Monday, June 18, 2018

Farm Babies

Farm Babies. H.A. Rey. 2017. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 24 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence:
Cluck, cluck, cluck!
Calls Mother Hen.
Help count her chicks
From one to ten.

Premise/plot: Farm Babies is a lift-the-flap book. It is neither a board book or a picture book--not properly. (The pages are thick but not board-book thick.) It is adapted from H.A. Rey's Where's My Baby?

Each spread shows a family. The rhyme tells a tiny bit about the family. Many are animal families, but not all.
Many piglets
Has Mother Pig.
Now they are little.
Soon they'll be big.
My thoughts: I liked this one!  I admit I am a bit partial to farm books for little ones!

Reading is a shared experience, especially with books like this one. Parents should treasure each and every moment of it. Lift-the-flap books are a great way for parents and little ones to interact with each other and with the book in hand.

Text: 3 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 6 out of 10

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Friday, June 15, 2018

Whose House?

Whose House? H.A. Rey. 2017. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 24 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence:
Here in this house
Lives something you know
That likes to go
And go and go!
Premise/plot: Whose House? is a lift-the-flap book. It isn't a proper board book or a proper picture book. It's an in-between book for parents to share with their curious little ones. (It is adapted from H.A. Rey's Anybody at Home?)

Each spread reveals another type of home. There is a rhyme asking little ones to guess whose home it is. The flap reveals the answer, of course. The clues are not to be found in the text--for the most part--but in the illustrations. (There are definite exceptions!)

My thoughts: Reading is a shared experience, especially with books like this one. Parents should treasure each and every moment of it. Lift-the-flap books are a great way for parents and little ones to interact with each other and with the book in hand.

Text: 3 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 6 out of 10


© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Monkey Not Ready For Bedtime

Monkey: Not Ready for Bedtime. Marc Brown. 2017. Random House. 32 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: "It's time for bed, Monkey! Do you have your pj's on?" "Yes." "Did you brush your teeth?" "Yes." "Where is Mr. Fuzzy?" "Mr. Fuzzy is on be bed." But Monkey couldn't fall asleep.

Premise/plot: Night after night Monkey has trouble falling asleep. Can Monkey's big brother help his little brother out?

My thoughts: Monkey is the star of Marc Brown's new series. I believe this is the third book in the series. Other books include Monkey Not Ready for Baby and Monkey Not Ready for Kindergarten.

It was an okay book for me. I don't actively dislike Monkey and his family. It's more of a lack of feeling. Perhaps a lack of feeling might be called boredom. But I don't know that I care even enough to be bored by Monkey.

Since he's the star of a series, it would be nice if I could feel something toward him.

Text: 3 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 6 out of 10

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

The Antlered Ship

The Antlered Ship. Dashka Slater. Illustrated by Eric and Terry Fan. 2017. Simon & Schuster. 32 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: The day the antlered ship arrived, Marco wondered about the wide world. He had so many questions. Why do some songs make you happy and others make you sad? Why don't trees ever talk? How deep does the sun go when it sinks into the sea?

Premise/plot: Marco is the fox-hero of The Antlered Ship. The book celebrates marveling or curiosity. Marco sets out with other animals on a quest for answers to his questions. All have their own individual reason for setting sail and heading off into the unknown. Marco hopes to find other foxes like him--philosophically inclined foxes that contemplate the meaning of the universe. The adventure has ups and downs--moments when Marco--and the others--question why they set sail in the first place. But Marco finds he LOVES the journey.

My thoughts: I like this one. I do like Marco. I appreciate his curiosity and his longing to find kindred spirits. I have never been inclined to go adventure-seeking myself. Curiosity is worth celebrating, it can lead you places for sure. While Marco was drawn to the sea, I'm drawn to libraries.

If you enjoy animal fantasy consider picking this one up!

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

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Ocean Meets Sky

Ocean Meets Sky. Terry and Eric Fan. 2018. Simon & Schuster. 48 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Finn lived by the sea, and the sea lived by him. "It's a good day for sailing," his grandfather would have said.

Premise/plot: On what would have been his grandfather's ninetieth birthday, a young boy dreams whimsically about the ocean meeting the sky. His grandfather was always telling stories about a magical place where the ocean met the sky.

My thoughts: If you love, love, love whimsical, fantastical books then Ocean Meets Sky might be a great fit for you and your little ones. If you prefer less whimsy and more reality, then maybe not so much. Most of this one is a boy's dream-journey to the place where the ocean meets the sky. If you're willing to dream with Finn, then you might enjoy the journey and be mesmerized by the detailed illustrations.

Ocean Meets Sky is not my kind of book, but it may be your kind of book. I wouldn't be surprised if it got some award love at some point for its illustrations.

Text: 3 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 6 out of 10


© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Monday, June 11, 2018

Cat Wishes

Cat Wishes. Calista Brill. Illustrated by Kenard Pak. 2018. [July] HMH. 40 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Once in the windy wood, there was a hungry Cat.

Premise/plot: Cat Wishes reads like a fairy tale. A cat shows mercy to an animal--a snake of all things!--and receives three wishes in return. What will she wish for...and will her wishes come true?!

My thoughts: I enjoyed this one! It was a lovely, sweet story. Cat may be skeptical that wishes are real, but readers probably won't be.

Text: 4 out of 5
Illustrations: 4 out of 5
Total: 8 out of 10

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

Friday, June 8, 2018

Board book: I'm a Mail Carrier

Tinyville Town: I'm A Mail Carrier. Brian Biggs. 2018. Abrams. 22 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Whatever the weather, I have a job to do. I get things where they're supposed to go.

Premise/plot: I'm a Mail Carrier is one of the books in Brian Biggs'  Tinyville Town series. The series includes picture and board books. Other books in the series include Tinyville Town: Gets To Work!, Tinyville Town: I'm a Librarian, Tinyville Town: I'm a Firefighter, Tinyville Town: I'm a Veterinarian, Tinyville Town: I'm a Police Officer, Tinyville Town: Time for School.

This one is a board book. It introduces little ones to the job of mail carrier, obviously. She is a hard worker! Perhaps because she lives in Tinyville Town, she does everything herself.

My thoughts: I liked this one. I did. My absolute favorite in the series is I'm a Librarian. But this one finds a way to work books into it as well! The Mail Carrier carries packages, and one of those packages is a book.

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers