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Review of The Old Boat

The Old Boat by Jarrett Pumphrey and Jerome Pumphrey; illus. by the authors Primary    Norton    56 pp.    g 3/21    978-1-324-00517-9    $17.95 e-book ed.  978-1-324-00518-6    $17.48 As they did in The Old Truck (rev. 3/20), the brothers Pumphrey find themes of persistence, family, and renewal in the life cycle of a...

Review of Hurricane

Hurricane by John Rocco; illus. by the author Primary    Little, Brown    48 pp.    g 9/21    978-0-7595-5493-1    $17.99 Life is good for our young narrator. He loves to fish, crab, swim, and just watch the river passing by, and claims a little-used and neglected neighborhood dock as his own. One summer...

Review of The Fox and the Forest Fire

The Fox and the Forest Fire by Danny Popovici; illus. by the author Primary    Chronicle    40 pp.    g 8/21    978-1-7972-0282-2    $17.99 The book’s young narrator, sporting a red beanie, has just moved to the country with his mother and is not thrilled about it. “Nights are too quiet,” he complains....

Review of A House

A House by Kevin Henkes; illus. by the author Preschool    Greenwillow    32 pp.    g 9/21    978-0-06-309260-0    $18.99 Library ed.  978-0-06-309261-7    $19.89 Meet a house created out of simple forms and sturdy lines and nestled within a bordered square in a solid pastel blue space. The text (“A house”) is placed...

Review of The Little Wooden Robot and the Log Princess

The Little Wooden Robot and the Log Princess by Tom Gauld; illus. by the author Primary, Intermediate    Porter/Holiday    40 pp.    g 8/21    978-0-8234-4698-8    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-8234-5067-1    $11.99 Familiar fairy-tale tropes are re-envisioned through Gauld’s (a cartoonist and New Yorker cover artist) particular deadpan lens for this original fairy tale....

Review of El Cucuy Is Scared, Too!

El Cucuy Is Scared, Too! by Donna Barba Higuera; illus. by Juliana Perdomo Preschool, Primary    Abrams    40 pp.    g 7/21    978-1-4197-4445-7    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-64700-311-1    $15.54 Ramón, a Mexican American boy, is scared of starting school in a new town. El Cucuy, the Bogeyman in Mexican folklore, lives in a...

Review of I Can Make a Train Noise

I Can Make a Train Noise  by Michael Emberley and Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick; illus. by the authors  Preschool, Primary    Porter/Holiday    32 pp.    g  7/21    978-0-8234-4496-0    $18.99  e-book ed.  978-0-8234-5063-3    $11.99  The action begins on the book’s cover, where readers can spot a young child and her family walking down a busy city street, headed...

Review of My Two Border Towns

My Two Border Towns by David Bowles; illus. by Erika Meza Primary    Kokila/Penguin    40 pp.    g 8/21    978-0-593-11104-8    $17.99 Spanish ed.  978-0-593-32507-0    $17.99 A sleepy boy is nudged awake by his father for a routine Saturday trip, heading across the U.S.–Mexico border to “el Otro Lado.” As they reach the...

Review of Strollercoaster

 Strollercoaster by Matt Ringler; illus. by Raúl the Third and Elaine Bay Preschool    Little, Brown    32 pp.    g 6/21    978-0-316-49322-2    $17.99 Preschooler Sam needs a nap. “The inside feels too small” for her, and she throws a tantrum. There’s only one solution: her father swings her up into the air...

Review of Wishes

Wishes by Mượn Thị Văn; illus. by Victo Ngai Primary    Orchard/Scholastic    40 pp.    g 5/21    978-1-338-30589-0    $18.99 A little girl living in an unsafe place watches her grandfather out the window. “The night wished it was quieter,” reads the text. With a page-turn: “The bag wished it was deeper,” as...

Review of On the Trapline

On the Trapline by David A. Robertson; illus. by Julie Flett Primary    Tundra    48 pp.    g 5/21    978-0-7352-6668-1    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-7352-6669-8    $10.99 From the creators of When We Were Alone (rev. 3/17) comes another powerful and affecting picture book, this one about a boy who accompanies his grandfather Moshom...

Review of A Day for Rememberin’: Inspired by the True Events of the First Memorial Day

A Day for Rememberin’: Inspired by the True Events of the First Memorial Day by Leah Henderson; illus. by Floyd Cooper Primary, Intermediate    Abrams    40 pp.    g 5/21    978-1-4197-3630-8    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-1-68335-560-1    $15.54 Through the eyes of a formerly enslaved ten-year-old boy, Henderson recounts the story of what some...

