This clever rhyming picture book will have you jumping along too! Each little animal is just minding their own business, when along comes a bigger animal that makes them JUMP! Well, wouldn’t you jump if you were a cat, a fat little cat and were sleeping on a mat, and then you see a hound?? – wouldn’t you JUMP? The simple sing-songy rhythm of the story is infectious, and I think little kids and grown-ups will love it!
Posted by: Mary
The Library is celebrating its 100th Anniversary this year and we are doing it up big this summer with our Summer Reading Club, “Celebrate 100 Years of Reading.” When I was trying to think of books that fit the summer theme this book jumped into my head and would not jump out. It combines everything that I love about celebrations; big parties, delicious cake, and most importantly, a good story.
Jack is delighted when he receives an invitation to the princess’s birthday party until his mother reminds him that they do not have any money to purchase the princess a birthday present. That doesn’t stop Jack though. Living up to his name, the clever boy trades and sweet talks his way through the village collecting the ingredients to make a wonderful cake for the princess. He even kisses the cow on her nose for a pail of her sweetest milk.
Alas, the cake is not the happy conclusion one would hope for Jack and the princess. As he walks to the palace he must fight off a series of hungry villains that each eat a part of the princess’s cake. In fact, when Jack reaches the princess, there is nothing left of the cake to give the princess. As Jack explains what happened, the princess’s eyes grow wide and when his explanation is done the princess claps with delight because Jack gave her something no one else did, a wonderful adventure story.
You can find Clever Jack Takes the Cake and more stories, adventures and even cake this summer at the Library as we “Celebrate 100 Years of Reading!” The Summer Reading Club runs from June 7th to August 18th. Come in and sign up today!
Posted by: Kelly
Although it might not feel like it, spring is here. One of my favorite springtime stories to share is Fran’s Flower. In this story, a little girl finds a plant and decides she wants to make it grow. Unfortunately, she decides it needs food and feeds it a piece of cheeseburger, some spaghetti, ice cream and even a chocolate chip cookie. Of course, this doesn’t help the plant grow and fed up with the flower she throws it out the door. Once outside, the flower gets all the things it needs, and it grows! The colorful illustrations add to the fun. Before you start planting, share this one along with The Carrot Seed by Krauss.
Posted by: Liz
When you find a best friend, you want to hold on to him! And anyway, life is sooo… much better with a friend – you can play together and swim together, swimming over and under and all around. Such is the life of two happy friends, Nugget a minnow, and Fang a shark, until Nugget goes off to school. Then, everything is different for Fang and Nugget. At school, Nugget learns lots of new things about the world and his place in it, including the unsettling fact that sharks EAT minnows!!! Nugget cannot believe this and tries to convince his schoolmates that his friend Fang could never hurt anyone.
Eventually though, Nugget does start to believe the rumors and reluctantly lets go of his friendship with Fang. Of course Fang is lost without his best friend and tries everything he can think of to win his friend back. Sadly though, nothing works, until a giant net captures Nugget and the other little fish, and Fang must come to their rescue. In the end, everyone lets go of their old ideas about their shark friend, and the ELEVEN friends live happily ever after, swimming over and under and all around. This book would make a good read-aloud, and there are some wonderful lessons to be learned as well. The illustrations are very colorful and appealing. Really fun!
Posted by: Mary
Mixed up alphabet books are not hard to find in the picture book section, and for good reason. They offer children who have mastered linear alphabet stories but are still learning to decode letters and learn letter sounds a unique way to do that. When done well, mixed up alphabet books are delightful for older preschoolers and their caregivers and offer lots of zany, educational fun.
A is for Musk Ox is one such mixed up alphabet book. Told as a dialogue between a musk ox who is tired of only being featured on one page of the alphabet book and his zebra friend who would really prefer the alphabet remain orderly. The musk ox, who we learn on the “J” page is named Joseph starts by eating the apple on the “A” page and replacing it with himself because musk oxen are”awesome” after all. The musk ox barges his way through the alphabet with corrective tape covering babies, clowns and more so that he is prominently featured on each page while the zebra tries in vain to stop him. The collage style illustrations are bold and full of whimsy and offer so much detail that children will love looking through this book over and over again. As an added bonus, the musk ox’s self-centered mission allows readers to learn all about the animal. This would be an excellent choice for children in later preschool all the way through older elementary school.
