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Picture books | class #1, fall 2017

For our first class on September 6, we will be reading two picture books and three articles. Where the Wild Things Are is a classic in the US now, but when it was first published in 1963, it was controversial. If you knew this book as a child, what did you notice this time that […]

Review of Yo Soy Muslim: A Father’s Letter to His Daughter

Yo Soy Muslim: A Father’s Letter to His Daughter by Mark Gonzales; illus. by Mehrdokht Amini Primary    Salaam/Simon    32 pp. 8/17    978-1-4814-8936-2    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-8937-9    $10.99 Gonzales pens an honest, heartfelt text about the beauty of cultural identity, a loving, compassionate exhortation to his daughter to embrace all that she is. Although written in […]

Review of Another Way to Climb a Tree

Another Way to Climb a Tree by Liz Garton Scanlon; illus. by Hadley Hooper Preschool, Primary    Porter/Roaring Brook    40 pp. 8/17    978-1-62672-352-8    $17.99 Lulu likes trees. No, Lulu loves trees. Lulu climbs the tallest trees in the neighborhood with the widest branches and the stickiest sap. Lulu’s tree-loving joy jumps off the pages through Scanlon’s […]

August 2017 Back-to-School Horn Book Herald: Picture Books

Magnets Push, Magnets Pull by David A. Adler; illus. by Anna Raff (Holiday) This informative, interactive exploration of magnets and magnetism encourages readers to track down materials and investigate on their own. Each physics concept is carefully explained at just the right level and anchored in visible phenomena. Adler addresses common misconceptions or skillfully constructs […]

Review of How It Feels to Be a Boat

How It Feels to Be a Boat by James Kwan; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Houghton    40 pp.    g 7/17    978-0-544-71533-2    $16.99 Kwan provides a warm, kooky existential exploration of what it means to be a someone. (The opening dedication “To Chloe: Welcome to Earth!” seemingly provides his motivation.) A second-person narrative speaks directly […]

Review of The Little Red Cat Who Ran Away and Learned His ABC’s (the Hard Way)

The Little Red Cat Who Ran Away and Learned His ABC’s (the Hard Way) by Patrick McDonnell; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Little, Brown    48 pp.    g 9/17    978-0-31650246-7    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-316-50247-4    $9.99 Waking up on the title page, a little red cat spies the open door and heads out for some fun. […]

OH! AH! WAAHOO! Concept books!

Learning about colors, numbers, sounds, and the ABCs can be a blast (“WAAHOO!”) with these concept books for preschoolers-and-up. Say Zoop!, the latest old-school interactive picture book by Hervé Tullet (author of Press Here), plays with sounds, primary colors, and creativity. The book begins: touch a small blue dot “and say a little oh!” Press […]

Review of My Pictures After the Storm

My Pictures After the Storm by Éric Veillé; illus. by the author; trans. from the French by Daniel Hahn Primary    Gecko    32 pp. 3/17    978-1-776571-04-8    $16.99 This subversive French import riffs on the standard before-and-after construct with a crafty conceit and playful presentation. The opening spread is simple enough. On the left sits a grouping […]

Review of Bulldozer Helps Out

Bulldozer Helps Out by Candace Fleming; illus. by Eric Rohmann Preschool    Dlouhy/Atheneum    40 pp. 5/17    978-1-4814-5894-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-5895-5    $10.99 The construction-site gang from Bulldozer’s Big Day (rev. 5/15) is on the job again. “I can help,” little Bulldozer says hopefully to the big trucks hard at work. But Dump Truck, Cement Mixer, and […]

Review of 5 Little Ducks

5 Little Ducks by Denise Fleming; 
illus. by the author Preschool    Beach Lane/Simon    40 pp. 11/16    978-1-4814-2422-6    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-2423-3    $10.99 Listeners familiar with the traditional nursery rhyme and song know the general plotline: every day ducks go out; every day the returning group shrinks by one. But the particulars — highlighted in glorious […]