Review of A Fort on the Moon

A Fort on the Moon  by Maggie Pouncey; illus. by Larry Day  Primary    Porter/Holiday    32 pp.    g  11/20    978-0-8234-4657-5    $18.99  Young narrator Dodge and his older brother Fox have a single goal — to build a fort on the moon. The brothers’ strong resolve playfully clashes with their father’s unsolicited input...

Review of The Whole Hole Story

The Whole Hole Story  by Vivian McInerny; illus. by Ken Lamug  Primary    Versify/Houghton    40 pp.    g  1/21    978-0-358-12881-6    $17.99  e-book ed.  978-0-358-12948-6    $12.99  Zia, a brown-skinned girl with a huge afro puff and an expansive imagination, discovers a hole in her pocket. Then the hole moves to the ground and enlarges,...

Review of When I Draw a Panda

When I Draw a Panda  by Amy June Bates; illus. by the author  Primary    Wiseman/Simon    40 pp.    g  9/20    978-1-4814-5148-2    $17.99  e-book ed.  978-1-4814-5149-9    $10.99  In this celebration of imagination, creativity, and friendship, a girl’s chalk-drawn panda leaps off her wall, and together they doodle their way through various adventures. Before...

Review of The Museum of Everything

The Museum of Everything by Lynne Rae Perkins; illus. by the author Primary    Greenwillow    40 pp.    g 5/21    978-0-06-298630-6    $17.99 In this big, noisy world, a museum, even if it’s only in one’s imagination, is a place of quiet contemplation. With this absorbing and original picture book, Perkins offers a...

Review of Wonder Walkers

Wonder Walkers by Micha Archer; illus. by the author Primary    Paulsen/Penguin    32 pp.    g 3/21    978-0-593-10964-9    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-593-10966-3    $10.99 Two children sit inside a house near a shore, peering out the window. “Wonder walk?” asks one child. “Sure,” the other responds. At the page-turn, the children are outdoors,...

Review of America My Love, America My Heart

America My Love, America My Heart by Daria Peoples-Riley; illus. by the author Primary    Greenwillow    40 pp.    g 4/21    978-0-06-299329-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-06-308934-1    $12.99 In an immediate, evocative text, a child of color asks America — her country, which she loves — if America loves her back. Against black,...

Review of Early One Morning

Early One Morning by Mem Fox; illus. by Christine Davenier Preschool    Beach Lane/Simon    32 pp.    g 2/21    978-1-4814-0139-5    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-0140-1    $10.99 Fox (Where Is the Green Sheep?, rev. 5/04; Ducks Away!, rev. 1/18) delivers another impeccably paced book, hitting every beat and every page-turn perfectly. A little boy...

Review of The Night Walk

The Night Walk by Marie Dorléans; illus. by the author; trans. from French by Polly Lawson Primary    Floris    32 pp.    g 4/21    978-1-78250-639-3    $17.95 Awakened by their mother’s voice and a sliver of light through their bedroom door, two children sleepily dress so they can “get there on time.” Where...

Review of Hello, Jimmy!

Hello, Jimmy! by Anna Walker; illus. by the author Primary    Clarion    40 pp.    g 2/21    978-0-358-19358-6    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-358-36090-2    $12.99 Jack doesn’t live with his dad full time, and lately when he stays with him, the house seems especially quiet. Although the text never uses the word depressed, this...

Review of Carpenter's Helper

Carpenter’s Helper by Sybil Rosen; illus. by Camille Garoche Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp.    g 3/21    978-0-593-12320-1    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-593-12321-8    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-593-12322-5    $10.99 It is spring, and Renata is helping Papi renovate the bathroom. They cut a hole in the wall where the new window will...

Review of Seeking an Aurora

Seeking an Aurora by Elizabeth Pulford; illus. by Anne Bannock Primary    Blue Dot Kids    32 pp.    g 1/21    978-1-7331212-7-9    $17.95 A story from New Zealand about a rare natural wonder. A father awakens his child late at night to “find an Aurora.” The child asks, “What’s an Aurora?” but Dad...

Review of Night Walk

Night Walk by Sara O’Leary; illus. by Ellie Arscott Preschool, Primary    Groundwood    32 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-55498-796-2    $18.95 e-book ed.  978-1-55498-797-9    $16.95 “Can’t sleep?” asks the narrator’s dad. “Come on, we’ll go for a walk” — and the two set off into the night. This small adventure, described in the...

Review of The Great Whipplethorp Bug Collection

The Great Whipplethorp Bug Collection by Ben Brashares; illus. by Elizabeth Bergeland Primary    Little, Brown    40 pp.    g 4/21    978-0-316-53825-1    $18.99 When Chuck decides he’s “bored enough” to accept his dad’s suggestion to start unpacking boxes in their new home, he discovers he’s descended from a long line of explorers...

