Monthly Archives: February 2012

Henry’s Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad

All of the angst of a child born into slavery and yearning for freedom is poured into Kadir Nelson‘s artwork of Henry, a real person who mailed himself to freedom in a wooden crate. Ellen Levine‘s story weaves fact and … Continue reading

Posted in Biography, Love that art, Picture books | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

When Sheep Cannot Sleep: The Counting Book

I’m currently taking a graduate class on picture books, and we are repeatedly studying this book by Satoshi Kitamura, coming back to it over and over and over again for several elements of picture book design. So I thought I’d … Continue reading

Posted in Love that art, Picture books | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

On the Farm

A book of short poems themed around the farm, opening with a rooster crowing and ending with the rabbit listening, is just what we need for early spring. Holly Meade‘s woodcuts lend strong lines to each poem, emphasizing the animal characters … Continue reading


Posted in Books with science links, Love that art, Picture books, Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Red Sled

Oh, to have enough snow to go sledding! In lieu of real snow, Lita Judge‘s Red Sled  will do. During the day, it’s a child’s red sled, but at night, creatures of the forest take it for a whirl. Shown entirely … Continue reading

Posted in Picture books, Word choice | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Cruisers

While set in the present day, Walter Dean Myers‘ The Cruisers takes us back to the mindset of the Civil War era through eighth grade students. Zander and his friends, the Cruisers, have to prove their potential at Da Vinci Academy, a … Continue reading

Posted in Character-driven, Children's novels, Series, social issues, strong characters, Voice | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Steadfast Tin Soldier

A classic love story to share with children, Rachel Isadora‘s The Steadfast Tin Soldier, is retold and illustrated beautifully. Even though there wasn’t enough tin to finish his leg, the soldier stands strong through all the cruel twists and turns in … Continue reading

Posted in Picture books | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Small As An Elephant

Jack and his mom are camping in Acadia National Park–at least that’s what he thought they were doing. Except when he wakes up the next day, she’s gone. She doesn’t answer her cell phone and the local bartender says he … Continue reading

Posted in Books with social studies links, Children's novels, social issues | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The Mysterious Benedict Society

It’s hard to peg this book because it’s a little of so many good things: a little mystery, a little adventure, and a little fantasy. The Mysterious Benedict Society is Trenton Lee Stewart’s first in a series starring Reynie, Sticky, Kate, … Continue reading

Posted in Children's novels, strong characters | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

All Cats Have Asperger Syndrome

Kathy Hoopman has created a touching book with adorable photographs of cats and text that relates to Asperger Syndrome. This book illuminates similarities between the two: “He likes to be near those he loves, but doesn’t want them to hold him, preferring … Continue reading

Posted in Nonfiction | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment