Book Reviews

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Review of Spanish Is the Language of My Family

Spanish Is the Language of My Family by Michael Genhart; illus. by John ParraPrimary    Porter/Holiday    40 pp.7/23    9780823450046    $18.99e-book ed.  9780823455454    $11.99Spanish ed.  9780823454464    $18.99Genhart highlights the love between a grandson and his abuela through their connection with the Spanish language. Narrator Manolo signs up to compete in his school’s...

Review of Penny & Pip

Penny & Pip by Candace Fleming; illus. by Eric RohmannPreschool  Dlouhy/Atheneum    40 pp.6/23    9781665913317    $18.99e-book ed.  9781665913324    $10.99Rohmann returns to the natural history museum setting of his debut, Time Flies, but this outing is far cozier than that 1995 Caldecott Honor Book. It’s just as fanciful, though. Penny, a brown-skinned...

Review of In the Night Garden

In the Night Garden by Carin Berger; illus. by the authorPreschool, Primary    Porter/Holiday    40 pp.7/23    9780823449866    $18.99e-book ed.  9780823455379    $11.99Berger’s (Finding Spring, rev. 1/15) soothing, rhythmic text guides readers through the wonders of a garden at night, directly addressing them in hushed tones: “If you are very patient and very...

Review of Martina Has Too Many Tías

Martina Has Too Many Tías by Emma Otheguy; illus. by Sara PalaciosPrimary    Atheneum    40 pp.6/23    9781534445369    $18.99e-book ed.  9781534445376    $10.99Spanish ed.  9781534445840    $18.99In this expert picture-book riff on the classic Caribbean folktale “La Cucaracha Martina,” Otheguy celebrates big families with room for all types of dispositions. Introverted, story-loving Martina is...

Review of Before, Now

Before, Now by Daniel Salmieri; illus. by the authorPrimary    Rocky Pond/Penguin    48 pp.6/23    9780593461976    $19.99e-book ed.  9780593461983    $10.99Salmieri delivers a moving intergenerational story using opposites as its central conceit. Opening pages show a view of Earth from space, reading: “In the dark sky floats a bright planet.” The page-turn zooms...

Review of Cape

Cape by Kevin Johnson; illus. by Kitt ThomasPrimary     Roaring Brook    40 pp.6/23    9781250840509    $18.99e-book ed.  9781250336132    $10.99On the day of a funeral, a young brown-skinned boy wears the cape that the deceased gave him, as a shield against painful memories. After the funeral, the child continues to use the cape...

Review of The Walking School Bus

The Walking School Bus by Aaron Friedland and Ndileka Mandela; illus. by Andrew Jackson ObolPrimary    Greystone Kids    48 pp.10/23    9781771644693    $18.95In this story set in an (unspecified) African village, a brother and sister find a creative solution to circumstances preventing them from attending school. Baba has to leave home to...

Review of I’m From

I’m From by Gary R. Gray, Jr.; illus. by Oge MoraPreschool, Primary    Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins    40 pp.9/23    9780063089969    $19.99e-book ed.  9780063334366    $10.99“I come from / early morning wake-ups, / handcrafted blankets / knitted with memories.” A young Black boy arises from his cozy bed and finds Dad in the kitchen...

Review of Chip

Chip by Federico Gastaldi; illus. by the authorPreschool, Primary    Ottaviano/Little, Brown    40 pp.10/23    9780316381840    $18.99Gastaldi begins this gentle story about death on the front endpapers, which feature a collection of “photographs” of a little boy and his constant companion, a pet fish (in a fishbowl). The title page shows two...
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