Currently viewing the category: "Personification"

Duck and Hippo in the Rainstorm
Author: Jonathan London; Illustrator: Andrew Joyner
Published: March 1, 2017 by Two Lions

GoodReads Summary: Get ready for a rainy-day adventure with Duck and Hippo!

Duck and Hippo may be completely different, but they are best friends. When playful Duck invites careful Hippo to go for a walk in the rain, they have trouble sharing Duck’s umbrella. But Duck and Hippo won’t let that stop them. Soon they are puddle-jumping and sailing down the river! Until…WHOOOSH! A terrible wind sends the umbrella flying up, up, up into the air, with one friend holding on. What will Duck and Hippo do now? Jonathan London’s charming text and Andrew Joyner’s delightful art bring to life two lovable friends in this fun new series.

Our Review: We are huge fans of the Elephant and Piggie series and Frog and Toad series. They are staples in our households, so when we read these books, we were truly delighted! Duck and Hippo show readers that opposites attract—and they make for a wonderfully fun adventure. Ricki read this book with her three-year-old, and he was giggling hysterically at the drawings. It’s a winner.

The charming story will capture readers from beginning to end, and the language is written in a way that will be very helpful for beginning readers. It takes a lot of skill for an author to write text that is humorous and engaging yet also helpful for beginning readers to master language. London does this perfectly.We will be hanging on to these books tightly as we wait for our sons to be a bit older to learn to read. We recommend you get your hands on this book because it will surely be a popular series in classrooms.

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: We love the concept of opposites attracting. Students might begin by considering other examples of characters in literature who have been paired together. They might form small groups and design their own story of two very opposite characters who might attract. We’d love to be in a classroom on a day that students were sharing these stories!

There’s more fun with Duck and Hippo in the free downloadable activity sheets: https://www.andrewjoyner.com.au/activities/

Discussion Questions: How are Duck and Hippo different? How are they similar? How does that make for a great adventure?; Why do you think the author chose to have Duck and Hippo in a rainstorm? Why does this make for a fun read?

Flagged Passage: 

Read This If You Loved: Elephant and Piggie series by Mo Willems; The Frog and Toad series by Arnold Lobel; Pug Meets Pig by Sue Lowell Gallion

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Giveaway!
Two Lions is offering a copy of Duck and Hippo to one lucky winner (U.S. addresses).
About the Author and Illustrator:
Jonathan London is the author of more than one hundred children’s books, including the bestselling Froggy series, illustrated by Frank Remkiewicz. Many of his books explore nature, among them Flamingo Sunset, illustrated by Kristina Rodanas, and Little Penguin: The Emperor of Antarctica, illustrated by Julie Olson. He is currently writing a middle-grade series, which started with Desolation Canyon, illustrated by his son Sean London. Jonathan lives in Graton, California. Learn more online at www.jonathan-london.net.
 
Andrew Joyner is an illustrator, author, and cartoonist based in South Australia. He has illustrated a number of picture books, and he wrote and illustrated a chapter book series about a warthog named Boris. He has also illustrated for newspapers and magazines, including the Wall Street Journal, Reader’s Digest, and Rolling Stone magazine, among others. Learn more online at www.andrewjoyner.com.au.

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**Thank you to Barbara at Blue Slip for providing copies for review!**

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Mr. Fuzzbuster Knows He’s the Favorite
Author: Stacy McAnulty; Illustrator: Edward Hemingway
Published: February 7, 2017 by Two Lions

GoodReads Summary: Mr. Fuzzbuster knew he was Lily’s favorite. They did everything together. Naps. Story time. Walks. And more naps. But now four more animals lived in the house.…

To prove he’s still Lily’s favorite, Mr. Fuzzbuster will have to ask her, but will her answer surprise him? This funny, heartwarming story is for every child who has ever wondered if there’s a favorite in the house.

Ricki’s Review: This was a very fun book to read aloud to my son. It reminded me of my childhood—my siblings and I often fought over who was the favorite child. The dramatic hooks at the end of each page make for a silly, giggly read aloud. Mr. Fuzzbuster has a hysterical personality that kids will surely adore. I have a feeling that this book will get funnier and funnier after each read aloud! The illustrations and humor will have readers begging for more Mr. Fuzzbuster.

