet guy, so I might be a little bias, but I assure you I am not the only person at this library that adores Owly. Every time I put an Owly book on display, it is checked out within 24 hours. Every single time. So I simply must implore you to do yourself and your little one a favor by checking out the sufficiently delightful Friends All Aflutter ASAP. I do not think you'll be disappointed :) See this book listed in our catalog

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I Must Have Bobo

Submitted by Ms. Amanda!
I have two cats and they are always taking my things. They steal my socks, my pencils, and even my toys, just like Earl the cat keeps taking Bobo from Willy in I Must Have Bobo by Eileen Rosenthal. Bobo is a sock monkey who helps Willy with everything from fighting bugs to walking past scary dogs. One morning, Willy wakes up to find something is very WRONG! Bobo is missing! After looking for Bobo, Willy finds he has been stolen by Willy’s cat, Earl. Later that day, Earl steals Bobo while Willy is coloring, and then again when Willy is playing blocks. Willy can not find Bobo anywhere he looks: not in the dresser, nor under the rug, and not even in the washing machine. Finally, Willy finds Earl and Bobo on the chair, napping safe and sound... or so Willy thinks! This story made me laugh out loud because it is just like a cat to steal someone’s favorite toy. If you have a cat in your home (and if you don’t, you should) you will enjoy this book! See this book listed in our catalog

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Owl and the Pussycat

Submitted by Ms. Tess!
Artist St├ęphane Jorisch offers a brilliant reinterpretation of Edward Lear's classic poem in this beautifully illustrated edition of The Owl and the Pussycat. Jorisch takes Lear's non-sensical interspecies romance one step further, portraying an affluent owl and a cat from (literally) the other side of the tracks who must hide their affection for one another from their close-minded neighbors. Seeking a place where they can love each other freely, they set out to sea. They sail to a land where their relationship is embraced and, after acquiring a ring from a friendly pig, the owl and pussycat are wed! Lear was an incredibly inventive poet (for instance, he coined the term "runcible spoon" for this poem) and Jorisch took the melancholy inferred from the poem (probably reflective of the repressive 19th century English society Lear was witness to) to inspire his fanciful, but thought-provoking illustrations. You can read The Owl and the Pussycat to the children in your life as a silly rhyming story, or as a celebration of true love and its ability to conquer all obstacles! See this book listed in our catalog

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Pssst!

Submitted by Ms. Tess!
What would you do if you were just walking through the zoo, minding your own business, and the animals started talking to you? That's the premise of Pssst! by Adam Rex. A little girl is wandering past the gorilla habitat when she hears "Pssst!" It's the gorilla! And he needs a favor. Could she get him a new tire? His swing is broken. Get two. Just in case. And he's not the only animal in need. The javelina needs trashcans, the bats want flashlights, the penguins would like bright colored paint, the sloths yen for bicycle helmets, and the turkeys desire corn (but not to eat. to turn into clean-burning fuel). Luckily, there's a store across the street that happens to sell all of these things, and she's provided money by the baboon and tortoise (the peacock fishes the coins out of the fountains every night). But could these animals have ulterior motives? What else could they do with tires, lights, paint, helmets, and fuel... Find out when you read Pssst! See this book listed in our catalog

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Anybody Home? and In My Backyard

Submitted by Ms. Melissa!
Spring! It’s time to escape the house and go exploring. Here are some books to help you break free from winter captivity. Breathe in some fresh air and enjoy.
Anybody Home? by Aileen Fisher is a classic rhyme about animals and their homes. Use this as a bed time story under the stars, or before a walk in the woods. The detailed black and white illustrations by Susan Bonners are accurate depictions of animals in their habitats. If going on a nature walk, children can search for these same animal dwellings, and make up stories about who lives in them and what season or time of day an animal would use them. See this book listed in our catalog
In My Backyard by Valarie Giogas, with illustrations by Katherine Zecca, is a book about baby animals you may find in your very own backyard. There are many interactive read along activities suggested in the back of the book. Children will learn that baby skunks are named kits, and baby raccoons are called cubs! You can count along from 1 to10, play a memory game, or seek and find the baby animals. Tips on what to do if you find an injured animal, and caring for wildlife are also mentioned. See this book listed in our catalog

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Cooking with Henry and Elliebelly

Submitted by Ms. Catherine!
A few months after my parents brought my new baby brother home from the hospital, I asked when he’d be going back. And while I might not have thought so at the time, I now know that my life would have been much less exciting without my younger brother. In Cooking with Henry and Elliebelly, written by Carolyn Parkhurst, and illustrated by Dan Yaccarino, we meet an older brother who is experiencing just how interesting life can be when a little sister tags along. Henry is determined to make a good pretend cooking show that will be just right. He will have chef hats, and the right ingredients, and the right directions. Anyone who has a little brother or sister knows that things might not go quite right for Henry. With pirate hats instead of chef hats, and a certainty that pizza is a key ingredient in waffles, Henry’s little sister drives him up the wall! But by the end of the book, Henry has decided that playing with his little sister isn’t all that bad. This is a great book if you have an older sibling at home that is sometimes frustrated with the new addition in the house, or if you just think that cooking shows can be improved with pirate hats. If you do, come back next week for Pirate Cooking with Henry and Elliebelly! See this book listed in our catalog
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