Sunday, November 11, 2012

Sunday Review

I'm reading a lot of picture books so I can share them with my classes for Picture Book Month and our Mock Caldecott 2013 Club.  Here are the books I finished this week:

Bink and Gollie, Two for One Bink and Gollie: Two for One by Kate DiCamillo and Alisaon McGhee, illustrated by Tony Fucile

early-reader, friendship, humor

I laughed out loud all through this book. I read it for Mr. Sharp's and Mr. Schu's November book club , and I couldn't be more glad I did. Hilarious and endearing!

Ling & Ting: Not Exactly the Same!
  Ling & Ting: Not Exactly the Same! by Grace Lin

character-traits, early-reader, multicultural, sisters

Cute! I read this one for John Schu's and Colby Sharp's November Twitter book club, too. Participants had fun discussing Ling and Ting's antics. My favorite chapter was "The Haircuts." Ling and Ting might be twins, but they are not exactly the same!

Red Knit Cap Girl  Red Knit Cap Girl by Naoko Stoop

friendship, mock-caldecott-2013, mood-tone, nature, picture-book, problem-solution, setting

Red Knit Cap Girl wonders about everything in nature, but mostly she wonders if she could ever get close enough to the Moon to talk to her. With her constant companion, Bunny, by her side, they ask Owl for advice. He tells her she will find away. She gathers her forest friends together and decides Moon would like decorations. They make paper lanterns and hang them, but nothing but silence comes. When they problem solve by blowing out the lanterns, the Moon comes out at last. They learn that in the quiet and darkness, light will appear. I love the devotion Bunny has for Red Knit Cap Girl and the simplicity of the illustrations and story.

Laundry Day
Laundry Day by Maurie J. Manning

onnections, historical-fiction, mock-caldecott-2013, multicultural, picture-book, setting, social studies

I liked this story of a shoeshine boy in New York City when it was full of carts and horses. The tenements are crowded with people from many countries and cultures. He can't find anyone who wants a shine. Suddenly, a red scarf drifts down from above, and the shoeshine boy searches high and low to find where it came from. He meets an old Chinese woman, a Russian mother, an Italian organ grinder, Polish girls, a rabbi, and finally identifies the Jamaican woman whose headscarf it is. He climbs back down the tenements until he gets to the street and then we see the woman letting the scarf sail back down to land around the boy. This seems to be a stroke of good luck because he finally finds a shoe to shine. I love the cat that accompanies the shoeshine boy wherever he goes. Much of the story is told wordlessly. This book could only be done justice if read aloud with accents for each character!

The Hueys in the New SweaterThe Hueys in the New Sweater by Oliver Jeffers
individuality, mock-caldecott-2013, picture-book, theme

"The thing about the Hueys was that they were all the same...until the day one of them - Rupert was his name - knitted a nice new sweater." Funny little illustrations, and a theme of being yourself - the ending was cute. It was basically the retelling of Dr.Suess's Sneetches.

Unspoken: A Story From the Underground Railroad
GORGEOUS. When I got this book in the mail after reading about it in several blogs, I knew it would become one of my most treasured picture books. I even love the texture of the book jacket and the thick pages. It's a beautifully told wordless story about a girl who discovers a runaway slave hiding in her family's barn. The girl's courage and compassion leads her to feed the stranger and help keep his secret. We never see the face of the runaway slave. We only see his eye peering out from his hiding place. He returns her gift of protection with a gift of his own for her. I love this one, and it is now one of my top choices to win the Caldecott.

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