Friday, June 26, 2015

Poetry Friday: Itty Bitty Kitty, by Joan Holub

So adorable with rhyme throughout. Itty Bitty Kitty is a great pick for Poetry Friday! Enjoy our own Joan Holub's bouncy, punchy text accompanied by the cutest illustrations by James Burks. Move over Clifford!

    It was a furry purry,
snuggly huggly,
cutie patootie,
                    He had sparkly green eys
                 and was just the right size
                 for a girl like Ava.

Itty Bitty Kitty
by Joan Holub
illustrated by James Burks
Harper, 2015

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Poetry Friday: Beach House

Oh, these two caught it: the summer sun and fun at a beach house. This is perfect for your Poetry Friday out at the shore. Deanna Caswell's text is lyrical while Amy June Bates captures sunshine in her watercolors. Enjoy!

A long, long drive.

It's been a year
     of dreaming, waiting.

Summer's here.

Doors fly open.
     End of the road.

"To the beach!"
     "Not yet--unload."

Beach House
by Deanna Caswell
illustrated by Amy June Bates
Chronicle Books, 2015

Monday, June 15, 2015

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly! Lucille Colandro

Can it be done again? Yes! In board book format for little totz' hands. And how about dropping the line, "Perhaps she'll die."? Why can't a cough release all the Old Lady's new friends she has temporarily ingested? Much more friendly thanks to Lucille Colandro's text.

And then Jared Lee's illustrations add a frenzy to the story with tiny pen hash marks zinging across the imagery. The layout is brilliant. (That black dog is the cutest ever and with a few others, smartly avoids being eaten!)

Colandro dedicated the work to the Cartwheel Team. I agree. Bravo!

There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly!
by Lucille Colandro
illustrated by Jared Lee
Cartwheel Books, July 2015

Friday, June 12, 2015

Poetry Friday: After the Bell Rings

Here's a collection of poems centered on all things after school. Read a few for this Poetry Friday!


Out of the prison gates I slip,
I zig and zag, I dodge and dip,
Through the dark forest of towering trees,
Leaving no trail for my enemies.
Across the wild river on a narrow log,
Past the castle with the howling wolf-dog,
One last mad dash! I got home okay!
Good thing that my school is just three blocks away.

After the Bell Rings, Poems About After-School Time
by Carol Diggory Shields
illustrated by Paul Meisel
Dial Books for Young Readers, 2015

Monday, June 1, 2015

Polar Bear's Underwear: tupera tupera

How can you not chuckle just by saying the title: Polar Bear's Underwear? Right? This Chronicle Books release isn't a board book, but the stiff pages with underwear cutouts will hold up to little hands.

As Polar Bear and Mouse look for the missing undergarment, they find other underwear with design hints as to whom the clothing might belong. The zebra's is striped. The butterfly's is tiny and covered in flowers. The guessing game will keep the giggles going along with the fun tighty-whitey ending.

Tupera Tupera, the team of Tatsuya Kameyama and Atsuko Nakagawa's layered collage hints at Eric Carle while holding its own freshness. Enjoy!

Polar Bear's Underwear
by tupera tupera
Chronicle Books

Friday, May 29, 2015

Poetry Friday: Blown Away

Happy Poetry Friday! Look at this cutie and consider adding it to your collection!

"A windy day.
A brand-new kite.
For Penguin Blue
a maiden flight.

The kite so high. The wind so strong.
It's pulling Penguin Blue along."

And so begins the adventure!

Blown Away
by Rob Biddulph
Harper, 2015

Monday, May 25, 2015

Giveaway! Autographed Mini Myths board books for preschoolers.

Giving away 4 autographed Mini Myths board books
by readertotz co-founder, Joan Holub,
illustrated by Leslie Patricelli, creator of Yummy Yucky
and other amazing board books.

Please do this to enter:
"Like" Joan Holub and Lorie Ann Grover on Facebook
Drop a quick comment here on this post.

Entry rules: 
Must be over 18. Must like books! :o) 
USA only. 
2 randomly chosen winners each receive 2 autographed Mini Myths books (author's choice). 
Winners names posted here and notified via email (if email provided). 
Promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any social networking site. Ends June 10th. 
Good luck!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Poetry Friday: Otto the Owl Who Loved Poetry

Celebrate Poetry Friday with Vern Kousky's delightful owl, Otto. A secret poet eventually scorned, he finds his voice with the realization that, "Poetry should be shared with everyone." He quotes T.S. Eliot, Joyce Kilmer, and more, while writing his own words. "The more the owls listen, the less they feel like laughing."

"Dear Moon, you must be lonely
so high up in the sky.
I'm sure your heart's so heavy,
sometimes you want to cry."

Enjoy Otto the Bard, today!

Otto the Owl Who Loved Poetry
Vern Kousky
Nancy Paulsen Books, 2015

Thursday, May 21, 2015

More, more, more: Before After

I love this book! Leaving it out on the coffee table, I've seen it engage all ages, totz to seniors. The wordless imagery usually plays across a spread, revealing a "before and after" scene, situation, or object. The touch of humor, or seriousness, and clean illustrations with a gentle palette sustain the page turns. Occasionally a full spread follows a full spread enhancing the beat of the book.

From acorn to tree, to more complicated strings echoing subjects: squid to ink, pigeon to quill pen, quill pen to typewriter, pigeon to airmail letter, the reader is engaged. Pick up this work and be caught between the profound and daily "before and afters." This work deserved a major award.

Before After
by Anne-Margot Ramstein and Matthias Aregui
Candlewick Press, 2014