Friday, November 16, 2018

Tough Cookie: A Christmas Story

Tough Cookie: A Christmas Story. Edward Hemingway. 2018. Holt. 40 pages. [Source: Library]

 First sentence: Once upon a time, while Fox was visiting Christmastown, in the Land of Holiday Treats...a little cookie--still warm from the bakery oven--burst out the front door and shouted, "I'm a sweet cookie!"

Premise/plot: Sugar Cookie Man thinks he should be both sweet and fast...but he isn't. Can he learn to be okay with that? Sugar Cookie Man may not realize his purpose, but he does have one.

My thoughts: I liked this one. I have always enjoyed the Gingerbread Man story. This playfully touches on that story...but only a little. It stars a FOX and a COOKIE. The cookie does boast and the fox does give chase. Sugar Cookie Man learns by trial and error that he was baked with a specific purpose in mind. He's not for eating...but for hanging as an ornament on a tree. (If he was an EATING cookie the book would be quite short since the Fox would have gobbled him up by page two or three.)

Text: 4 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 7 out of 10

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Peeps at School

Peeps at School. Andrea Posner-Sanchez. Illustrated by Daniela Massironi. 2018. Random House. 24 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Who is ready for school? The Peeps chicks are!

Premise/plot: This is an early reader starring PEEPS at school. The text is super-simple. The colors are just as bright and bold as the candy.

My thoughts: I am not a fan of the candy, but I am a fan of the toys. This early reader is cute. It may not have much substance in the grand scheme of things--but it's an enjoyable treat. If you have a little one who loves PEEPS this one may be worth your time.

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Winter is Here

Winter Is Here. Kevin Henkes. Illustrated by Laura Dronzek. 2018. 40 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: Winter is here. It's everywhere. It's falling from the sky and sitting on the houses and dripping from the roofs and sticking to the trees in clumps and curls.

Premise/plot: Kevin Henkes' newest book is a poetic description of the winter season.
Winter comes without a sound...
and it comes with many.
The wind howls in every language
and the windows rattle. 
My thoughts: I enjoyed this one. I liked the text very much. But I loved, loved, loved the illustrations.

Text: 4 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Total: 9 out of 10


© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Board book: Bow-Wow 12 Months Running

Bow-Wow 12 Months Running. Mark Newgarden. Illustrated by Megan Montague Cash. 2009. 18 pages. [Source: Library]

 First sentence: January. February. March. April. May. June.

Premise/plot: Bow-Wow stars in this board book doubling as a concept book. The text is simply the twelve months of the years. The illustrations show Bow-Wow in each month.

My thoughts: Quite a lot is communicated about the months of the year through the illustrations. The book--like the others in the series--is simple yet more often than not effective. The illustrations are bright, bold, and expressive.

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Woof and Quack in Winter

Woof and Quack in Winter (Green Light Readers Level 1) Jamie Swenson. Illustrated by Ryan Sias. 2017. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 37 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Woof, I am not flying south this year. But ducks always fly south, Quack. I want to stay with you in winter. This duck is staying put.

Premise/plot:  Woof and Quack are an unusual duo. Woof is a dog that doesn't like to play fetch; Quack is a duck that doesn't fly south in the winter. This book is about what these two friends do in the winter.

My thoughts: I liked this one. It was silly just like the first book in this early reader series. (The first book is Meet Woof and Quack.) The dialogue between these two is fun.


© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Meet Woof & Quack

Meet Woof and Quack (Green Light Readers Level 1) Jamie Swenson. Illustrated by Ryan Sias. 2017. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 37 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Would you like to play a game, Woof? Yes. What shall we play, Quack?

Premise/plot: Quack wants to play fetch with his friend Woof. But Woof is a dog who does NOT like to play fetch. Fortunately, Woof is a dog who likes to throw. So the two do get to play fetch together. What makes this one silly is WHAT is being thrown.

My thoughts: This one is super-silly. Woof and Quack are a silly duo that your little one may love to meet. I enjoyed the text. I didn't quite love, love, love the illustrations. But overall I'd recommend this one.  

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Where's Ellie? A Hide and Seek (Board) Book

Board book: Where's Ellie? A Hide and Seek Book. Salina Yoon. 2012. Random House. 18 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Where is Ellie hiding? Is she behind the plant? No, that's a teapot!

Premise/plot: Ellie (the elephant) is hiding. Can little ones find out where she's hiding in this super adorable board book by Salina Yoon?

My thoughts: I love that the elephant's ear and trunk are tactilely pleasing. There are many reasons why I love this one actually. I love, love, love elephants. Always have, always will. I don't think I'll ever outgrow my desire to have a pet elephant. Hide-and-seek books--with or without flaps--can be great fun to read with little ones. This one does not have flaps. A turn of the page reveals the surprise--was that Ellie? or was it something else? The front cover--and almost all of the pages--do have a cut-out. This cut-out is vital to the game of hide-and-seek. And I think it's also great for little grasping hands.

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers