Saturday, December 27, 2008

Picture Book Saturday: All About Animals!

Though I'm sure your kids received lots of picture books for Christmas and Hanukkah, I have a few more this week that I've enjoyed and hope you will find enjoyable as well! I'm going on a pseudo-safari this week, bringing you a book about a tiger, one about a giraffe, and another about a gorilla. Enjoy!

Auntie Tiger, written by the AMAZING Laurence Yep and illustrated by Insu Lee reads like a fairy tale. Yep has created a Chinese adaptation of the much loved children's tale, Little Red Riding Hood, replacing the feared wolf with "Auntie Tiger." Done in beautifully bright and tropical illustrations, with giggle-worthy text, two sisters filled with rivalry try to protect each other against the Tiger claiming to be their "Auntie."

A reader really can't go wrong when picking up a Laurence Yep book, though this one is much lighter and more humorous than most of his picture books. Auntie Tiger would be great for a unit on multi-cultural fairy tales or just to read aloud.

Now, giraffes are one of my absolute favorite animals, so I had to include a giraffe selection in our safari this week! Chee-Lin: A Giraffe's Journey, written and illustrated by James Runford is probably not going to entertain your smaller children, as it's a bit long and word heavy, but it may be a great choice for a couple of nights worth of bedtime reading. Told in one-page chapters, the reader learns of what giraffes meant to the Chinese people, as well as Tweega the giraffe's personal adventure from his home in Africa, all the way to China.

A great history lesson filled with beautiful illustrations, Chee-Lin is based on a painting created in 1414. Chinese exploration is the main topic here, but for children, the story of an adorable giraffe just wanting to be free will be the real standout.

Finally, we have a heartwarming and guaranteed smile story in Little Beauty, written and illustrated by Anthony Browne. Based on the true story of a gorilla at the San Diego Zoo that had learned how to sign, our main character is indeed a huge gorilla. He had everything he ever wanted after learning to sign his wants and needs, except one thing...he wanted a friend. The zoo keepers brought him a kitten that he named "Beauty."

The gorilla and kitten fill this story with love and sweetness. Your kids (and you) are just going to feel happy after reading this one, making it truly wonderful for an anytime read. Browne's illustrations are pretty great too...overall this one definitely gets two thumbs up!

If you're interested in learning more about any of these, or to purchase, click on any of the book covers to link to Amazon.


rosen said...

Hi Amanda, Thanks. These all look great! I want to wish you lots of happiness in 2009.

Corey Schwartz said...

That last post was from me. I'm visiting family, so I wasn't logged in properly. I really hope this coming year brings joy for you and your husband!

Amanda said...

Thanks so much, Corey! We certainly do need a good 2009. I have never before been so happy to see a year end!

Z-Kids said...

All three of these look wonderful! I'll keep my eyes open for them...