5 A Day Keep the Doctor Away

Week 3!  I feel my Reader’s Advisory skills vastly improving… Now I just need to work on my memory and remembering the titles/authors of these books rather than all the other information about them…

Monday, October 15, 2012

Kel Gilligan’s Daredevil Stunt Show by Michael Buckley, illustrated Dan Santat

Kel performs amazing feats like eating broccoli, using the potty, and getting dressed by himself!  Told in graphic novel format from first-person POV, this book is fun for kids who need coaxing to try new things or need encouragement to be a little more independent.  Kel succeeds in most of his challenges, but Dad steps in to take care of the monsters under his bed.  Some tasks are best left to the professionals.  I thought this book was pretty funny and think it might be usable for storytime, depending on the presentation angle I take.

Oh no! Not again! (Or How I Built A Time Machine To Save History) (Or At Least My History Grade) by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Dan Santat

Also told in Graphic Novel format, the fantastic illustrations really drive this story.  This mad genius gets a question on where the first cave painting was discovered wrong on her history test so she decides to take her time machine way way back and fix her little test problem.  Through a series of events, it turns out she changes much more than that one question… A fun picture book for older readers.

Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs as retold by Mo Willems

Another Mo Willems hit, this fractured fairy tale is hilarious.  The dinosaurs are not so slickly trying to lure Goldilocks into their lair to eat her.    They cook “three bowls of delicious chocolate pudding at varying temperatures” and go “Someplace Else and were definitely not hiding in the woods waiting for an unsuspecting kid to come by”.  The morals of the story at the end are amusing.  This is a great book to use as a lesson on fractured fairy tales.

1-2-3 Peas by Keith Baker

A cute counting book.  Starts off with 1s and then switches to counting by tens, all the way to 100.  I love books that deal with peas, such as Little Pea, so I was pretty sure I was going to love this one too.  Very cute and good for pre-schoolers through Kinder to work on counting skills.

Chato’s Kitchen by Gary Soto, illustrated by Susan Guevara

Chato is an East LA living cat who wants to eat some mice.  He entices them into his lair but through a series of events ends up making friends rather than dinner.  Through beautiful language, Soto incorporates Spanish into his work.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Randy Riley’s Really Big Hit by Chris Van Dusen

Randy Riley plays baseball, but he’s not very good and his heart just isn’t into it.  Randy Riley LOVES science.  Watching through his telescope he sees a giant fireball heading towards Earth.  No one believes him until its practically in the Earth’s atmosphere and luckily for Randy Riley, he’d been preparing for the day and saved the Earth.  Even though he’s not very good, he continues to play baseball.  Told in rhyme, this story might be for the kid who loves sports but just isn’t very good at them.

Teach Your Buffalo to Play Drums by Audrey Vernick, illustrated by Daniel Jennewein

I feel like this book tried to take aspects of at least 3 different excellent children’s stories and put them into one book.  It didn’t have a good cadence and the story seemed choppy.  They probably could have used half the words and conveyed more meaning.

Polka-Dot Fixes Kindergarten by Catherine Urdahl, illustrated by Mai S. Kemble

I did not like this story very much, especially with the illustrations.  Besides the teacher, there is only one child in the whole class that is obviously of color and she is the bully who is nothing but mean to Polka-Dot.  When Polka-Dot calls the girl out on her meanness, Polka-Dot becomes the bigger person and fixes the mean girls problem and then they become best friends.  No one has to say I’m sorry or really fix anything.  I was not a fan.

The Getaway by Ed Vere

Mouse steals the cheese, Mouse tries to escape from the elephant, Mouse gets caught and escapes prison.  Your role in the story is to whistle when you see the elephant, but you don’t do a very good job, hence leading to mouse’s capture.  This story seemed a little too frenetic for me.  Might be fun for a child who likes graphic novel format, but probably an older childre, K or 1st.

Help! A Story of Friendship by Holly Keller

A story about not believing rumors and trusting your friends, this story was okay.  Maybe I’m just not in a picture book mood today since I seem to not have really liked any of the stories I read. This one of course had a nice wrap-up and everyone learned a lesson.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

We just got anew cart of books from tech services.  Time to enjoy before letting them loose on the patrons!

The Great Sheep Shenanigans by Peter Bently & Mei Matsuoka

Sheep tries his hardest to trick some lambs for dinner, but Rambo Ram keeps trying to interrupt his shenanigans.  He intimidates Red Riding Hood’s granny to make him a sheep coat, but she gets hers in the end by playing an even bigger trick.  Told in rhyme, this is a good pre-school book.

Cock-a-Doodle-Doo, Creak, Pop-pop, Moo by Jim Aylesworth, illustrated by Brad Sneed

A book full of sounds, this story was meant to read out-loud.  Hey!  I’m a poet and didn’t even know it there.  A day in the life of kids on a farm, this is a different kind of farm book for the slightly older pre-k and K crowd.

The Man in the Clouds by Koos Meinderts & Annette Fienieg

A very sad book, this is the story of an old man who falls into the trap of greed and posession.  At first, the man who lives at the top of the mountain welcomes anyone and everyone to look at his beautiful painting for as long as they liked – regardless of occupation, social status, or gender identity.  He just wants to share the beauty of the painting.  People re-pay him for this kindness with little things like bread and a marble and songs.  Then one day a business man passing through town comes and points out to the old man how much money he could get for the painting.  The old man goes crazy after that.  Never before seeing monetary value in the painting, he begins limiting people to see it, eventually not letting anyone see it, and hiding it so that thieves don’t get it.  In the end, he realizes the absurdity of this and deals with the situation, and in the end finds beauty in his own back yard.  This seemed like it would be good for older kids but maybe more-so their parents.  Possessions are nothing but trouble.

