Saturday, September 18, 2010

Picture Book Saturday

I'm getting this to you a bit late this week, but Picture Book Saturday is here! I swear, I am totally off my blogging game this week. With any hope, next week will be much better...


In Front of My House by Marianne Dubuc

Such a simple idea, both in text and illustrations for this pint-sized book, but the simplicity is done SO well. Readers are given a tour of a house, beginning with a front yard, a rosebush, and a window, and moving into the narrator's room, a book of stories, what's under the bed, etc. Again, very simple, but a cute and fun premise. 

The illustrations were adorable, done with simple colored pencil drawings (or so it appeared) and the text was sparse on the page, often only one or two words. I was impressed with the wide range of children this could appeal to, starting with those just coming out of the board book stage OR those just beginning to read on their own. It's presented as a picture, so it doesn't look "babyish," but it has less words than some board books. 

A great book in a small package!

In Front of My House 
Marianne Dubuc
120 pages
Picture Book
Kids Can Press
September 2010
Review copy provided by publisher

Betsy Red Hoodie by Gail Carson Levine and illustrator Scott Nash

A hilarious fairy tale retelling by one of the best fantasy writers out there! Betsy Red Hoodie is taking cupcakes to Grandma for the first time by herself and brings along her best friend Zimmo (who happens to be a wolf), even though she knows that wolves aren't good for grandmas. 

As they get closer and closer to Grandma's house, Betsy feels she just may have made a terrible mistake in letting Zimmo come along and realizes that she must save her Grandma! Her sheep that came along for the trip as well keep distracting her, making it very difficult for Betsy to get to her destination and allow for Zimmo to run ahead...bad news for Grandma? Or a surprise for Betsy?

The illustrations are fun and interesting, especially the expressions on the different sheep faces. The little speech bubbles on several pages added the perfect amount of humor and the ending of the story was unexpected and a lot of fun. 

Cute for a read aloud, especially for those fans of fairy tales!

Betsy Red Hoodie
Gail Carson Levine
40 pages
Picture Book
September 2010
Review copy provided by publisher

Ruth and the Green Book by Calvin Alexander Ramsey and illustrator Floyd Cooper

This one is a definitely for your older kids, just due to the concept being a bit above the little ones' heads.

Ruth and her family are taking a trip in their new car, all the way to Alabama and she couldn't be more excited! It's 1952 and unfortunately, Ruth quickly learns that not all people are accepting of blacks in their restaurants or their hotels and often they have to search for a different place to eat or sleep for the night. 

A friendly gas station attendant finally shows Ruth's family The Green Book, a collection of places that would welcome black travelers. With the new book and some newfound friends, Ruth and her parents were able to safely make their trip all the way from Chicago to Alabama. 

The story is fiction, but The Green Book is definitely real! I had never heard of the book before, but I can imagine it was a huge blessings to black families traveling in those days. The last page of the book shares more information on how The Green Book got started and just what it include. 

A nicely done story with great information on a lesser-known topic.

Ruth and the Green Book
Calvin Alexander Ramsey
32 pages
Picture Book
Carolrhoda Books
August 2010
Review copy provided by publisher

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