Saturday, February 14, 2009

Picture Book Saturday

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! I made sure to post all my choices for "love" related books last Saturday, giving you time to find them if you were interested in them, so this week is more random choices from my TBR list.

Quiet in the Garden, written and illustrated by Aliki, is a sweet story about a the great adventures kids can have in their own yards. The child in the story notices birds and insects he had never seen before and feels peaceful looking at the flowers and plants, all while it's nice and quiet outside.

Ohhh Aliki, such a wonderful author you are. I don't think I've ever been disappointed by a book written by her. This would be a great story for family sharing and activity time, as it includes instructions for making your own quiet garden. Get your kids involved in creating a quiet place in the backyard where they can explore their world!

Quiet in the Garden
Picture Book
February 2009

Nico & Lola is written by Meggan Hill, with photography by Susan M. Graunke. Based upon the theme of kindness, a boy and a dog explore each other, while the boy learns how to be kind.

Nico is super excited when his Aunt drops her cute dog, Lola, off for the weekend. His Aunt makes sure to ask if Nico would be "so kind" to take care of her little girl and though Nico thinks he can do it, he isn't quite sure what it means to be kind.

As he and Lola get to know each other, Lola teaches Nico different ways to be kind. She teaches him that being kind is smiling at a new person (or dog in this case). After running around the yard playing tag, Lola also teaches Nico that being kind includes showing concern for others, after Nico offered her a cold bowl of water.

The lessons go on and on in a simple manner, well integrated into the story. The photographs are not spectacular, but tell the story well enough, plus the dog and the boy are both pretty adorable. As kids and babies tend to enjoy looking at real photographs of other children, this would be a nice selection for home shelves, especially when trying to teach kindness.

Publishing date for Nico & Lola has been pushed back until June from it's original February publishing date, therefore I was not able to link to Amazon on this one. Go to for info.

Nico & Lola
Meggan Hill
Picture Book
Genuine Prints LLC
June 2009

Finally, a super giggle inducing choice for the week in Artichoke Boy, written and illustrated by Scott Mickelson. The eye-catching "artichoke green" color on the cover will certainly grab your attention and the obsession this boy and his family have with artichokes.

Told in humorous rhymes, we learn all about the boy that not only eats his artichokes, but wears them ALL over his body. In fact, a lot of this boy's body IS an artichoke, as is his bed, his toothbrush, and his fish!

Lots of laughs about a topic we don't typically see in children's books. I think this would be awesome for a story time read aloud. Pair it with a vegetable craft! Have your kids think of their favorite vegetable and using magazine cutouts or drawings, make themselves in that veggie.

Artichoke Boy
Scott Mickelson
Picture Book
Boyds Mills Press
February 2009

To learn more or to purchase, click on any of the book covers to link to Amazon.

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