Review of We All Play

We All Play by Julie Flett; illus. by the author Preschool    Greystone Kids    40 pp.    g 5/21    978-1-77164-607-9    $17.95 e-book ed.  978-1-77164-608-6    $17.99 In Flett’s lively and beautifully illustrated story, animals engage in all sorts of playful behaviors, on land and in the water. Each spread depicts one or two...

Review of Someone Builds the Dream

Someone Builds the Dream by Lisa Wheeler; illus. by Loren Long Primary    Dial    48 pp.    g 3/21    978-1-9848-1433-3    $19.99 e-book ed.  978-1-9848-1434-0    $10.99 Written in aptly propulsive verse and illustrated with aptly muscular art, this is a paean to people who work with their hands. To make a house, an...

Review of Taking Care of Mama Rabbit

Taking Care of Mama Rabbit by Anita Lobel; illus. by the author Preschool    Wiseman/Simon    24 pp.    g 3/21    978-1-5344-7064-4    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5344-7063-7    $10.99 Mama Rabbit (from Lobel’s 10 Hungry Rabbits, rev. 1/12) is sick in bed, so, one at a time, the little rabbits bring small items to cheer...

Review of Happy Springtime!

Happy Springtime! by Kate McMullan; illus. by Sujean Rim Preschool, Primary    Porter/Holiday    32 pp.    g 3/21    978-0-8234-4551-6    $18.99 Shades of icy blue suffuse the first double-page spread, with four kids all bundled up against a chilly, snowy day: “Here’s a message for school bus riders heading out on a cold,...

Review of The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau

The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau by Jon Agee; illus. by the author Primary    Dial    40 pp.    g 2/21    978-0-593-11265-6    $17.99 In Agee’s 1988 picture book, a Horn Book Fanfare title, everyone at the Grand Contest of Art hates the title character’s painting — a simply drawn duck in a...

Review of There Is a Rainbow

There Is a Rainbow by Theresa Trinder; illus. by Grant Snider Preschool, Primary    Chronicle    48 pp.    g 1/21    978-1-7972-1166-4    $15.99 A reassuring text and upbeat illustrations get to the heart of our shared COVID-19 experience — gently acknowledging loss and uncertainty while offering a message of hope and resilience. Trinder’s...

Review of The Ramble Shamble Children

The Ramble Shamble Children by Christina Soontornvat; illus. by Lauren Castillo Preschool, Primary    Paulsen/Penguin    32 pp.    g 3/21    978-0-399-17632-6    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-399-54582-5    $10.99 “Down the mountain, across the creek, past the last curve in the road, five children lived together in a ramble shamble house.” From this first welcoming...

Review of Yes & No

Yes & No by Elisha Cooper; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Roaring Brook    40 pp.    g 4/21    978-1-250-25733-8    $18.99 Cooper brings readers the sweet tale of a cat and a dog, different as can be, illustrated in the same unfussy, ­minimalistic style as his Caldecott Honor–­winning Big Cat, Little...

Review of The Shrinking of Treehorn: 50th Anniversary Edition

The Shrinking of Treehorn: 50th Anniversary Edition by Florence Parry Heide; illus. by Edward Gorey Primary, Intermediate    Holiday    80 pp.    g 10/20    978-0-8234-4703-9    $16.99 “Something very strange was happening to Treehorn.” And with that, we’re off, to follow young Treehorn’s tribulations as he wakes up one day to discover that...

Review of The Midnight Fair

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The Midnight Fair by Gideon Sterer; illus. by Mariachiara Di Giorgio Primary    Candlewick    32 pp.    g 2/21    978-1-5362-1115-3    $16.99 Forest creatures emerge from the shadows to have their own nighttime fun at the county fairgrounds in this wordless and wondrous picture book. Once the humans head home for the evening,...

Review of Mel Fell

Mel Fell by Corey R. Tabor; illus. by the author Primary    Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins    40 pp.    g 2/21    978-0-06-287801-4    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-06-308952-5    $12.99 This playful and innovatively designed book tells the story of a small bird who is eager to fly. When Mama leaves the tree one day, Mel...

Review of Keeping the City Going

Keeping the City Going by Brian Floca; illus. by the author Primary    Dlouhy/Atheneum    40 pp.    g 4/21    978-1-5344-9377-3    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5344-9378-0    $10.99 Caldecott winner Floca (Locomotive, rev. 9/13) presents a love letter to New York City and its essential workers during COVID-19. “We are here at home now, watching...