Kellee’s Review: Unlike Ricki, my siblings and I didn’t have to fight about who was the favorite–I knew I was! 😉 [We’ll see if they read this review!] So I may be a bit like Mr. Fuzzbuster who is just loves his owner, Lily, so much that he cannot imagine his life without her. Kids will definitely relate to Mr. Fuzzbuster, and the book will also be a great chance to talk about how sometimes there are no favorites–a lesson that is taught in such a fun way that the reader won’t even realize they are being taught something! And the cartoonish, humorous illustrations just add to the fun of this book. Hemingway has such a distinct style of illustrations that are just so eye-catching and exciting to read. 

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: Teachers might ask students to make predictions at the end of each page. Because of the dramatic hooks, it would make predictions very enjoyable. I tried doing this with my three-year-old and while he is a bit young, we think we might be able to use this book for predictions in the near future! He slowly caught on!

Did you know Mr. Fuzzbuster loves writing notes? He wants to send cards to young readers across the country.  Maybe he will be your favorite. More information can be found at http://www.stacymcanulty.com/fuzzbuster-email.

Discussion Questions: Who is Lily’s favorite?; Why does the book end the way that it does?; Why do we feel a strong desire to be the favorite? How may this be harmful?

Flagged Passage: “Mr. Fuzzbuster knew he was Lily’s favorite. They’d been together since he fit in a teacup and she fit in diapers.”

Read This If You Loved: Dog vs. Cat by Chris Gall, Barkus by Patricia MacLachlanMemoirs of a Goldfish by Devin Scillian,  One Cool Friend by Toni Buzzeo, They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel, Ballet Cat by Bob Shea, Cat the Cat by Mo Willems

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Giveaway!
Two Lions is offering a copy of MR. FUZZBUSTER KNOWS HE’S THE FAVORITE to one lucky winner (U.S. addresses).
About the Author and Illustrator:
STACY MCANULTY is certain she’s her mom’s favorite. Her younger brother disagrees. She’s the author of Beautiful, illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff; Excellent Ed, illustrated by Julia Sarcone-Roach; and 101 Reasons Why I’m Not Taking a Bath, illustrated by Joy Ang. Originally from upstate New York, she now lives in Kernersville, North Carolina, with her three children, two dogs, and one husband. She doesn’t have a favorite. You can find her online at www.stacymcanulty.com.
 
EDWARD HEMINGWAY is certain he’s Stacy McAnulty’s favorite illustrator, although the illustrators of Stacy’s other books may disagree. Edward himself is the author and illustrator of the children’s books Bump in the Night, Bad Apple: A Tale of Friendship, Bad Apple’s Perfect Day, and Field Guide to the Grumpasaurus. Originally from Bozeman, Montana, he now lives in Brooklyn where he teaches creative writing at the master’s level at SVA in Manhattan. If he has any favorite students, he’ll never tell. Learn more about him online at www.edwardhemingway.com.

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**Thank you to Barbara at Blue Slip for providing a copy for review!**

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honest truth

The Honest Truth
Author: Dan Gemeinhart
Published: January 27, 2015 by Scholastic Press

Summary: In all the ways that matter, Mark is a normal kid. He’s got a dog named Beau and a best friend, Jessie. He likes to take photos and write haiku poems in his notebook. He dreams of climbing a mountain one day.

But in one important way, Mark is not like other kids at all. Mark is sick. The kind of sick that means hospitals. And treatments. The kind of sick some people never get better from.

So Mark runs away. He leaves home with his camera, his notebook, his dog, and a plan to reach the top of Mount Rainier–even if it’s the last thing he ever does.

The Honest Truth is a rare and extraordinary novel about big questions, small moments, and the incredible journey of the human spirit.

Ricki’s Review: In the introduction of the ARC, Dan Gemeinhart writes that this story was inspired by his friend Mark, who passed away from cancer. While the book is not about Mark, there are “smooth rocks of truth” within it. He wrote the story in hopes that Mark would enjoy reading it. With this in mind, I began the book already emotionally invested. Mark is a 12-year-old boy who has recently relapsed with cancer. He is tired of being sick, and he has set out with his dog and plans to go to Mt. Rainier to die. Much of the book is Mark’s journey to Rainier, and we slowly learn about his experiences with cancer throughout the story. Every other chapter is written by his best friend Jesse, and I found their friendship to be inspiring, particularly given the author’s introduction. This is a beautiful story that will leave a mark on readers’ hearts. I will be recommending it often.

