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Picture Books June 2014
"There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm."
~ Willa Cather (1873-1947), American author, The Song of the Lark
New and Recently Released!
Gravity - by Jason Chin
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 04/29/2014
Share Gravity ISBN-13: 9781596437173
ISBN-10: 1596437170
Through bold, attention-grabbing illustrations and easy-to-understand language, this book introduces the concept of gravity by showing what life would be like without it. A boy watches as his toy astronaut floats off into space -- and then the boy grabs onto a rock as he, too, begins to float away! Though the boy doesn't get his toy back, kids will relish the intriguing visual details and clever conclusion of this fascinating read. Despite an informational afterword, Gravity isn't strictly scientific (for greater accuracy, try Franklyn Branley's Gravity Is a Mystery), but its stunning artwork and innovative style is sure to stir up curiosity in young readers.
Following Papa's Song - by Gianna Marino
Publisher: Penguin Group USA
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 04/03/2014
Share Following Papa ISBN-13: 9780670013159
ISBN-10: 0670013153
Little Blue the humpback whale has a million questions for his Papa about their first migration together. What will they see? How will they know where to go? And -- scariest of all -- what will happen if Little Blue gets lost? Papa reassures Little Blue that all he needs to do is listen for Papa's song, and he'll never lose his way. Vibrant washes of aquatic colors illuminate the mixed-media illustrations, which depict not only the vast depths of the ocean, but also the fathomless love between father and child. For another comforting parent-child whale tale, check out Breathe by Scott Magoon.
Rules of Summer - by Shaun Tan
Publisher: Scholastic
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 04/29/2014
Share Rules of Summer ISBN-13: 9780545639125
ISBN-10: 0545639123
Older picture book readers who appreciate the strange and surreal tone of Chris Van Allsburg's The Mysteries of Harris Burdick will be spellbound by this unusual story from the author of The Arrival. In Rules of Summer, an older brother teaches his younger brother the rules of survival as they navigate a beautifully bizarre version of suburbia filled with baseball-playing robots, giant rabbits, glowing gardens, and more. Shaun Tan's "evocative, enthralling and absolutely astounding artwork" (Kirkus Reviews) inspires wonder, invites repeat readings, and offers a tantalizing jumping-off point for kids to make imaginative leaps of their own.
Bad Bye, Good Bye - by Deborah Underwood; illustrated by Jonathan Bean
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 04/01/2014
Share Bad Bye, Good Bye ISBN-13: 9780547928524
ISBN-10: 0547928521
Gloomy skies mirror the miserable mood of a little boy as his family prepares to move to a new town. A farewell wave to the neighbors feels more like "bad bye" than good bye. But both the weather and the boy's spirits brighten as the family reaches their new home, and the boy sees the potential of a "new town, new park, new street, new bark" -- not to mention a new friend who warrants a "good bye" at the end of the day. Realistically portraying the emotional challenges of moving, this expressive book in verse may soothe the worries of children facing a big change.
Found - by Salina Yoon
Publisher: Walker & Company
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 04/01/2014
Share Found ISBN-13: 9780802735607
ISBN-10: 0802735606
When Bear discovers a lost toy bunny in the forest, he falls in love at first sight. Though Bear longs to keep the bunny all to himself, he thoughtfully posts "found" posters in an effort to find the bunny's owner. At first, no one responds, but then Moose recognizes his dear, lost bunny, Floppy. Bear has found Floppy's owner…but can he let the beloved bunny go? Without becoming preachy or sentimental, Bear's honest, childlike reactions drive home the importance of doing the right thing. This gentle tone, combined with the simple text and bright, uncluttered illustrations, makes Found a perfect pick for preschoolers.
Wild Weather
Flora's Very Windy Day - by Jeanne Birdsall; illustrated by Matt Phelan
Publisher: Clarion Books
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 08/23/2010
Share Flora ISBN-13: 9780618986767
ISBN-10: 0618986766
When Mom orders Flora and her pesky little brother Crispin outside on a blustery day, Flora half hopes that Crispin will blow away in the strong wind. But when does just that, Flora reluctantly kicks off her heavy-duty red boots to sail away after him. While brother and sister are airborne, denizens of the air (a bird, a cloud, a rainbow, and more) offer to take Crispin off Flora's hands...but she decides, after all, to keep him, and the wind blows them both back home. Swooping artwork illustrates this magical yet not-too-sweet story that splendidly blends the everyday with the fantastic and rings "emotionally true from cover to cover" (Kirkus Reviews).
One Hot Summer Day - by Nina Crews
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 05/01/1995
Share One Hot Summer Day ISBN-13: 9780688133931
ISBN-10: 0688133932
Children who enjoy realistic stories will find lots to love in this photo-illustrated, slice-of-life book about a hot day in the city. The weather outside is sweltering, and a young girl in braids and purple overalls is looking for something to do. The metal swings are scorching -- eating two grape popsicles in a row provides a cooler challenge. The sidewalk isn't quite hot enough to cook an egg -- but it makes a great canvas for chalk drawings and shadow games. Finally, a rainstorm sweeps in to break the heat wave, providing a refreshing close to this exuberant urban romp.
Thunderstorm - by Arthur Geisert
Publisher: Enchanted Lion Books
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 04/30/2013
Share Thunderstorm ISBN-13: 9781592701339
ISBN-10: 1592701337
As this nearly-wordless book opens, storm clouds gather over a farm community, and people scramble to bring in the hay and get to safety. The meticulously etched illustrations (which include cutaway views of buildings and underground burrows) draw readers into the growing tension as the storm builds and finally bursts, bringing with it sheets of rain, a destructive funnel cloud, and a debris-choked flash flood. It's thrilling, dramatic, and a bit scary, but eventually the storm clears, and everyone pitches in to repair the damage. Kids who are transfixed by the absorbing, hyper-detailed artwork in Thunderstorm should also pick up David Wiesner's Hurricane and Peter Spier's Rain.
Tsunami! - by Kimiko Kajikawa; illustrated by Ed Young
Publisher: Philomel Books
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 02/05/2009
Share Tsunami! ISBN-13: 9780399250064
ISBN-10: 0399250069
Wealthy, wise Ojiisan is an old rice farmer who lives high on a mountain above a seaside Japanese village. When his family goes to celebrate the rice harvest with the rest of the villagers, Ojiisan, who feels that something isn't right, stays behind. An earthquake strikes, and from his vantage point far above the beach, the old man sees the sea "running away from the land." Knowing that he must act quickly to save his people from the coming tsunami, Ojiisan sets his own rice fields ablaze in order to draw the villagers away from the beach. Tsunami's mixed-media collage illustrations are "visually powerful and dramatic" (Kirkus Reviews), and its story delivers an equally powerful message.
Hurricane! - by Jonathan London; illustrated by Henri Sorensen
Publisher: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard
Check Library Catalog Pub Date: 08/01/1998
Share Hurricane! ISBN-13: 9780688129774
ISBN-10: 0688129773
Off the sunny coast of Puerto Rico, two brothers spend a happy afternoon snorkeling until they notice that the waves have grown stronger, and the sky has turned an alarming shade of purple -- signs of a hurricane on the way. They rush home, and their family flees to a community shelter, where they huddle with their neighbors as the wind and waves pummel the land before finally subsiding. With authentic storytelling and dynamic, colorful paintings, Hurricane! captures the "power, danger, and excitement" (School Library Journal) of a storm as seen through the eyes of a child.
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