Review of The Rock from the Sky

The Rock from the Sky by Jon Klassen; illus. by the author Primary    Candlewick    96 pp.    g 4/21    978-1-5362-1562-5    $18.99 In this collection of five connected short stories, clocking in at over ninety pages and composed solely of dialogue, Klassen introduces readers to a turtle, an armadillo, and a snake...

Review of Bear Island

Bear Island by Matthew Cordell; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Feiwel    48 pp.    g 1/21    978-1-250-31716-2    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-1-250-82193-5    $10.99 As in his Caldecott Medal–winning Wolf in the Snow (rev. 11/16), Cordell begins his story before the title page, a series of wordless images telling of loss and...

Review of The Passover Guest

The Passover Guest by Susan Kusel; illus. by Sean Rubin Primary    Porter/Holiday    40 pp.    g 1/21    978-0-8234-4562-2    $18.99 This reimagining of I. L. Peretz’s 1904 Yiddish story “Der Kunzen-Macher” (“The Magician”) follows Muriel, a young girl living in Washington, D.C., during the Great Depression. On the first night of Passover,...

Review of Outside, Inside

Outside, Inside by LeUyen Pham; illus. by the author Primary    Roaring Brook    48 pp.    g 1/21    978-1-250-79835-0    $18.99 “Something strange happened on an unremarkable day just before the season changed. Everybody who was OUTSIDE…went INSIDE.” The “something strange” is, of course, the COVID-19 pandemic, as safety protocols were put into...

Review of Nice Try, Charlie!

Nice Try, Charlie! by Matt James; illus. by the author Primary    Groundwood    48 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-77306-180-1    $18.95 e-book ed.  978-1-77306-181-8    $16.95 Sporting a full beard, shaggy hair, and a wide-brimmed hat, Charlie roams his neighborhood finding things: an old television, a pair of mismatched oven mitts (and Aunt Myrtle’s...

Review of Watercress

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Watercress by Andrea Wang; illus. by Jason Chin Primary    Porter/Holiday    32 pp.    g 3/21    978-0-8234-4624-7    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-8234-5054-1    $11.99 Transcending space and time, memories bring a Chinese American family together. A girl in cutoffs and a T-shirt is embarrassed when her parents stop the car to pick wild watercress...

Review of Milo Imagines the World

Milo Imagines the World by Matt de la Peña; illus. by Christian Robinson Primary    Putnam    40 pp.    g 2/21    978-0-399-54908-3    $18.99 Spanish ed.  978-0-593-35462-9    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-399-54909-0    $10.99 Harold and the Purple Crayon meets twenty-first-century urban realism in this picture book by the Last Stop on Market Street (rev....

Review of Northbound: A Train Ride Out of Segregation

Northbound: A Train Ride Out of Segregation by Michael S. Bandy and Eric Stein; illus. by James E. Ransome Primary    Candlewick    40 pp.    g 10/20    978-0-7636-9650-4    $17.99 In this picture book set in the 1960s (and inspired by the author’s childhood memories), Michael and his granddaddy are fascinated by the...

Review of Time for Kenny

Time for Kenny by Brian Pinkney; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Greenwillow    40 pp.    g 1/21    978-0-06-073528-9    $17.99 Four brief stories take us through young Kenny’s day as he gets dressed, has an encounter with a monster-like vacuum cleaner, learns “no hands!” soccer skills, and resists bedtime. Pinkney’s text...

Review of Everything Naomi Loved

Everything Naomi Loved by Katie Yamasaki and Ian ­Lendler; illus. by Katie Yamasaki Primary    Norton    48 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-324-00491-2    $18.95 e-book ed.  978-1-324-00492-9    $17.48 Naomi lives on busy, bustling 11th Street — “It wasn’t pretty but it was alive!” — where she and her best friend Ada love to...

Review of Off to See the Sea

Off to See the Sea by Nikki Grimes; illus. by Elizabeth Zunon Preschool    Sourcebooks    32 pp.    g 1/21    978-1-4926-3829-2    $17.99 It’s bath time for the child we first met in Bedtime for Sweet Creatures (rev. 1/20), and once again the youngster’s mother is the narrator. As in many households, here...

Review of Me & Mama

Me & Mama  by Cozbi A. Cabrera; illus. by the author  Preschool, Primary    Millner/Simon    40 pp.    g  8/20    978-1-5344-5421-7    $17.99  e-book ed.  978-1-5344-5422-4    $10.99  In the early morning, a young unnamed Black girl tiptoes through the house and past various sleeping family members, to be greeted by the smell of...

