Sunday, October 30, 2011

Baby Einstein: First Book of Baby Farm Animals

This large board book format from Baby Einstein will be certain to intrigue your totz. Who lives on the farm? Who lives near the pond or in the barn? What do you hear from the baby animals? Multiple sliding windows will keep little fingers busy. Sturdy construction will hold up for many, many readings.

What I found intriguing in this work is the combination of illustration and photography which offers dual opportunities for recognition. An illustrated cow is shown on the same spread with a photo of a cow. Totz will enjoy this First Book of Baby Farm Animals.

First Book of Baby Farm Animals
by Patricia Van Note
Disney Press, 2011

Friday, October 28, 2011

Poetry Friday: North, the Amazing Story of Arctic Migration

"At the very top
     of our world
is a huge wild place
called the Arctic.
Here in winter, the sun
     sinks away,
blizzards fill the darkness,
and even the seas
      freeze deep."

Celebrate poetry in nonfiction! Watch for this gem to be released in January. You'll feel as if you and your totz are joining the migration in this incredibly, beautiful book.

North, the Amazing Story of Arctic Migration
by Nick Dowson
illustrated by Patrick Benson
Candlewick Press, January, 2012

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Emma Dodd: I Am Small

I really enjoyed this book! It's board book size and will fit nicely in small hands, but the interior pages are sturdy paper rather than actual board. Told from the perspective of a baby penguin, the simple text captures a true totz voice in describing the bigness of the world compared to a totz' small size. The illustrations are white, black, and dusky blue, with hints of silver foil. The antics of baby penguin are cute as he frolics in beautifully quiet, wintry scenes, along with much bigger adults.

The world is big and I am small.

The sky is high, the ocean deep, and the mountains steep, but baby penguin knows how big he is in the hearts of his parents. The ending definitely has the "oh, how sweet!" factor!

Emma Dodd is the creator of the Dot and Dash board book series, and lives in Surrey England.

I Am Small
Author-illustrator: Emma Dodd
Scholastic, Cartwheel Books, September 2011

Friday, October 21, 2011

Poetry Friday: The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories

"Once of upon of a time, way down south,
Lived a very big bear with a very big mouth
And very big teeth in his very big jaws
And very big claws in his very big paws.
And this very big bear, who was hunting for meat,
One day spied a rabbit who looked good to eat."

From "The Rabbit, the Bear, and the Zinniga-Zanniga." Happy Poetry Friday!

The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories
by Dr. Seuss
Random House, 2011

Monday, October 17, 2011

Oh, David! A Pocket Library: David Shannon

Today's recommend is Oh, David! A Pocket Library from David Shannon. The Blue Sky Press has gathered the previously published Diaper David board books into a perfect set for small hands. And if your totz haven't met David, here's a great format to introduce them to that realistic rascal.

The included three works in the boxed set are Oh, David!, Oops!, and David Smells! The latter covers senses, and Oops! is a collection of adorable first words like "Ahh!", and "Whee!" Oh, David! illustrates what Mommy always said to David, including, "Oh, David, I love you."

Shannon's illustrations continue to feel fresh with great energy. David's scribbled black eyes will engage every reader. Perspectives are varied and carry rich color. When you line the three books up in their case, the spines collectively show David peeking at you, one more time. There's a sweet reminiscence conjured in two of the books being told in past tense.

I can imagine the older sibling reading Oh, David! picture books, and then thoroughly enjoying sharing this board book set with readertotz. Everyone will love seeing David as a toddler in these three works!

Oh, David! A Pocket Library
by David Shannon
The Blue Sky Press, 2011

Friday, October 14, 2011

Poetry Friday: October, For the Older Sibling

Aha! I'm combining Poetry Friday with the recommend for the Older Sibling of your totz. It's a perfect fit.

Chirchir is Singing is a quiet, beautiful book full of poetry, suspense, and assurance of one's worth. I was charmed to enter Africa and was captivated by Kelly Cunnane's text. Jude Daly's illustrations are sparse and open, hinting at the vast spaces Chirchir inhabits.

Listen to the opening spread:

"High in Africa,
wind like a cat paw
wipes the sky clean.
Chirchir, Born Quickly, is singing.

Jambo! Hello! Day is growing tall.
Wake up to green sunlight and rooster's call!
"I'm going to help Mama today," Chirchir announces to Rooster,
whose feathers shimmer like fire.
And away she runs."

The language sustains as we enter Chirchir's daily work in Kenya. Share this exquisite work with the older siblings of your totz. And enjoy Poetry Friday!

Chirchir is Singing
by Kelly Cunnane
illustrated by Jude Daly
Schwartz & Wade Books, 2011

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Boo Who? A Spooky Lift-the-Flap 15th anniversary!

Boo Who?

Fifteen years ago in 1996, I got "the call" from Scholastic. The one that meant I would finally be a published book author. While some of my other books for children have faded away over the years, Boo Who? is still in print and going strong. My editor at Scholastic tells me it's on the front Barnes & Noble tables again this year.

What's inside? A cast of Halloween characters to guess, large flaps to lift, and a mylar mirror on the last page. It's a not-too-spooky introduction to the characters that make up this holiday I so enjoyed as a tot.

Guess who says boo?
A ghost
Scratch and hiss? Who is this? 
A black cat

It's also at the library in my city, so you might visit your library soon to take a look because those Halloween books fly off the shelf this time of year. If you get a chance to take a look, I hope your totz enjoy it!

Boo Who? A Spooky Lift-the-Flap Book
Scholastic (Cartwheel Books)
Ages 2-6
Author-illustrator: Joan Holub

Friday, October 7, 2011

Poetry Friday: A Dog is a Dog

"A dog is a dog,
whether it's naughty...
...or nice.
Whether it suns on the beach,
or glides on the ice.
A dog is a dog, if it's skinny or fat.
A dog is a dog, unless it's a...

Keep an eye out for this surprising picture book from Stephan Shaskan. You can celebrate Poetry Friday with your totz and their siblings while you all giggle together! Because a dog is a dog, unless...

A Dog is a Dog
by Stephan Shaskan
Chronicle Books, November, 2011

Monday, October 3, 2011

Guess How Much I Love You, the Pop-Up Edition

I always rejoice when a book reaches its perfect format. The classic Guess How Much I Love You has been released as a pop-up, and it's perfect.

If you wonder how Sam McBratney's text and Anita Jeram's illustrations could be any better, then you must see them combined with Corina Fletcher's paper engineering. The pop-ups further illustrate the story, which is what gives them greater meaning. Little Nutbrown Hare holds onto Big Nutbrown Hare's ear; the latter's arms truly are long and extend widely, and reach clear out of the book to illustrate love.

Two complete scenes unfold at the book's conclusion. One enables you to help Big Nutbrown Hare to kiss Little Nutbrown Hare goodnight. Exquisite.

Big Nutbrown Hare still has the last word, which must ultimately be a comfort to totz. Although, I always did have a pang reading this work. I wanted Little Nutbrown Hare to win the exchange. So maybe, Big Nutbrown Hare whispers his last phrase, after Little Nutbrown Hare is asleep. That may be just my choice. You?

Guess How Much I Love You, 
the Pop-Up Edition
by Sam McBratney
illustrated by Anita Jeram
engineered by Corina Fletcher
Candlewick Press, 2011