Kellee’s Review: The Honest Truth was my first choice for my school’s faculty book club because I had only hear amazing things about it. I jumped into reading it without knowing anything about it, but by the end of the first page, I knew that all my friends who recommended it to me were right. Mark has a voice that is so full of hurt and sorrow that it jumps off the page and into your heart. The obstacles he faces and overcomes while also making his way to die alone show the strength of his character. I also was a big fan of the two points of view because it allows the reader to see what was going on at home and maybe get some more truth than what Mark was telling us (though he swears it all is the honest truth).

For our book club meeting, I tabbed up my book with passages I loved (I’ll list all the pages below), haikus that Mark wrote, and descriptions of all of the photographs he took along the way.

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: This would make a fantastic read-aloud. It has so much to discuss! The richly realized themes would make for fantastic conversations in the classroom. I would love to hear students’ thoughts about the story, particularly in relation to the discussion questions below. There are many debatable points in the story—which makes it all the more interesting to use as a read aloud!

Additionally, The Honest Truth would be a good introduction to haiku and visual story telling since Mark writes haiku and takes photographs to help tell his story. The haiku (in chronological order) are found on pages 120, 8, 22, 78, 79, 130. The photos Mark took are explained on pages 226-227. Using these as mentor texts, students can create their own story using poetry and photography.

More discussion ideas can be found at http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/lesson-plan/honest-truth-discussion-guide.

Discussion Questions: Was Mark selfish to leave home? Do you think he should have told his parents? Do you think what he did was fair? Were his actions fair to his dog?; If you were Jesse, would you have told authorities? Was she wrong to keep a secret? Do you think Mark had the ability to make such a big decision?; How did Gemeinhart use personification to help make the setting a character (see pages 34, 124, and 196)?; How much pressure do sick children have to act like adults?; How was Mark’s journey selfish? How was is selfless?; Who called? Wesley or Jess?; Why didn’t the mom ever look at her credit card report to see the train ticket?; Were you angry at Mark? Scared? How do you think students will feel?; Is a 12-year-old old enough to decide you want to die? Is it reasonable for adults to expect a kid to keep on going through treatment after treatment?

Flagged Passage: “Dogs die. But dogs live, too. Right up until they die, they live. They live brave, beautiful lives. They protect their families. And love us. And make our lives a little brighter. And they don’t waste time being afraid of tomorrow.”

Kellee’s favorite passages can be found on page 5 (“Here’s…”), 19 (“I bit…”), 21 (“I closed…”), 46 (“I was…”), 70 (“She knew…), 82 (“I like…), 97 (“Here’s…”), 179 (“They would…”), 212 (“And then…”), 228 (“There’s more…)

Read This Book If You Loved: “To Build a Fire” by Jack London; Hatchet by Gary Paulsen; The Call of the Wild by Jack London; Wonder by R.J. Palacio, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

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sophie quire

Sophie Quire and the Last Storyguard
A Peter Nimble Adventure
Author: Jonathan Auxier
Published April 5th, 2016 by Abrams Books

Summary: It’s been two years since Peter Nimble and Sir Tode rescued the kingdom of HazelPort. In that time, they have traveled far and wide in search of adventure. Now Peter and Sir Tode have been summoned by Professor Cake for a new mission: find a 12-year-old girl named Sophie Quire.

Sophie knows little beyond the four walls of her father’s bookshop, where she works as a bookmender and dreams of leaving the confines of her city walls. But when a strange boy and his talking cat/horse companion show up searching for a rare and mysterious book, she finds herself pulled into an adventure beyond anything she has ever read.

Teaching Guide: 

Sophie Quire is a special young lady, and you and your students are going to adore her adventure! Here is a teaching guide to help guide you or your students through your reading. This guide can be used as a tool for classrooms or book clubs.

You can also access the guide here.

You can learn more about Sophie at ABRAMS’ website.

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race car dreams

Race Car Dreams
Author: Sharon Chriscoe
Illustrator: Dave Mottram
Anticipated Published: September 13, 2016 by Running Press Kids

Goodreads Summary: After a day at the track of zipping and zooming, a race car is tired and ready for bed. He washes his rims, fills his tummy with oil, and chooses a book that is all about speed. All toasty and warm, he drifts off to sleep, he shifts into gear . . . and dreams of the race!

Ricki’s Review: I know I won’t be the only parent to say that my child cannot get enough cars. He eats, sleeps, and breathes cars, so I jumped at the chance to review this book. And boy, I wasn’t disappointed. The characterization within the text is engaging and fun, and I loved all of the integration of car parts/ideas in the race car’s preparation for bedtime. The race car comes to life, and I am grateful to have this book to read before bedtime. It engages my son while making him a sleepy boy! This charming book is going to be a story that parents read again and again.