Review of Out the Door

Out the Door by Christy Hale; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Porter/Holiday    40 pp.    g 10/20    978-0-8234-4644-5    $18.99 Hale’s got a clever premise here — a this-is-how-I-get-to-school picture book written entirely with prepositional phrases that combine a direction or position with a location. The title page kicks things off...

Review of The Bear in My Family

The Bear in My Family by Maya Tatsukawa; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Dial    32 pp.    g 3/20    978-0-525-55582-7    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-525-55583-4    $10.99 A child asserts that there is a bear in his family, and indeed the illustrations show a little boy sharing space with a large gray creature. “Scary, right?” The...

Review of On Account of the Gum

On Account of the Gum by Adam Rex; illus. by the author Primary    Chronicle    56 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-4521-8154-7    $17.99 Shown wordlessly before the title page, our unnamed protagonist is in a sticky situation after falling asleep while chewing gum. Upon awakening, and after that unpleasant discovery, the child’s ­gum-removal...

Review of Your House, My House

Your House, My House by Marianne Dubuc; illus. by the author; trans. from French by Yvette Ghione Preschool, Primary    Kids Can    24 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-5253-0490-3    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5253-0573-3    $9.99 “It’s the start of a new day at 3 Maple Street. But not just any day — it’s Little...

Review of Sato the Rabbit

Sato the Rabbit by Yuki Ainoya; illus. by the author; trans. from Japanese by Michael Blaskowsky Primary    Enchanted Lion    64 pp.    g 2/21    978-1-59270-296-1    $16.95 Sato is a little boy in a rabbit costume, a kind of Japanese second cousin to Max in his wolf suit. In a set of...

Review of Cave Paintings

Cave Paintings by Jairo Buitrago; illus. by Rafael ­Yockteng; trans. from Spanish by Elisa Amado Primary    Groundwood    48 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-773-06172-6    $19.95 e-book ed.  978-1-773-06173-3    $16.95 Buitrago and Yockteng (Walk with Me, rev. 5/17; On the Other Side of the Garden, rev. 7/18) turn to full-blown science fiction in...

Review of Circle! Sphere!; The Last Marshmallow; Up to My Knees!; What Will Fit?

Circle! Sphere! [Storytelling Math] by Grace Lin; illus. by the author Preschool    Charlesbridge    16 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-62354-124-8    $6.99 The Last Marshmallow [Storytelling Math] by Grace Lin; illus. by the author Preschool    Charlesbridge    16 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-62354-126-2    $6.99 Up to My Knees! [Storytelling Math] by Grace Lin; illus. by...

Review of The Night Before Christmas

The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore; illus. by Loren Long Primary    Harper/HarperCollins    40 pp.    g 9/20    978-0-06-286946-3    $18.99 Long’s inclusive take on Moore’s poem focuses on four different families in four diverse dwellings: a country farmhouse, a city apartment, a trailer home, and a house in the tropics....

Review of Once upon a Winter Day

Once upon a Winter Day by Liza Woodruff; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Ferguson/Holiday    40 pp.    g 11/20    978-0-8234-4099-3    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-8234-4404-5    $10.99 Milo’s mother is too busy to read him a story, so the boy reluctantly heads out to play in the snow. Under the bird feeder...

Review of All Because You Matter

All Because You Matter by Tami Charles; illus. by Bryan Collier Preschool, Primary    Orchard/Scholastic    40 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-338-57485-2    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-338-67474-3    $10.99 A richly illustrated affirmation for Black children — especially boys. An African American expectant mother and father eagerly await the arrival of their child, embracing him...

Review of I Talk like a River

I Talk like a River by Jordan Scott; illus. by Sydney Smith Primary    Porter/Holiday    40 pp. 9/20    978-0-8234-4559-2    $18.99 In this lyrical and empowering picture book, Canadian poet Scott tells a story based on his own experiences as a boy who stuttered. In simple, evocative language, he captures the isolation,...

Review of Prairie Days

Prairie Days by Patricia MacLachlan; illus. by Micha Archer Primary    McElderry    40 pp. 5/20    978-1-4424-4191-0    $17.99 In this nostalgic idyll set on the American prairie (judging by clues in the illustrations, in the mid-twentieth-century), a young girl describes summertime farm life as she and the other children ride horses, take...

Review of The Bear and the Moon

The Bear and the Moon by Matthew Burgess; illus. by Cátia Chien Preschool, Primary    Chronicle    48 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-4521-7191-3    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4521-8125-7    $11.99 A wide-eyed bear — a furry stand-in for toddlers learning to manage strong emotions, as well as readers of all ages dealing with sorrow —...

