“'There's cold chicken inside it,' replied the Rat briefly; 'coldtonguecoldhamcoldbeefpickledgherkinssaladfrench

'O stop, stop,' cried the Mole in ecstacies: 'This is too much!'”
-- from
The Wind in the Willows

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Flip the Flaps Planet Earth • Lift-the-Flap Picture book

by Dr. Mike Goldsmith  illustrated by Nicki Palin
Available Now! Kingfisher Nonfiction picture book Ages 3-6
There’s discovery waiting under every flap!
Story:  Preschoolers sure have plenty of questions about this planet we call home. This book encourages young geologists to lift the flap (embedded in spine of each book) to discover why volcanoes explode, what causes earthquakes, the amazing variety of life on the planet, and more. Plus, readers can exercise observation skills by spotting-the-difference when they flip the flap.
Story behind the story: Dr. Mike Goldsmith studied the philosophy of time and space at Keele University, where he also obtained his PhD in astrophysics. He was formerly the head of Acoustics at the UK’s National Physical Laboratory and is now an author of non-fiction books for children. Nicki Palin is an accomplished illustrator of numerous books for Kingfisher, including Flip the Flaps Baby Animals.  In FLIP THE FLAPS PLANET EARTH, text and art work together to appeal not only to the child interested in science and those general question-asking kids, but also to visual learners and kids who learn best by interacting with the material. "This is an informative book that will engage readers in a tactile way as they explore the text. . . . Some of the illustrations are labeled, providing additional nontextual information for readers. This book would be a nice inclusion in a classroom or school library because it builds on the natural curiosity of young children. . . . While the information is very general, it's appropriate for younger children who have questions such as “What is it like deep underground?” or “What is at the bottom of the ocean?" -- National Science Teachers Association Recommends.  The Horn Book adds "the approach is visually appealing." 
FYI:  All the review copies for this title have been sent.  Please check back and see the "comments" link to read what your colleagues have to say...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Liberty's Voice: The Story of Emma Lazarus • Picture book biography

Liberty's Voice: The Story of Emma Lazarus
by Erica Silverman  illustrated by Stacey Schuett 
Just out  Dutton Children's Books  ages 6 - 9 
 "Silverman's ode to one of the most deserving woman in history is a picture book extraordinaire." - Kids Home Library
Story:  Emma Lazarus overcame the barriers of her day to become one of the leading poets of the nineteenth century. She used her celebrity to help the poor and impoverished immigrants of Eastern Europe. When the statue Liberty Enlightening the World came to the United States as a gift from France, it was Emma's poem "The New Colossus" that became forever connected with this American icon. Emma's words have served as a rallying call to generations of immigrants. In breathtaking color, veteran artist Stacey Schuett brings life to Erica Silverman's story of one of the great women of America.
Story behind the story: Here's a note from author Erica Silverman:

Dear Reader,
From childhood on, I’ve loved poetry. So did Emma Lazarus.
Emma’s ancestors came to this country seeking safety and freedom. So did mine.
Immigrants became important to her life’s work.  I taught English as a Second Language to immigrants for 14 years. As a librarian, many of my patrons come from all over the world.
Reading Emma’s poems, articles and letters, I was deeply moved by her passion for poetry and justice, which led her, in 1883, to write the powerful poem that to this day defines the Statue of Liberty.
Emma fought for immigrants’ rights back when women had few rights.  I hope you find her to be as inspiring a role model as I have."

Link to Teacher’s/Reader’s  Guide

"With colorful, lively illustrations and energetic writing, Silverman's ode to one of the most deserving woman in history is a picture book extraordinaire." - Kids Home Library

"The evocative illustrations marry well with this accessible, appealing story of a woman both ahead of her time and an important American writer who left a lasting literary legacy to every United States citizen..."
- School Library Journal
FYI:  All the review copies for this title have been sent.  Please check back and see the "comments" link to read what your colleagues have to say...

Friday, February 4, 2011

Raj the Bookstore Tiger • Picture book

Just out! • Charlesbridge • Ages 4-8
Books make everything better.
Story:  Being a bookstore tiger is hard work. There’s much patrolling, and a lot of sitting in laps at story hour, and then there’s sleeping in the window display. But Raj is up to the task. He is fierce and proud—until Snowball comes along. The new cat in the bookstore informs Raj that he’s just a marmalade kitty-cat. Times get tough, then, for the bookstore tiger. But bookstore and Raj owner Felicity, with the help of poet William Blake, knows how to fix things. In turn, with a very special book, Raj is able to fix things with Snowball.
Story behind the story:  I had the pleasure of corresponding with author Kathleen T. Pelley and asked her a few questions about how this book came to be.  Here's what she had to say:   "As a little girl, growing up in Scotland, I fell in love with stories before I could read or write, by listening to the children's Story Hour on the BBC. Today I continue to share that passion for words, not just by writing stories, but also by reading aloud to children at an inner city elementary school.

My latest picture book, RAJ THE BOOKSTORE TIGER, is a story that celebrates the power of reading aloud. Raj, a marmalade kitty cat, who is convinced that he is a tiger, begins to doubt himself when a visiting cat mocks his "tigerness." Fortunately, his owner, Felicity Fotheringham, a lover of words and books, knows just the right poem to read aloud to Raj, "Tyger! Tyger! burning bright..." As children's book author Jane Yolen wrote, "
Adult books maintain lives, children's books change lives."  To all the Felicity Fotheringhams who open books to young readers (and tigers) and "change lives"...thank you."
Kirkus Reviews praised the work:  "Nice nourishment for the blossoming bookworm." Be sure to check out this activity guide and watch the trailer:

FYI:  All the review copies for this title have been sent.  Please check back and see the "comments" link to read what your colleagues have to say...