Wednesday, December 1, 2010

All of Me by Molly Bang

All of Me: A book of thanks, by Molly Bang
Not since Maurice Sendak’s Mickey declared “I’m in the milk and the milk’s in me!” has there been a book that so thoroughly captured the joy and wonder of being a preschooler. Beginning with a close-up of two sturdy feet, a small child gives thanks for different parts of his (or her?) body, for the five senses, for emotions, for the whole universe, inside and out. The mixed media collage illustrations are created on brown paper bags and suggest that this is a handcrafted celebration of all things self. The endpapers contain a description of Bang’s process for writing and illustrating the book. A perfect fit for preschoolers.
Target age: Preschool-Kindergarten

This review originally appeared in the Kutztown Book Review, Fall 2010.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A Den is a Bed for a Bear, by Becky Baines

A Den is a Bed for a Bear, by Becky Baines
This engaging book presents simple facts about hibernation. The rhyming text provides straight-forward facts with few challenging vocabulary words, making this perfect for new readers. Additional details are provided in smaller type scattered around the page. The kid-friendly design features cut-out photographs of bears and their dens, arranged on the page amidst line drawings. Arrows with a hand drawn look direct captions to their corresponding photos. The overall effect is that of a scrapbook. The rhyme and rhythm are similar to those of Mary Ann Hoberman’s A House is a House for Me. This would be an excellent introduction to the concept of hibernation or paired with Hoberman’s work for an introduction to homes.
Target age: 3-6 years

A House is a House for Me, by Mary Ann Hoberman
Old Bear, by Kevin Henkes

This review was originally published in the Kutztown Book Review, Fall 2010.