Review of Our Little Kitchen

Our Little Kitchen by Jillian Tamaki; illus. by the author Primary    Abrams    48 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-4197-4655-0    $17.99 Our narrator explains, with great enthusiasm and gusto, how “every Wednesday, we come together in this little kitchen” to prepare a communal meal for all who are hungry. Meal prep begins with...

Review of Sun Flower Lion

Sun Flower Lion by Kevin Henkes; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Greenwillow    40 pp.    g 9/20    978-0-06-286610-3    $18.99 Library ed.  978-0-06-286611-0    $19.89 Meet the sun, “as bright as a flower”; a flower that looks like a lion; and a lion, who sees the flower and dreams about a field...

Review of Your Name Is a Song

Your Name Is a Song by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow; illus. by Luisa Uribe Preschool, Primary    Innovation    40 pp.    g 7/20    978-1-943147-72-4    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-1-943147-91-5    $10.99 Roll call can be difficult for a child with an unusual name. A young girl describes how her name “got stuck” in her teacher’s mouth...

Review of Ten Ways to Hear Snow

Ten Ways to Hear Snow by Cathy Camper; illus. by Kenard Pak Preschool, Primary    Kokila/Penguin    32 pp.    g 10/20    978-0-399-18633-2    $23.99 e-book ed.  978-0-593-11123-9    $11.99 When she wakes to discover that it blizzarded the night before, Lina isn’t deterred from her plans to walk to see her grandmother (in Arabic,...

Review of Can Bears Ski?

Can Bears Ski? by Raymond Antrobus; illus. by Polly Dunbar Primary    Candlewick    40 pp.    g 11/20    978-1-5362-1266-2    $16.99 Bear’s home is loud — full of Dad Bear’s rumbling, shaking, and trembling — and our protagonist enjoys the commotion. Perplexingly, though, Dad and everyone else seems to keep asking, “Can bears...

Review of Robobaby

Robobaby by David Wiesner; illus. by the author Primary    Clarion    32 pp.    g 9/20    978-0-544-98731-9    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-358-41605-0    $12.99 In his latest picture book told with comics panels, Wiesner (Mr. Wuffles!, rev. 9/13) presents a new-baby story; the twist here is that the family in question are robots. The...

Review of In the City

In the City by Chris Raschka; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Jackson/Atheneum    40 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-4814-8627-9    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-8628-6    $10.99 In this inquisitive and celebratory story, Raschka explores the enigmatic nature of fledgling friendships, reflecting on how friends find each other. In separate spaces in a bustling...

Review of Evelyn Del Rey Is Moving Away

Evelyn Del Rey Is Moving Away by Meg Medina; illus. by Sonia Sánchez Preschool, Primary    Candlewick    32 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-5362-0704-0    $17.99 Spanish ed.  978-1-5362-1334-8    $17.99 Daniela knows she’s going to have to say goodbye to Evelyn, her next-door neighbor and “número uno best friend.” But first, the two girls...

Review of I Am Every Good Thing

I Am Every Good Thing by Derrick Barnes; illus. by Gordon C. James Preschool, Primary    Paulsen/Penguin    32 pp.    g 9/20    978-0-525-51877-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-525-51878-5    $10.99 Barnes and James reunite, after the multi-award-winning success of Crown (rev. 11/17), for this beautiful and necessary book that affirms Black boys and their...

Review of Every Color of Light

Every Color of Light by Hiroshi Osada; illus. by Ryōji Arai; trans. from Japanese by David Boyd Preschool, Primary    Enchanted Lion    40 pp.    g 8/20    978-1-59270-291-6    $16.95 Poetic phrases and vibrant mixed-media illustrations capture the intensity of a thunderstorm across a natural landscape. The book begins with a small image...

Review of Desert Girl, Monsoon Boy

Desert Girl, Monsoon Boy by Tara Dairman; illus. by Archana Sreenivasan Preschool, Primary    Putnam    32 pp.    g 5/20    978-0-525-51806-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-525-51807-5    $10.99 In this beautifully rendered study of contrasts and commonalities, Dairman imagines a girl and boy from two different biomes in India. Split pages portray the girl...

Review of The Weather's Bet

The Weather’s Bet by Stephen Cowan; illus. by Ed Young Primary    Philomel    32 pp.    g 3/20    978-0-525-51382-7    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-525-51383-4    $10.99 “One day a shepherd was fast asleep / upon a hill with her flock of sheep.” The three powers who rule the Earth — Rain, Wind, and Sun...

Review of If Winter Comes Tell It I'm Not Here

If Winter Comes, Tell It I’m Not Here by Simona Ciraolo; illus. by the author Primary    Candlewick    32 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-5362-1530-4    $16.99 As a little boy sits on the side of a pool eating an ice-cream cone, his older sister informs him that he had better enjoy it, because...

