Author Archive

Walter’s Wonderful Web

October 18, 2016

walterWalter’s Wonderful Web by Tim Hopgood

Walter, a fuzzy looking spider, wants to make a perfect web, but all of his webs are “wibby-wobbly.”  As he tries to perfect his web, he creates different shapes, which each get blown away by the wind.  Finally, he creates a web which combines all of the shapes, and as it glows in the moonlight it is wonderful!

Not only is this little story full of great alliterative w’s, it’s a great participatory book to read to a group of children.  Hopgood uses a repetitive phrase, “Whoosh, went the wind,” which the children will love to say as they sweep their arms in a whooshing motion.  (Be sure to encourage the motion, and the next time you lift your arm, they’ll know exactly when to chime in.)  Another way to encourage participation occurs at each page turn.  A slight pause gives the children time to announce the shape as you reveal it.  I hope you’ll enjoy sharing this story, whether you read it to one or many children!


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Dragon Was Terrible

September 29, 2016


Dragon Was Terrible by Kelly DiPucchio and illustrated by Greg Pizzoli

Honestly, this book is adorable!  Dragon is terrible, because that’s how dragons are.  The king and his villagers are resolved to tame him and even promise a reward.  I love that the resolution to the situation speaks to the power of a good story.  The promised reward was the cherry on top.

Dragon Was Terrible is illustrated by Greg Pizzoli, a favorite author/illustrator of mine (The Watermelon Seed).  I am so happy that DiPucchio and Pizzoli have partnered for this new book.  I think it will appeal to preschoolers who are developing their sense of humor, and of course younger elementary aged children.

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Hoodoo by Ronald L. Smith

August 30, 2016

hoodooHoodoo by Ronald L. Smith

Looking for a page turner?  I picked up Hoodoo, because I heard it would keep you on the edge of your seat.  Set in 1930’s Alabama, Hoodoo Hatcher, twelve, needs to learn to conjure to defeat the “Stranger,” threatening the town with black magic.  Be sure to know your reader, because this story might be too scary.  But it’s perfect for those who like a bit of a shiver.  After all, Halloween is just two months away!

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D is for Dress-Up: The ABC’s of What to Wear by Maria Carluccio

July 8, 2016

dressupD Is for Dress-Up: The ABC’s Of What we Wear by Maria Carluccio

It is hot outside and cool clothing may be on your mind.  This little book is a perfect solution for the summer heat.  Curl up on the couch in the air-conditioning and enjoy the alphabet as you talk about the clothes we wear.

Not all alphabet books are created equal.  They are best when they include uppercase and lowercase letters, plus corresponding words that make sense to children.  D is for Dress-up shows each uppercase letter, and prints a lower case word below the uppercase.  The choice of clothing items are mostly recognizable to children, along with one or two words that are great vocabulary expanders; E is for ensemble or V is for vintage.  The illustrations feature soft painted colors, diverse children and diverse activities.  This alphabet book is a winner!

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A Dark, Dark Cave

June 29, 2016

darkcaveA Dark, Dark Cave by Eric Hoffman and illustrated by Corey R. Tabor

The illustrations of A Dark, Dark Cave feature a brother and older sister exploring a cave with their flashlights, only to reveal, (spoiler alert) they are just pretending, and being a bit loud in the process!  So, what should they do now?  You guessed.  Play another imaginary game.  Children love to use their imaginations, and this great little rhyming story is attuned to that.  Were you a child who liked to play under a blanket, placed under two chairs?

Harrington Library’s Family Place area has a “Hideaway Cube” which is covered with a blue netlike cloth.  Two or three children at a time fit under the net, and I’ve seen children in it playing, reading quietly, or “hiding.” It’s perfect for the imaginative child.  Come visit us today, and bring your imagination.

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Grumpy Pants by Claire Messer

June 22, 2016

grumpypantsGrumpy Pants by Claire Messer

Are you and your toddler feeling hot, and bothered this summer?  A bit grumpy?  So is Penguin in Claire Messer’s book, Grumpy Pants.

Penguin is not really sure why he’s in a bad mood, so he tries stomping home, pulling off all of his grumpy clothes, bit by bit, until he counts to three and jumps in the bath.  Eventually, he feels better and goes to bed with a fresh attitude for tomorrow.  This is a perfect book to share with toddlers who are learning to manage their emotions.  It might even elicit a giggle as Penguin takes off his grumpy underpants.

Grumpy Pants is Claire Messer’s first picture book, and I’m looking forward to more from her!

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Dash by Kirby Larson

April 22, 2016

DashjacketX6W1G7TADash by Kirby Larson

Historical fiction is my favorite genre, because I love learning about other time periods and other perspectives of life.

Dash is set during World War II. The story revolves around Mitsi, who is separated from her dog, Dash, when her family is sent to a Japanese internment camp.  Based on the story of a real life person, the story touched my heart.  Larson’s writing pulls you into a young girl’s emotional perspective.  Fortunately, Mitsi and Dash are reunited, but unfortunately the internment camps were a reality that impacted so many people in America in a negative way.

I have read a couple of Kirby Larson books for teens and kids, and I’m glad I tried this one. On page 200 of the book, one of the adult characters who has created a tumbleweed garden at the camp, says, “…if you look with your heart, you can find beauty anywhere.” This book would be great for young readers and adults who are willing to discuss the past and look to the future!

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My Dog’s a Chicken

March 30, 2016


My Dog’s a Chicken by Susan McElroy Montanari, illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf

Lula Mae wants a puppy. You might think that this is a theme you’ve read before, but I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised!  Lula Mae lives on a farm full of chickens, and times are hard.  So rather than give up her dream of a puppy, she makes do with what she has, and names one of the chickens, “Pookie.”  She completes the picture by clipping a red ribbon on Pookie’s head.

Children will enjoy hearing this story read aloud. They will “Bawk!” with Pookie, and laugh at the family antics.  The colorful painted illustrations by Anne Wilsdorf are pleasing, and I love all the big round chicken eyes!

This is a new favorite of mine. I think you’ll like it too!

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I Hear a Pickle

February 9, 2016

hearpickleI Hear a Pickle (and Smell, See, Touch, and Taste It, Too!) by Rachel Isadora

Parents, and teachers of preschool children often ask for books about the five senses. Isadora’s new book will be perfect to suggest.

Each sense is described over several pages, with simple sentences beside small illustrations of children in action. The final page features the child from the cover eating a delicious pickle, as he tastes, smells, sees, touches and hears the pickle.  “Crunch!”

Come by the library to check out this fun new book to read to children while talking about their senses. I’m off to buy a jar of pickles!

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Noni the Pony Goes to the Beach

January 21, 2016

nonibeachNoni the Pony Goes to the Beach by Alison Lester

I’m ready for a warm sunny day, and a trip to the beach.  How about you?  If you need some inspiration, check out Noni the Pony Goes to the Beach. In this charming story, Noni and her friends, Dave Dog and Coco the Cat, go on an adventure to the beach.  Slightly silly, and full of rhyming words, this book will be perfect for your favorite preschooler.

And if this book puts you in the mood for more books about the beach, try our Beach theme bag, which includes nine books, a puppet, and a felt rhyme about sandcastles.  Search the catalog for keywords: Beach theme, or search theme bag for a list of all of our themes.

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