Kellee’s Review: Any fan of Pixar cars or race cars in general is going to love the race car’s story. The personification of the car is adorable, I specifically like how his emotions can be read by looking at his eyes, and I love that the race car reads before bed! I would love to have students write their own stories of bedtime for vehicles (or other inanimate object) to see how school buses or tow trucks get ready for bed. In my life though, it is a bedtime story that my son loves to read.

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: It would be really fun to compare and contrast this book to some of the texts listed below in the “Read This If You Love” section. As avid readers of vehicle books, we know that each book has a different angle, and these are nuances that kids recognize and appreciate. It would be interesting to capitalize on these comparisons and differences to talk about how authors craft stories creatively and uniquely.

Discussion Questions: What does the race car do to prepare for bed? How does this compare to your bedtime routine?; How does the author make the race car come alive with personification?; How does the author craft the story in ways that make you sleepy?

Flagged Passage: “The zooming has stopped. The sun’s almost set. / A race car is tired. He’s wringing with sweat. / His day has been filled with high octane fun. He’s hugged all the curves. He’s had a good run.”

Read This If You Love: Race Car Count by Rebecca Kai Dotlich, Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site by by Sherri Duskey Rinker; The Racecar Alphabet by Brian Floca, Alphabeep: A Zipping, Zooming ABC by Debora PearsonThe Three Little Rigs by David Gordon, Ten Little School Cars by School Specialty Publishing

Follow the Tour!:

9/6 My Word Playground

9/7 MomReadIt

9/8 Unleashing Readers

9/9 Once Upon a Time…

9/10 Stacking Books

9/11 Geo Librarian

9/12 Flowering Minds

9/13 Unpacking the POWER of Picture Books

9/14 Little Crooked Cottage

9/14 MamaBelly

9/15 #kidlit Book of the Day

9/16 Just Kidding

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**Thank you to Cassie for providing copies for review!**

 

NFPB2016

Nonfiction Wednesday

Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday is hosted by Kid Lit Frenzy and was started to help promote the reading of nonfiction texts. Most Wednesdays, we will be participating and will review a nonfiction text (though it may not always be a picture book).
Be sure to visit Kid Lit Frenzy and see what other nonfiction books are shared this week!

coyote moon

Coyote Moon
Author: Maria Gianferrari
Illustrator: Bagram Ibatoulline
Published July 19th, 2016 by Roaring Brook Press

Summary: A howl in the night.
A watchful eye in the darkness.
A flutter of movement among the trees.
Coyotes.

In the dark of the night, a mother coyote stalks prey to feed her hungry pups. Her hunt takes her through a suburban town, where she encounters a mouse, a rabbit, a flock of angry geese, and finally an unsuspecting turkey on the library lawn

POUNCE!

Perhaps Coyote’s family won’t go hungry today.

About the Author: Maria writes both fiction and nonfiction picture books from her sunny, book-lined study in northern Virginia, with dog, Becca as her muse. Maria’s debut picture book, Penny & Jelly: The School Show, illustrated by Thyra Heder, was released in July 2015 (HMH Books for Young Readers); a companion book, Penny & Jelly Slumber Under the Stars, was released in mid-June. Her debut nonfiction book, Coyote Moon, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline, will be published by Roaring Brook Press in July and is a Junior Library Guild Selection. In October, Aladdin Books for Young Readers will publish another fiction title, Officer Katz & Houndini: A Tale of Two Tails, illustrated by Danny Chatzikonstantinou. Maria has five additional books forthcoming from Roaring Brook Press, Boyds Mills Press and GP Putnam’s Sons. To learn more about Maria, visit her at mariagianferrari.com on Facebook or Instagram.

Kellee’s Review: I love how this piece of narrative nonfiction is told. Although it is in third person (for most of the book), it gets the reader into the head of the coyote. It takes the reader on her nightly hunt for survival, and the suspense of the hunt is palpable. In addition to the fantastic way the story is told, the realistic and beautiful illustrations bring everything to life.

Ricki’s Review: The beautiful cover of this book reflects the mysterious, dark illustrations that will surely lure readers. I loved how the book is written in the narrative nonfiction style. I was learning about coyotes but enjoying this information through a captivating story. This is a book that will most certainly appeal to students. I can imagine a group of kids, listening to this book with wide eyes. I think it will inspire them to want to know even more about this majestic creature.