Posted by: Kelly
A young penguin discovers a cold pinecone and knits him a scarf. Even though he loves his new friend, he returns it to the forest where he belongs. He tells the pinecone that he will always be in his heart. Penguin continues to think about the pinecone and wonder if he has grown big and strong. He eventually returns to visit it. When he does, he discovers that his pinecone is still wearing the scarf and has grown into a tree. This is a sweet story about love and caring for others.
Posted by: Liz
Little dragon is one amazing fire breather until one day, during a particularly splash-filled bath, he accidentally douses his spark. When his flame goes out, Little Dragon fears that his mother will no longer love him, so he does what any resourceful dragon would do and tries to reignite that spark through various warming methods including rubbing his belly, putting on lots of warm clothes, and eating super-hot peppers. Nothing seems to work, however, and Little Dragon has no choice but to tell his mother what has happened. Little Dragon is relieved to find that his mother still loves him even without his flame. Then, to his surprise, he notices something warm in his belly. Could it be that his mother’s love has reignited the spark?
This adorable tale of unconditional love is told through bold yet simple illustrations of a bright blue Little Dragon set against a black and white background. Realistic images of Little Dragon’s flame, chili peppers, and a few other items are sprinkled throughout, adding a lively contrast to the charming dragon. Little Dragon’s exuberance and silliness provide balance and freshness for the familiar subject matter of motherly love, making this a fun read-aloud for parents of children in preschool through second grade.
Posted by: Staci
Sometimes your bad reputation precedes you, and it doesn’t matter what you do – you will be the one to get in trouble every time! That is exactly what happens in Here Comes Trouble! Our main character, Toby the dog, does not like cats – not slinky cats or spunky cats or snooty cats or snobby cats – not ANY cats. He thinks cats can just do whatever they want and NEVER get in trouble, including the cat who lives next door. Toby on the other hand gets into plenty of trouble and always seem be getting caught.
When the neighbor cat Pandora comes to stay and everyone thinks she is simply perfect, Toby knows better. He sees when she scratches up the sofa, and when she claws the curtains, and when she leaps up on the kitchen counter and samples the cake and simply prances off licking her whiskers. The trouble is, no one else ever notices, and so when Pandora gets herself into real trouble by climbing up a tree and getting stuck, Toby is the only one who can come to her rescue. He tries to bark to tell someone, but they just tell him to be quiet; he tries to run circles around the tree to get them to notice, but they just tell him to slow down. Finally Toby must use his muddy paws to write the message “CAT IN TREE”, which finally brings help running. In the end, Toby and Pandora find a way to be friends, and to get into trouble TOGETHER, which is always much more fun. This is a very fun read!
Posted by: Mary
To be honest, it was the colorful cover depicting a cute little green crocodile carrying an oversized flowery change purse that first caught my eye. Upon further inspection, it was the delightful illustrations within Little Croc’s Purse, as well as the story itself, that continued to keep me smiling.
What would you do if you found someone’s purse and it was full of money? Would you keep the money to buy yourself something special? Would you share some of the money with your friends? Would you give the money to someone needy? Would you turn the purse over to police who could hopefully track down its owner?
Little Croc has found a purse full of money and is faced with the dilemma of what to do. His friends (as well as the local bully) try to convince him of how he should best use his sudden windfall. But he knows what the right thing to do is and his conscience guides him in making his decision to turn the purse over to the police. When the owner is found, she is so happy to find her most precious treasure hidden inside the lining of her purse that she gives Little Croc a generous reward. Little Croc is gobsmacked at her generosity. What he does next is just perfect.
What a sweet treasure to discover hidden within the “lining” of this book. Honesty, sharing and giving – we all sometimes can use a reminder about these values.
Posted by: Wendy
Willie’s mom needs to go out, and Willie needs a babysitter. Who’s coming to watch him? Uncle Bill! Uncle Bill (who has spiky hair and dances while he makes lunch) is a bit crazy, but Willie (in his checked pants and big stripey shirt) is more than a match for him. As their names suggest, these two are kindred spirits, in spite of their difference in age.
Want to cover up the results of a bad scissors experiment? Need a co-chef to create the latest version of Icky Stew? Interested in a sneaky, musical, nighttime excursion? Uncle Bill is your man (and Willie is his able sidekick).
Amy Schwartz has created an adorable little book about every child’s dream babysitter (and dream relative!), and her delightful illustrations enhance the text perfectly.
Posted by: Sarah