Until now, Zoey had no idea she could see magical creatures or that her scientist mother could see them too; not only this, the barn in their backyard is where these creatures come to when they need a helping hand. Zoey and Sassafras are witty, critical thinkers who encourage curiosity, compassion and problem-solving, spreading wonder for the natural and scientific worlds right from their own backyard.
Dav Pilkey is at it again in Dog Man, a comic written by his fictional characters George and Harold. Dog Man is a police officer with the head of a dog who fights crime and gets dog hair all over the chief’s couch. The mom in me cringes at the potty humor that was characteristic of the Captain Underpants series, but my kids have read this book fifteen times and vouch that it is hysterical and awesome. Pilkey is a master at creating books that get kids excited about reading.
“Right book for the right person for the right day”. So goes the motto of Book Uncle, a retired teacher in India who daily offers free books from his stand to the community. Young Yasmin can’t get enough and aspires to read a book a day, so when a governmental notice forces Book Uncle to leave his corner Yasmin decides to do something. Yasmin’s introduction to community activism, local elections and organizing is relevant and endearing, and will leave our youngest book lovers with a sense of how they, too, can make a difference.
A little white dog (Lucy) roams the streets, always in search of food and shelter, revisiting her former life only in dreams. A little girl (Eleanor) notices the dog and dreams of befriending her. The girl’s father (Sam) juggles brilliantly at home, but cannot get past his stage fright to complete a public performance. Told in four ‘acts’, the story unfolds gracefully and ends with all parties getting their fondest wish in a perfect storm of magic and memory.
Brothers Louie and Ralph Ratso hear from their dad Big Lou that there are two types of people in the world, the toughies and the softies. They want to be toughies like their dad, so they spend their time trying to impress him-taking someone’s hat, making a gross sandwich for the new girl at school, and soaping up the window of the mean lady next door. But all of their tough moves end up unexpectedly helping the people involved, and the brothers find that being kind and helpful isn’t just for the softies.
Being a superstar isn’t as easy as it seems! Wanda loves to take selfies and stay up on the latest celebrity gossip, but when her favorite canine companion, Wilbur, suddenly becomes the next big thing, Wanda doesn’t know what to do! That’s when Wanda sets off on a zany adventure to win Wilbur back, wonderfully rendered by Eleanor Davis and Drew Weing. Although the story often verges on silliness, Davis and Weing never lose the emotional core of the story about a girl and her best friend. A great comic to inspire beginning readers in any family!
This new series follows four friends on imaginative outings in their neighborhood. Whether preparing robotic dinosaurs for a block party or finding their parents’ old tent in the garage, the Bradford Street Buddies try to find the best in the situation. The tension and anticipation builds in each story through age appropriate conflict with whimsical details that mirror a child’s sense of wonder. A highly enjoyable series for beginning readers!
This is a story of an unlikely friendship that develops between a tiny dog who guards the courtyard of her apartment building and a large cat-abouttown with no fixed abode. They both live in Paris, but have completely different experiences. Diva never ventures out of her courtyard and is perpetually plagued by the danger of FEET. She is an expert at yelping and running into her apartment for safety. Flea is the neighborhood ‘flaneur’ whose occupation is to wander Paris and see what there is to see while deftly avoiding BROOMS. How their friendship evolves is a charming tale of bravery and trust. Just ‘take a little step and see how it feels’.
Do you like soccer? Kitties? Hanging out with your best friend and writing in your diary? If so, you’ll love Lola Levine! Sometimes the girls in her second grade class tease her about her name, or the fact that her best friend is a boy, but Lola doesn’t let that bother her. She just paints like her artist dad, writes like her journalist mom, and plays soccer like the strong and competitive girl she is. One day during a soccer game at recess she’s a little too competitive and hurts her classmate Juan, causing most of the class to start calling her Mean Lola Levine. How can Lola make everyone see that it was just an accident and get back to recess as usual? This first book in a forthcoming series introduces a character with a ton of personality and heart; my third-grader loved it!
Each Elephant and Piggie book features the exasperated Gerald and the happy-go-lucky Piggie engaged in some minor conflict or scheme. If you’re new to the series, start with There is a Bird on Your Head! It features the rhythms and hilariously unexpected plot twists that make this series a hit with beginning readers.
Leroy Ninker dreams of being a real cowboy. He’s got the lasso, the boots and the yippie-i-oh attitude, but he’s all hat with no horse. Fortunately, he is given a lead on a horse for sale and sets out to make his dream a reality. Here’s the reality of Maybelline: she’s a horse who loves compliments (the more flowery and poetical, the better); she’s a horse who eats a lot of grub (they all do, trust me); and she’s a horse who can’t stand to be left all alone (this is where the trouble starts). A cowboy’s loyalty, a horse’s trust and the power of beautiful words. Yippie-i-oh!
Isabel is the best bunjitsu artist in her school. But as she is challenged to enter a locked classroom (go through an open window!), or defeat an angry wave (float with it!), Isabel’s smart thinking proves to be even more essential than her strong kicking. With its brief, humor-filled chapters and action-packed illustrations, this book is sure to delight aspiring readers and bunjitsu masters alike!
Brother and sister mice Benny and Penny are back in an all new graphic adventure! When they become lost while searching for Benny's hat in the woods, they'll have to overcome both their fears and their differences in order to find their way home. Relatable characters and easy-to-grasp text make this a great book for any young reader, especially those with a bossy older brother or whiny little sister!
Wolf and dog are cousins. Dog has a basket and a boss; he is tame. Wolf from the forest bites at will; he is wild. Each brings his best wordplay to the game. Not for the faint-hearted, nothing here is mild. It's on, a down and dirty duel of canine conniving and banter. Vibrant illustrations chock full of movement match this story's lively energy. Now dears, don't flee for fear of a flea in the ear...er, fur. It's a howl!
For kids who love lots of stuff going on, this is a perfect book. The creative Klise sisters have begun a new series infused with lots of fun pictures, puzzles, wordplay, jokes, and characters. Beloved owner of Sir Sidney’s Circus needs a break and turns over “the business” to one questionable Barnabas Brambles, graduate of the University of Piccadilly Circus. Brambles is given control of the circus for one week and with dollar signs in his eyes, makes changes that may or may not be in the best interests of everyone involved. A fun start to a new series!
Afraid of the school year, that you might not make the grade? Billy has a bump on the head, more than a few worries, but most importantly, a super star cast of family, a teacher and friends. There's no better author to take us with grace and humor into a seven-year-old mind. Hooray for this story, peppered with art in perfect Henkes style. You won't want to put the book down, until you come to its wholly satisfying end. Is it time for a big break? This may be the year of Billy Miller and you, kid!