Review of Julián at the Wedding

Julián at the Wedding by Jessica Love; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Candlewick    40 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-5362-1238-9    $16.99 Love’s follow-up to Julián Is a Mermaid (rev. 5/18) features characters both familiar and new. At the start of the story, Julián and Abuela are strolling down the sidewalk, arm-in-arm...

Review of If You Come to Earth

If You Come to Earth by Sophie Blackall; illus. by the author Primary    Chronicle    80 pp.    g 9/20    978-1-4521-3779-7    $18.99 Quinn, a small child in a red gnome hat, writes a letter to potential visitors to our planet to explain to them what we’re about: our location in the universe,...

Review of In the Half Room

In the Half Room by Carson Ellis; illus. by the author Primary    Candlewick    32 pp.    g 10/20    978-1-5362-1456-7    $16.99 In a series of images that depict halves, Ellis ushers readers into a delightfully surreal setting. With pleasing rhymes (“Half a window / Half a door / Half a rug on...

Review of Outside In

Outside In by Deborah Underwood; illus. by Cindy Derby Primary    Houghton    40 pp.    g 4/20    978-1-328-86682-0    $17.99 The intersection of outside and inside is creatively explored in this reflection on nature and its gentle persistence and ever-presence. The story begins in nature, as a young girl explores an impressionistic forest....

Review of Overground Railroad

Overground Railroad by Lesa Cline-Ransome; illus. by James Ransome Primary, Intermediate    Holiday    48 pp. 1/20    978-0-8234-3873-0    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-8234-4390-1    $11.99 “Some walked. / Some drove. / But we took the train north.” In 1939, as part of the Great Migration, young Ruth Ellen and her parents leave North Carolina,...

Review of You Matter

You Matter by Christian Robinson; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Atheneum    40 pp.    g 6/20    978-1-5344-2169-1    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5344-2170-7    $10.99 No saccharine self-esteem book, this is a powerful affirmation of each reader’s worth. Robinson’s text is loaded with child appeal (“When everyone thinks you’re a pest. / When...

Review of One Golden Rule at School: A Counting Book

One Golden Rule at School: A Counting Book by Selina Alko; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Ottaviano/Holt    40 pp.    g 6/20    978-1-250-16381-3    $17.99 Within the familiar rhythms and routines of a school day, viewers count from one (“One backpack”) to ten (“Ten chickpeas lined up for lunch”) and back...

Review of 13 Stories About Harris

13 Stories About Harris by Amy Schwartz; illus. by the author Preschool    Holiday    40 pp.    g 7/20    978-0-8234-4249-2    $18.99 Thirteen short stories follow city dweller Harris on preschooler-sized adventures. A very few seem geared toward adult sensibilities; most tap directly into authentic early-childhood behaviors and experiences. Harris, completely absorbed in...

Review of A Thousand Glass Flowers: Marietta Barovier and the Invention of the Rosetta Bead

A Thousand Glass Flowers: Marietta Barovier and the Invention of the Rosetta Bead by Evan Turk; illus. by the author Primary    Atheneum    48 pp.    g 8/20    978-1-5344-1034-3    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5344-1035-0    $10.99 In fifteenth-century northern Italy, on the island of Murano, where glassmakers thrived, lived young Marietta Barovier. Marietta dreamed...

Review of Sun and Moon Have a Tea Party

Sun and Moon Have a Tea Party by Yumi Heo; illus. by Naoko Stoop Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp.    g 7/20    978-0-385-39033-0    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-385-39034-7    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-385-39035-4    $10.99 Sun and Moon meet for a late-afternoon tea party and discover the disparities between their worldviews. As they...

Review of The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story

The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story by Tina Cho; illus. by Jess X. Snow Primary    Kokila/Penguin    48 pp.    g 8/20    978-1-9848-1486-9    $17.99 Young Korean girl Dayeon admires her diver grandmother (“You are like a treasure-hunting mermaid”) and wants to be like her. Grandma is a haenyeo, one of many...

Review of Nana Akua Goes to School

Nana Akua Goes to School by Tricia Elam Walker; illus. by April Harrison Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp.    g 6/20    978-0-525-58113-0    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-525-58114-7    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-525-58115-4    $10.99 Although her grandmother, Nana Akua, is her “favorite person in the whole universe,” young Zura is not excited about...

Review of Field Trip to the Ocean Deep

Field Trip to the Ocean Deep by John Hare; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Ferguson/Holiday    40 pp.    g 9/20    978-0-8234-4630-8    $17.99 Hare’s follow-up to Field Trip to the Moon (rev. 9/19) again features a compelling setting, a not-too-scary adventure, and immersive illustrations. This wordless story begins on the book’s...

