Monday, February 25, 2013

MA! There's Nothing to Do Here! Barbara Park

Every now and then Joan and I will run across a book and say, "Why didn't we think of that?" It's a book waiting to be born, right on the tip of our tongues. And we have to celebrate its birth, because it is so perfect. Ma! There's Nothing to Do Here! A Word from Your Baby-in-Waiting by Barbara Park, illustrated by Viviana Garofoli, is that book this time. It was first released as a picture book in 2008 and now is in a most excellent form: a board book!

"My choices are slim.
There is no room to swim.
I'm so tired of floating.
I'd love to go boating,
But where's the canoe?
There's nothing to do!"

Spot on, right? Pair that text with Garofoli's delightful illustrations, and you'll find you've never seen a cuter placenta.

Your readertotz will enjoy thinking of what their sibling might be doing in vitro or how they occupied the womb-time on their own. The sturdy pages are ready for little hands. Enjoy!

MA! There's Nothing to Do Here!
by Barbara Park
illustrated by Vivana Garofoli
Random House

Friday, February 22, 2013

Poetry Friday: Round is a Tortilla, a Book of Shapes

Here's a beautiful suggestion for Poetry Friday: Round is a Tortilla, A Book of Shapes by Roseanne Greenfield Thong, illustrated by John Parra. Watch for the release March 19th.

Round are sombreros.
     Round is the moon.
Round are the trumpets
     that blare out a tune.

Round are campanas
     that chime and ring.
Round are the nests
     where swallows sing.

Such lovely poetry and paintings. Happy Poetry Friday!

Round is a Tortilla, a Book of Shapes
by Roseanne Greenfield Thong
illustrated by John Parra
Chronicle Books, March 19, 2013

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Whose Toes Are Those?: Sally Symes and Nick Sharratt

On each spread of this board book, totz will see the tail end and the nose of an animal character that covers both pages. However, its mid-section (and the middle of the spread) is covered by an environmental clue. Totz are also provided with 3 question-clues. For instance, in one of my favorite spreads:

Whose tail?
Whose toes?
Whose big gray nose?
(There’s a jungle shown in the middle of the spread, going across the middle fold.)

(Turn ½ page flap to remove environmental clue and reveal entire animal.)

A bright, colorful, clever book that will keep totz guessing and turning the pages all the way to the last spread, where the character is a baby.

Author: Sally Symes
Illustrator: Nick Sharratt

Friday, February 15, 2013

Poetry Friday: The Longest Night

Dip into Poetry Friday with The Longest Night, a Passover Story by Laurel Snyder and illustrated by Catia Chien.

On the day we killed the lamb,
Aba wiped his bloody hands,

Marked the post above the door,
Drank and ate and said no more.

Till--the saddest sound, so stark.
Cries like knives that split the dark.

Cries that found us, frozen, numb,
Woke us, made us rise and run.

Brilliant, yes? Don't miss this beautiful celebration of Passover. Happy Poetry Friday!

The Longest Night, a Passover Story
by Laurel Snyder
illustrated by Catia Chien
Schwartz & Wade Books, 2013

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Board Book, Please: 10 Hungry Rabbits

I thought to start a series of posts for when Joan and I discover a picture book which would make an excellent board book. Our first is by Anita Lobel, 10 Hungry Rabbits. This adorable picture book is screaming to be formatted as a picture book. The counting and color concepts are perfect for totz.

3 Three
The third rabbit broke off THREE YELLOW peppers.
4 Four
The fourth rabbit picked FOUR RED tomatoes.

Obvious, right? So, please, Knopf. Give us a board book!

10 Hungry Rabbits
by Anita Lobel
Knopf, 2012

Monday, February 11, 2013

Big Girl Panties: Fran Manushkin

Graduation from diapers to panties is worth celebrating. Fran Manushkin's text paired with Valeria Petrone's art will jump start your party.

Happy panties!
Snappy panties!
Panties! Panties! Hip hooray!
Panties for every single day.

So if your tot is moving toward this milestone, make it easier with this fun board book. The flat shapes and catchy rhythm will have your panties dancing.

Big  Girl Panties
by Fran Manushkin
illustrated by Valeria Petrone
Robin Corey Books, 2012

Thursday, February 7, 2013

February Big Kid Pick: The Odyssey

The Odyssey

There are times when you find a book in your hands, and you just know that it represents the best work of an author and illustrator. I think of it as a lifework. The Odyssey by Gillian Cross, illustrated by Neil Packer, is one of those books.

Gillian takes Homer's epic and makes it accessible to young and old. The story flows with beautiful pacing and language. Causing those words to resonate are Packer's masterful illustrations. With a nod to Greek vase painting and his own expressionistic style, the story blossoms. You can sit and stare at the detailed paintings, and then find, you have to share the amazing images with someone else.

Candlewick's production honors the creation. The paper quality is rich, thick, and smooth, while the larger book size lets the reader relish Odysseus's journey.

This work is a treasure, a must-have for your family. Find it.

The Odyssey
by Homer
retold by Gillian Cross
illustrated by Neil Packer
Candlewick Press, 2012

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Huggy Kissy: Leslie Patricelli

Lorie Ann and I are huge fans of Leslie Patricelli and her “bald baby” character. Her Yummy Yucky and Quiet Loud are two of my personal favorite board books. Although her little guy has loads of personality of his own, he has a universal quality that makes us want to give him a HUGGY!

In this book, baby is looking for something: Hugs and kisses.

Tuggy, tuggy.
(baby tugging at busy dad’s pants leg)

Huggy, huggy?
(baby open-armed; looking adorably wistful and ready for a hug)

(His hopes are met with dad hugging him.)
Squeeze, squeeze.
Don’t stop please!

As the book continues, we see all kinds of hugs and kisses, including an uncle’s scratchy embrace and an auntie’s squishy one. And baby has hugs and kisses of his own to bestow, including a hug for blankie and a kiss for fishy.

A great book for anytime, but especially for December holidays or Valentine’s Day!

Author-Illustrator: Leslie Patricelli
Candlewick, 2012

Friday, February 1, 2013