Sea Tiger – Victoria Turnbull

61qNH2bD2EL    Sea Tiger – Victoria Turnbull, Templar Books, (9780763679866), 2015

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre: Picture Book

What did you like about the book?  A beautifully illustrated story of friendship. The sea tiger is the best friend of a shy young merboy named Oscar. They have lots of undersea adventures including a ride on a sea-horse carousel or grabbing onto the tendrils of a jellyfish for “…a ride to the surface.” The sea tiger realizes that Oscar needs more. As he says, “I am Oscar’s only friend. Where I lead, Oscar follows. That’s why it’s up to me…to make anew friend…so that Oscar can too.” Luckily the sea tiger finds a sea-lion who happens to have a little mermaid girl for a friend. This is a sweet story and the lovely colored pencil illustrious are a perfect complement. The underwater world is full of wondrous details that bring the imaginative world to life. This is a wonderful debut.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No

To whom would you recommend this book? This is a perfect book for children who love imaginative tales especially of mermaids.

Who should buy this book? Public libraries

Where would you shelve it? Picture Books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? Yes

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review: 2/8/16

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A B C Dream – Kim Krans

51-LGw7piKL     A B C Dream – Kim Krans, Random House, (9780553539295), 2016

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre: Picture Book

What did you like about the book? In pen and ink illustrations with washes of watercolor, each letter of the alphabet is depicted through one to seven items beginning with the letter.   The letter “A” for instance has arrows, an apple, ants and an argyle-patterned letter “A.” The end pages have a listing of the items in the illustrations. This is a nice introduction to the alphabet that also serves as a game of identification. Children might immediately see the obvious, but will need to look deeper for some of the other words. For instance, “C “ is for chicken and cupcake, but also for crumbs. “E” is represented by an egg and the earth, with Europe front and center. Even adults will be surprised at some things they might miss: “L “has a lion and lamb, but the key also reveals the worlds “lying down” and “leaning.” An alphabet book that is far from simple.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No

To whom would you recommend this book? This is an alphabet book that can be enjoyed on many levels from the children just learning the abcs to older children and adults who will enjoy finding all the less obvious words.

Who should buy this book? Public libraries

Where would you shelve it? Picture Books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? Yes

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review: 2/8/16

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Disney Tsum Tsum Book of Haiku

91T7xSLQYpL  Disney Tsum Tsum Book of Haiku – Disney Pres, (9781484729250), 2015

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 2

Genre: Picture Book

What did you like about the book?   Tsum Tsums are little ball-shaped plush toys that can stack on top of one another. Each tsum stum character illustration is accompanied by a haiku. The book begins with a description of the haiku form, but most of the poems only serve to show how the toys can stack upon one another: “In a plush forest, Tsum Tsum Pooh and Piglet stand/ Stacked close, side by side.” or “Jessie at the top, Buzz sits tight in the middle, Woody down below.” Some of the haiku are a little more than just positional descriptions. Other haiku work better such as Minnie Mouse’s haiku which reads “Dressing for success/Or dressing just for yourself, All’s good with a bow.” The Cheshire Cat is given a nice haiku: “Wide grin, shining smile, It lingers once he is gone, Crescent moon of teeth.” Unfortunately the tsum tsum Cheshire Cat toy does not have a smile. While this will be enjoyed by children who love the Disney characters, it is an additional purchase at best.

Anything you didn’t like about it?  While some of the haiku poetry works well, many may find that the book is too closely tied to merchandise.

To whom would you recommend this book? This is one for Disney fans and especially those you collect the toy tsum tsums.

Who should buy this book? Large public libraries with a large demand for all things Disney.