Review of Swing

Swing by Michael Hall; illus. by the author Preschool    Greenwillow    40 pp.    g 5/20    978-0-06-286617-2    $17.99 The title spread introduces a school — a place of learning and growth — where outside the classroom window a swing set stands empty and waiting. A letter L sits alone on one of...

Review of We Will Rock Our Classmates

We Will Rock Our Classmates by Ryan T. Higgins; illus. by the author Primary    Disney-Hyperion    48 pp.    g 7/20    978-1-368-05959-6    $17.99 This second installment about T. rex Penelope (We Don’t Eat Our Classmates, rev. 9/18) centers on the school talent show. Penelope loves to rock and roll, and using her...

Review of Good Guys, Bad Guys

Good Guys, Bad Guys by Joanne Rocklin; illus. by Nancy Carpenter Preschool, Primary    Abrams    32 pp.    g 5/20    978-1-4197-3417-5    $16.99 Rocklin and Carpenter present a ­rollicking homage to neighborhood kid–­summertime play. The story begins on the title-page spread as two children get ready to greet the morning. On the left-hand...

Review of Bo the Brave

Bo the Brave by Bethan Woollvin; illus. by the author Primary    Peachtree    32 pp.    g 4/20    978-1-68263-182-9    $17.99 When Bo’s two older brothers, Erik and Ivan, set off from the castle on a quest to hunt a monster, they refuse to allow her to join, sneering that she’s too little....

Review of The Blue House

The Blue House by Phoebe Wahl; illus. by the author Primary    Knopf    40 pp.    g 8/20    978-1-9848-9336-9    $17.99 Library ed.  978-1-9848-9337-6    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-1-9848-9338-3    $10.99 Wahl’s picture book tells an affecting story about loss and starting over. In it, interdependent text and art channel a Molly Bang–like artistic style...

Review of We Are Water Protectors

We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom; illus. by Michaela Goade Primary    Roaring Brook    40 pp.    g 3/20    978-1-250-20355-7    $17.99 The book opens with a young Indigenous girl collecting water with her grandmother, who tells her that “water is the first medicine.” Vibrant blues, greens, and purples depict the river...

Review of Whoo-Ku Haiku: A Great Horned Owl Story

Whoo-Ku Haiku: A Great Horned Owl Story by Maria Gianferrari; illus. by Jonathan Voss Primary    Putnam    32 pp.    g 3/20    978-0-399-54842-0    $16.99 e-book ed.  978-0-399-54843-7    $9.99 Readers follow a pair of great horned owls and their owlets from winter into the next autumn in this life-cycle narrative told in haiku....

Review of Everyone's Awake

Everyone’s Awake by Colin Meloy; illus. by Shawn Harris Primary    Chronicle    48 pp. 3/20    978-1-4521-7805-9    $17.99 Meloy and Harris depict one family’s anarchical bedtime routine within their ramshackle lighthouse-esque domicile. ­Rollicking rhymes, narrated by a young family member, set the scene: “We all got / tucked in early. / A...

Review of Jules vs. the Ocean

Jules vs. the Ocean by Jessie Sima; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Simon    48 pp. 5/20    978-1-5344-4168-2    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5344-4169-9    $10.99 Intent on impressing her older sister at the beach, Jules plans to build a big sandcastle. When the waves foil her plans, she assumes “the Ocean” is...

Review of A New Green Day

A New Green Day by Antoinette Portis; illus. by the author Preschool    Porter/Holiday    40 pp. 4/20    978-0-8234-4488-5    $18.99 In this exuberant celebration of a summer day, readers engage with compelling page-turns to solve simple nature riddles. “Morning lays me on your pillow,” the book opens, “square and warm. Come out...

Review of Where's Baby?

Where’s Baby? by Anne Hunter; illus. by the author Preschool, Primary    Tundra    40 pp. 1/20    978-0-7352-6498-4    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-7352-6499-1    $10.99 “Have you seen Baby, Mama Fox?” Mama Fox feels certain Baby is “somewhere,” and so Papa Fox begins the search, like a game of hide-and-seek. “Ba-by! Are you indoors?...

Review of A Stopwatch from Grampa

A Stopwatch from Grampa by Loretta Garbutt; illus. by Carmen Mok Primary    Kids Can    40 pp. 4/20    978-1-5253-0144-5    $17.99 “When summer started, I got Grampa’s stopwatch. I don’t want his stopwatch. I want him.” The accompanying illustration shows a child sitting all alone on a porch swing, bereft. We next...
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