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: There are a few different ways that this text could be considered in the classroom. First, it is an interesting text to discuss point of view choices specifically because this book is told in third AND Second point of view. Also, this book could be the jumping off point for a student who wants to learn more about coyotes. Finally, Coyote Moon would be a perfect writing mentor text. Students could research their own animal then tell their animal’s story in a very detailed and similar way or with a different point of view choice.

Discussion Questions: How do the young coyotes survive while their mother is away?; What are some survival techniques that the prey use to escape from the coyote’s grasp?; What writing choices did the author make to help the reader become more involved in the story?; What point of view is the text in?; Is this text nonfiction or fiction?;

Flagged Passages: 

Coyote Moon Spread

From http://us.macmillan.com/coyotemoon-1/mariagianferrari

Read This If You Loved: Frozen Wild: How Animals Survive in the Coldest Places on Earth by Jim ArnoskyFlight of the Honey Bee by Raymond HuberWhen Lunch Fights Back: Wickedly Clever Animal Defenses by Rebecca L. JohnsonEye to Eye: How Animals See the World by Steve Jenkins,

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Giveaway!

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Don’t miss out on the other stops on the COYOTE MOON blog tour!

FRI 7/15:                   Pragmatic Mom
MON 7/18:                 Nonfiction Detectives
TUES 7/19:                Debtastic Reads
WED 7/20:                 Kid Lit Frenzy
THURS 7/21:              Librarian’s Quest
FRI 7/22:                   Kidlit411
MON 7/25:                 The Reading Zone
TUES 7/26:                Bartography
WED 7/27:                 Unleashing Readers

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**Thank you to Maria for providing copies for review!
And thank you to Roaring Book Press for providing a copy for giveaway!**

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my friend maggie

My Friend Maggie
Author and Illustrator: Hannah E. Harrison
Anticipated Publication: August 9, 2016 by Dial

Goodreads Summary: A sweet and heart-tugging story about bullying, friendship, and fitting in, perfect for readers of Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon

Paula and Maggie have been friends forever. Paula thinks Maggie is the best—until mean girl Veronica says otherwise. Suddenly, Paula starts to notice that Maggie is big and clumsy, and her clothes are sort of snuggish. Rather than sticking up for Maggie, Paula ignores her old friend and plays with Veronica instead. Luckily, when Veronica turns on Paula, Maggie’s true colors shine through.

This moving friendship story has all the heart and emotion of The Giving Tree and Kevin Henkes’s Chrysanthemum. The gorgeous artwork and important message make this a book to treasure. It’s truly a classic in the making.

Ricki’s Review: I loved this book from the moment I read it, and it will always hold a special place in my heart. I read it to some family members, and they had tears in their eyes by the end. It is a very special book that teaches wonderful lessons to children about friendship and bullying. The characters are incredibly endearing, and the illustrations make them come alive. My son asks me to read this book over and over again. I received this book as a galley, but I will be buying it to have a hard cover copy to love forever.

Kellee’s Review: This text deals with such a true issue that is not often touched in picture books: bullying and lack of friends because of being overweight. But anyone who is in schools knows that this type of behavior is happening younger and younger which leaves a large portion of young students feeling excluded from their peers. Maggie’s story gives teachers and parents an opportunity to discuss this issue without it seeming “real” because it is with animals. But this story is more than a bullying story, it is a story about true friends and how they aren’t always who you are looking for. 

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: This would be a fantastic book to share with students on the first day of school. The characters experience problems that are common to most humans as their friendships evolve. It shows the effects of bullying and the power of friendship. Teachers might refer back to this book whenever bullying or friendships seem to be affecting students and/or the classroom environment.

Discussion Questions: What choices does Paula make? Why do you think that she makes these choices? How do they affect her friendship with Maggie?; What kinds of qualities does Maggie portray? Do you think she made the right decision?; How have some of your friendships evolved as you’ve grown up?

Flagged Passage: “This is my friend Maggie. We’ve been friends forever. She’s great at splashing in mud puddles. She helps me reach the reddest apples. She even lifts me up when I can’t see.”

*Make sure to check out the book to see the detailed and perfect illustrations.

Read This If You Loved: You Are (Not) Small by Anna Kang, Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson (Kellee’s Review | Ricki’s Review), Big Bug by Henry Cole, Horns to Toes by Sandra Boynton, Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae, Unicorn Thinks He’s Pretty Great by Bob Shea, The Magic of Maxwell and His Tail by Maureen Stolar Kanefield

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