Where would you shelve it? Picture Books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review:  2/8/16

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Adventures From the Land of Stories (The Mother Goose Diaries and Queen Red Riding Hood’s Guide to Royalty) – Chris Colfer

61NEgmZ0m0L   Adventures From the Land of Stories (The Mother Goose Diaries and Queen Red Riding Hood’s Guide to Royalty) – Chris Colfer, Hachette audio, (9781478960058), 2016

Format:  cd audiobook

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 3

Genre: Fantasy

What did you like about the book? This is light fair fantasizing about the lives of Mother Goose and Queen Red Riding Hood. The writing is fun and imaginative, retellings of classic tales.  An added bonus here is that the stories are read by the author!

To whom would you recommend this book? There are many other stories contained in the “Land of Stories” from which to choose and pair with these.

Who should buy this book? Public and elementary school libraries

Where would you shelve it? Juvenile fiction audiobooks

Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Katrina Yurenka, Moderator, Youth Services Book Review

Date of review: 2/9/2016.

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What the Dinosaurs Did Last Night: A Very Messy Adventure – Refe and Susan Tuma

51CyN0ViIQL    What the Dinosaurs Did Last Night: A Very Messy Adventure – Refe and Susan Tuma, Little, Brown and Company, (9780316335621), 2015

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre: Picture Book

What did you like about the book?    Children will love this tale, complete with photographic evidence, of the chaos that ensues when toy dinosaurs come to life at night. “It usually starts with a mess you can’t explain. You parents will think you did it. You might try to blame the dog. Bt it wasn’t the dog. It was DINOSAURS.” The dinosaurs make a mess with food in the fridge, shaving cream in the bathroom, and even graffiti on the walls. Children will find lots of humor in the photographs and parents might be inspired to create some photo tableaux of their own.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No

To whom would you recommend this book?  This is a perfect book for kids enamored of dinosaurs. It will also be enjoyed by kids who love the Toy Story movies and Elf on the Shelf. Parents might be inspired to follow the authors lead and participate in the annual Dinovember celebration with their own kids toys.

Who should buy this book? Public libraries

Where would you shelve it? Picture Books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review: 2/8/16

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Animals Work – Ted Lewin

71AKv07KNHL    Animals Work – Ted Lewin, Holiday House, (9780823434541), 2015

Format: Paperback

Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre: Easy Reader

What did you like about the book?   A very simple text explains the various ways that animals work. They may “pull”, “carry,” “lift,” or “herd.” Even a house cat has a job: “My cat keeps me company.” The simple text is perfect for very early readers. Each double page spread has a beautiful pencil and watercolor illustration of the animals at work and one line of text.   Part of the “I Like to Read” series, the text is bold and simple, making it a perfect choice for very early readers.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No

To whom would you recommend this book?     Hand this to very early readers who enjoy animals.

Who should buy this book? Public libraries, elementary school libraries

Where would you shelve it? Easy Readers

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review: 2/5/16

 

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Hiding Dinosaurs – Dan Moynihan

81FSF+6F56L      Hiding Dinosaurs – Dan Moynihan, Holiday House, (9780823431960), 2015

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1-5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre: Easy Reader

What did you like about the book?  At breakfast, a family finds that the carton of eggs is out of date.   Readers will notice that the carton in the illustration is marked “Dino eggs.” Soon the eggs hatch and the little boy tries to hide the baby dinosaurs, which include a triceratops, t-rex, pterodactyl, brontosaurus and stegosaurus. Mom and Dad discover the dinosaurs when they get so big that they break a hole through the roof of the house. All ends well, however as “Mom and Dad love dinosaurs too.” The simple text for beginning readers is complemented by the illustrations that tell most of the story. Readers will love the idea of having pet dinosaurs, especially as the last pages show them flying Mom to work, mowing the lawn for Dad, and giving rides to kids. Part of the “I Like to Read” series, the text is bold and simple, making it a perfect choice for very early readers.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No

To whom would you recommend this book?   This is one for early readers, especially if they love dinosaurs.

Who should buy this book? Public libraries, elementary school libraries

Where would you shelve it? Easy Readers

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review: 2/5/16

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