Wednesday, April 1, 2020

MAPPING SAM by Joyce Hesselberth. New York: Greenwillow Books, 2018. 32p.  ISBN 978-006274122-6 hc. $17.99     Gr. K-3    E PIC

Sam the cat’s nightly trips around the neighborhood show “what is where and how to get from here to there.”  The author engages Sam’s help to highlight different maps and ways of mapping.  Sam shows readers several ways to explore the outdoors in order to get a new perspective on the world and understand it better.  In addition to a geographic map tracing Sam’s movements around the neighborhood, readers are introduced to a transportation map, two biological diagrams, a cutaway view of the pond, a diagram of a water molecule, a world map, a constellation chart that maps the stars, a map of the solar system, and a blueprint of a building.  The clear, colorful illustrations convey a whole new way of thinking about the power of maps and their importance for recording new discoveries.
Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI

Sunday, March 29, 2020

THE PRINCESS AND THE PIT STOP by Tom Angelberger.  Illus. by Dan Santat.  New York: Abrams Books, 2018.  32p.  ISBN 978-14197-28488 hc. $16.99    Gr. K-2    E PIC

The Princess is in a car race against notable fairy tale characters.  When her Fairy Govmother tells her she's in last place in the car race, all the Princess does is step on the gas.  This story is told in a quasi-graphic novel style with colorful illustrations that show the action of the race.  A great book to show the results of not giving up.
Jolene Hetherington, Advisory Board Member, Munising School Public Library

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

MATCHY MATCHY by Erin McGill.  Petaluma, CA: Cameron Kids. 32p  ISBN 978-194490372-5 hc. $16.95     PreS - Gr. 2     E PIC

     Maria lives in a house where everything matches.  Her mom makes sure Maria's outfits match, along with all her hair accessories, socks, and shoes.  Even the house is decorated to match..  Since her Mom has a list of rules for coordinating patterns and colors, Maria makes her own rules and happily makes new combinations of patterns to wear.  Her mom concedes and lets Maria style herself.  The author/illustrator uses stark white backgrounds with eye-popping images that make readers smile, especially the  collage illustrations.
     My daughter developed her own style by the age of 8, beginning with un-matched socks and expanded her sense of fashion from there.  The world has never been the same.
Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI 

Saturday, March 21, 2020

MY PAPI HAS A MOTORCYCLE by Isabel Quintero.  Illus by Zeke Pena.  New York:  Kokila, 2019. 32p.  ISBN: 978-052555341-0 hc. $17.99   Gr. PreS - 3    E PIC

Daisy Ramona waits for her hardworking dad to come home for their nightly motorcycle ride around their town.  The two tour the town greeting the people they know.  Although changes are occurring in their immigrant town, Daisy knows that the love of their neighbors is everlasting as she heads for home with her dad.  This is great story to read when talking about family traditions, as it is a homage to the author and her father's relationship when she was a child.  The illustrations are done in muted colors to signify the past.
Jolene Hetherington, Library Advisory Board, Munising School Public Library

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

FIX THAT CLOCK by Kurt Cyrus.  New York:  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2019.  32p. ISBN978-132890408-9 hc. $17.99     PreS - Gr. 2     E PIC

If you want a book that ties into early elementary curriculum, incorporate FIX THAT CLOCK into your math and poetry units.  The story, about fixing an old, dilapidated clock tower, begins with a short poem that will remind readers of "Hickory Dickory Dock."  Poems with similar meter continue throughout the story as the building project progresses.  The remaining text is composed of double line rhymes.  The mathematical elements in the story consist of using an analog clock face to tell time, and finding geometry in the shapes of the building.  Teachers can throw in some physics for good measure, with the science of gear wheels and inclined planes.  As always, Cyrus tells most of the story with vibrant illustrations that show the happy carpenters working their way to the top of the clock tower.  This book is pure fun.
Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI

Friday, March 13, 2020

IT'S NOT HANSEL AND GRETEL by Josh Funk.  Illus. by Edwardian Taylor.  New York: Two Lions, 2019.  32p.  ISBN: 978-1503902947 hc. $17.99.     Gr. K-3    E PIC

Funk starts with the typical "Hansel and Gretel" story, but then fractures this fairy tale when Hansel and Gretel take over the book with their hilarious banter with the narrator.  The author brings the story into the 21st century when Gretel complains that Hansel is always first and he's the one in the cage, while she has to clean for the witch.  Gretel's complaints change the tenor of the story.  Children and adults with both find humor in changes made to the original writing.  The bold illustrations and conversation bubbles add to the frantic pace of the story.
Jolene Hetherington, Advisory Board Member, Munising School Public Library

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

I WILL BE FIERCE! by Bea Birdsong.  Illus. by Nidhi Chanani. New ork: Roaring Brook Press, 2019.  32p.  ISBN: 978-125029508-8 hc. $17.99   PreS - Gr. 2    E PIC

A young girl starts a new day with the positive attitude of "I will be fience!"  Her affirmations show her to be brave, adventurous, face fears, learn knowledge, solve problems, stand up for her beliefs and find new ways of doing things.  The illustrations allow the reader to interpret the back story for each affirmation.  A wonderful book to encourage students to find their own way and stand up for what they believe in.
Jolene Hetherington, Advisory Board Member, Munising School Public Library