Monday, February 11, 2019

Open the Garage Door: Christopher Santoro



Here is a lift-the-flap which brings a freshness to the vehicle board book. A car is in the garage; a police car is behind a shrub, and a tractor is in the barn. Aside from doors, clever devices are used, like the shrub, to hide other modes of transportation: a tarp covers a motorcycle, a school bus is beyond the curtained window, and a race flag covers the winner.

Start your engines and open the 11 flaps with your readertotz.

Open the Garage Door...
illustrated by Christopher Santoro
Random House, 2019

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

More, more, more: Chicago Treasure



For those who love Chicago, or are looking for an introduction, Chicago Treasure is now available. Blending city sights, nursery rhymes, stories, fables, and art, local children are photoshopped into illustrations, art, and photography. At times, final art strongly parallel's original source material, including imagery from the Harry Potter series, Disney movies, and The Wizard of Oz film.

With diversity and inclusivity of children with differing abilities, the work is fresh for today's readers. Many students from The Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Disabled participated in the project, and each is child is credited.

Following the first section, "Just Imagine," featuring multicultural stories and rhymes, the "Now Showing!" section places children into art masterpieces. Aside from introducing paintings, the imagery may be a help as tots imagine themselves in relation to fine art.

"Sightings" includes the photoshopped children and animals within scenes of Chicago. Short place descriptions are offered.  Impalas, bears, and zebras accompany adolescents traveling through the city.

A conclusion shares how a few of the children have grown since the project first began. All proceeds are donated to nonprofit groups. You might enjoy this ambitious book of love in honor of Chicago and her children.

Chicago Treasure
Larry Broutman, Rich Green, John Rabias
Lake Claremont Press
Broutman Photography, 2019

Monday, January 28, 2019

Hug Me: Little Bunny, Little Bear




These two little board book, finger puppets will illustrate a parent's love for their tot. Whether taking the wee one dancing, tickling a belly, or sharing a treat, love is shared with a hug at the conclusion of both books.

Digital art is enhanced with soft puppet arms that are easy to manipulate to illustrate the featured spread. The interactive book will offer snuggles to bear, rabbit, and totz alike. 

Hug Me, Finger Puppet Book, Little Bear
Hug Me, Finger Puppet Book, Little Bunny
design by Lydia Ortiz
Chronicle Books, 2019

Friday, January 4, 2019

Top Shelf, Poetry Friday: Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets



Happy Poetry Friday! Our Top Shelf pick today is Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets. Bringing both shapes and Muslim worship to the picture book page, this work is an enriching masterpiece. From the rectangular mosque door to the octagon fountain, acts of worship and their setting in various countries are illuminated.

"Arch is the mihrab
that guides our way.
We stand and face it
each time we pray.

Relish this celebration with your readertotz! Happy Poetry Friday!

Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets
A Muslim Book of Shapes
by Hena Khan
illustrated by Mehrdokht Amini
Chronicle Books, 2018

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Read & Ride, Magical Horses: Liz Mytinger



Welcome, newborn totz, to 2019! The world is wide and wonderful and full of books. As author/illustrators, Joan Holub and I continue to share the best board books which cross our paths. May you find joy in them with your family.

First up this year is Read & Ride Magical Horses. Four shaped board books nest inside a flat book box. When opened, the horses, pegasus, and unicorn have three scenes to meander through. Each horse additionally opens to share his/her story. Chestnut is curious. Blizzard is brave. Flicker is graceful, and Cloud is kind. Active verbs such as soar, gallop, and trot, are illustrated as well as kindness to community.

This dual book and play set will entertain and certainly be beloved by little horse enthusiasts.

Read & Ride Magical Horses
Illustrated by Liz Mytinger
Chronicle Books, March 2019

Friday, December 14, 2018

Poetry Friday: Where Do Diggers Celebrate Christmas?



For your construction worker and transportation enthusiastic totz, there's Where Do Diggers Celebrate Christmas? for the season. Diggers, cherry pickers, tanker trucks and more get into their holiday spirit.

"Where do Zambonis spend Christmas
after all the ice is clear?
Do they skate across a frozen lake,
spreading Christmas cheer?"

A white mouse takes the reader through Brianna Caplan Sayres rocking rhyme and Christian Slade's cheerful illustrations. Happy Christmas Poetry Friday!

Where Do Diggers Celebrate Christmas?
by Brianna Caplan Sayres
illustrated by Christian Slade
Random House, 2018


Saturday, December 8, 2018

Meet the Latkes: Alan Silberberg



Happy Hanukkah! You might celebrate the holiday with this humorous picture book from Alan Silberberg, Meet the Latkes. A family of potato pancakes listens to Grandpa Latke's story, which does include Mega-Bees and alien potatoes. Applesauce, the dog, will set the telling straight for your readertotz.

Humor for your holiday, as the menorah is lit and dreidels are spun.

Meet the Latkes
by Alan Silberberg
Viking, 2018

Monday, October 15, 2018

My Very First 100 Words: English, French, Spanish


Sculpted, crafted, or painted, 100 things are included in My Very First 100 Words in English, French, and Spanish. Each page offers a collection of adorable subjects like "my special things," "at home," or "under the sea."

Whether found objects, crafted content, felted creatures, crocheted or knit gems, each page offers the corresponding English words for the collection pictured, the French term, and then the Spanish. Accompanying, thick flash cards give the specific language words for the objects individually shown. A younger child might match the fox in the book to the el zorro and le renard card. The older child might memorize all three names.

What a fun beginning to learning words in other languages. It is a boost to seeing beyond your child's own spoken word.

My Very First 100 Words in English, French, and Spanish
Cico Kidz, 2018

Friday, October 12, 2018

Poetry Friday: Run Wild



Put down your devices and Run Wild with David Covell this Poetry Friday. The exuberant, free illustrations and his injunctions will scoot you right out the door. Even if there's rain and a fall. Get up and keep going.

"Hey, You.
Sky's blue!
(forget your shoes)
Open
that door
and...

Sprout, you're out!
Chase the wind...
Can you grab it?

Go ahead...
Race a rabbit!
Crunch. Crack. Twig. Snap!

Happy Poetry Friday to you and your totz! Come on and explore!

Run Wild
by David Covell
Viking, 2018

Monday, October 8, 2018

House: by Michael Slack



House, First Words Board Books is a collection of five books which slip into the house-shaped box with die-cut windows. Four little books illustrate objects from the rooms they represent, while the larger book covers the living room. The final double-spread in each book shows the assembled, featured room. A black cat creates continuity with it's appearance. The entire set reads retro and future, simultaneously. Design lovers will soak in the imagery.

Whether it's a locate-the-object book, imaginary play in the house, or simply identifying things in our home, this a beautiful collection.

House, First Word Board Books
by Michael Slack
Chronicle Books, 2018