Dini Dinosaur by Karen Beaumont, illustrated by Daniel Roode

A cute bedtime or bath time book, Dini Dinosaur keeps trying to scrub himself clean with his clothes on.  The majority of the story goes something like this:  He tried to wash his feet, Silly Dinosaur – you can’t wash your feet with your shoes on, Mom helps him take off his shoes and we go another round with his legs, shirt, etc.  I liked it a lot, but I have to wonder, as Dini takes off each piece of clothing, why doesn’t mom tell him to take off the rest rather than doing this one by one?  🙂

Children of Hat Cottage by Elsa Beskow

This book was weird.  In the middle I thought it was kind of endearing and might be nice for a grandparent to share one on one with their grandchild, but by the end, I was like WTF is going on.  So to summarize, Little guy that looks like a gnome lives on the mainland, across a body of water which has an island directly across.  On the island live a woman and her 3 kids who live in a house shaped like a hat.  One day, the woman needs to go to the mainland for some cotton to make the kids new clothes so she tells them to be good.  Needless to say, they literally burn the house down.  The gnome rushes over and helps the kids put out the fire and build a new house and tucks them in to bed before mom gets home.  When she gets home, he explains to her what happened and she’s distraught because they’ve lost everything!  So the gnome says, marry me and I’ll take care of you and your kids and she says Okay!  And they live happily ever after.  Random.  This book was originally published in Swedish in 1930.  I’m not exactly sure why it was reprinted in 2012 and why my library bought a copy… LoL.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Piggy Bunny by Racel Vail, illustrated by Jeremy Tankard

Loved this book.  A pig who wants to be the Easter Bunny but everyone in his family tells him its impossible – except for his grandma who helps him to make his dreams come true.


Hop, hop, jump! by  Lauren Thompson, illustrated by Jarrett J. Krosoczka

A good storytime book, the kids can move along with the story.  Not much of a storyline, but teaching them different motions is always fun in my opinion.


Huff & Puff by Claudie Rueda

A simplified 3 pigs and the wolf with an everyone was happy ending.  This might be cute to have the kids act as the big bad wolf and try to blow the houses of the pigs down.  In the end, everyone gets cake is all are happy.  The relationship between the pigs and the wolf is not initially known.  It would be good to use in different tellings of the 3 little pigs as well.

How Do You Feed A Hungry Giant?:  A Munch-And-Sip Pop-Up Book by Caitlin Friedman, illustrated by Shaw Nielsen

This story reminded me of the very hungry caterpillar, although the end was a little bit of a let down since the giant just gets fed and nothing snazzy happens.  There wasn’t much pop-up to the story – mostly die cuts and lift the flap types of things, but they were fun none the less.  This might work for a group who loves the very hungry caterpillar but is starting to outgrow it and wants something a little more grown up.

House Held Up By Trees by Ted Kooser, illustrated by Jon Klassen

A sad story of a father who maintains his lawn, keeps away trees and weeds, and once his children move away, he moves away and no one wants to live in the house.  Eventually, wildlife takes over and the trees move in, eventually lifting the house in to the sky.  The story seemed touching, but I’m not entirely sure what the message is here.  Maybe that no matter how hard you try, nature will take over and win?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Georgia in Hawaii:  When Georgia O’Keeffe Painted What She Pleased by Amy Novesky, illustrated by Yuyi Morales

This book glossed over a lot of the issues that Georgia experienced dealing with the Hawaiian Pineapple Company which would later become Dole.  HPC wanted something very specific from her but she wanted to do it on her own terms.  She wanted to stay in the fields but they wouldn’t let her (insert terrible conditions for hawaiians).  In the end, Georgia buckles and gives the company what they want, but its not clear why.  Her experience of Hawai’i is purely magical, like everyone else’s stereotypical portrayals of the islands.  Disappointing but not surprising.  The illustrations were beautiful, however.

Spotty, Stripy, Swirly:  What Are Patterns?  by Jane Brocket

A good concept book, this book shows lots of different examples of patterns and how they can work together.  Using photographs to show real life examples, this book is a good tool for pre-schoolers and Kinders to see patterns in the world around them.

All By Myself!  by Geraldine Collet, illustrated by Coralie Saudo

The hens leave the chicks all by themselves while they go searching for grain.  While the mothers are gone, the chicks worry what they will do if their mothers never return or if they’re threatened by another animal.  In the end, the mothers come back and everyone is happy.  They eat the grain and want to do it all by themselves.  I wasn’t really a fan of this book.  I thought it would put more fears than necessary into little kids’ minds like abandonment and intruders.  There wasn’t much for the little chicks to do all by themselves confidently except eat.

The Spaghetti-Slurping Sewer Serpent by Laura Ripes, illustrated by Aaron Zenz

A cute story about a boy who thinks there is a Spaghetti-Slurping Sewer Serpent in the sewers of his neighborhood.  Not a storytime book, but a good one on one sharing book.  Lots of tongue-twisters included which will be fun to try out and good to work on the S sounds.


Happy by Mies Van Hout

A book all about emotions, these chalk drawings show fish feeling different things like brave, afraid, and sure.  A cute, simple book.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s