Monthly Archives: November 2017

Melvin the Mouth, Young Mel Blanc…before he was the Man of 1,000 Voices

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Melvin the Mouth, Young Mel Blanc…before he was the Man of 1,000 Voices
by Katherine Blanc, illustrated by Jeffrey Ebbeler
Charlesbridge, 2017

The words and illustrations take readers into the heart of a ‘sound’ genius, Mel Blanc, who, as an adult, created voices/sounds for 1500 movie/television characters.

Young Mel loves to create sounds to go along with the vivid characters he imagines.  Everything is BIG for Mel.  He Whooooooosh’s down the hall.  He captures kids with his Rrow! RROW!  Even, ‘garbage duty’ turns into a Zrroom-Zroom race car screeching around corners.  Readers will love all the trouble Mel gets into just being himself.  And they will love that the parents accept that someday Mel will use his ‘talent’ in some useful way when he grows up.  A supportive story for a child’s ‘gifts’.  Back matter includes background on Mel’s work as an adult. (Think Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Barney Rubble and 1,497 more!)

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Twinderella, A Fractioned Fairy Tale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Twinderella, A Fractioned Fairy Tale
by Corey Rosen Schwartz, illustrated by Deborah Marcero
G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2017

Written in perfect rhyme, Twinderella is a rich spin off the original Cinderella.

The story claims Cinderella was a twin, and this tells the true story of the two sisters and what happened to the quiet twin. While being forced to care for their evil step-sisters, the twins had their own dreams.  When they were told they couldn’t go to the ball, God Mom appeared and changed things for them.  The prince danced with both and fell in love. When the glass slipper fit both the twins, he had to choose.  And so he did… you’ll have to find out how!

They titled it a ‘fractional’ tale because math and fractions fill the pages; math lovers will adore the story.  A fun read where they live, “happ’ly ever half-ter.”

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I am Gandhi

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am Gandhi
By Brad Meltzer, illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos
Dial Books for Young Readers, 2017

Brad Meltzer knows how to write biographies that bring young readers right into the heart of the person featured.

In I am Gandhi, we learn Gandhi was afraid of snakes, not good at sports and ran home so people wouldn’t make fun of him.  Even though he read lots of books, he wasn’t good at school.  The book goes on to tell about all the social injustices he experienced as an Indian in South Africa.  One day he decided to do something about it.  He made his first speech and formed the Natal Indian Congress.  Most importantly, he came up with Satyagraha, outlining peaceful methods to changing the social injustices.  Written so young minds can understand how and why his simple methods resulted in change, this is an inspiring story about how an ordinary person made a change in the world.

Meltzer has sold more than a million non-fiction books for young readers. Look for his other inspiring, ‘hero’ stories.

Read more reviews and discover more Brad Meltzer books on Amazon.

A Small Thing…but Big

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Small Thing…but Big
By Tony Johnston, illustrated by Hadley Hooper
Neal Porter Book, 2016

A young toddler goes to the park where she meets a dog and an old man.  Afraid, she asks if the dog will bark.  Assured she wouldn’t, Lizzie asked, does she bite?  She gives Cecile a pat, which the dog seemed to enjoy.  The man invites her to go for a walk with Cecile.  Lizzie hangs on to the leash.  Told the dog walks springingly, Lizzie walks springingly, too.  The man asks Lizzie if she’d like to hold the leash and soon she walks the dog with the man nearby.  After another loop, the man ventures that Lizzie can walk the dog by herself.  The man and Lizzie’s mom watch Lizzie walk the dog by herself.  A small thing, but big.

A delightful story capturing a toddler’s fear of a new experience.  The illustrations capture the girl’s innocence and bravery as she explores her world.

Read more reviews on Amazon.

My Thumb

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


My Thumb

by Karen Hesse, illustrated by Rich Deas
Feiwel and Friends, 2016

Written by Newbery Award winning author Karen Hesse, this story covers the many, many ways a young girl loves her thumb—and it’s all in rhyme!  Delightful to the ear it shares positive and affirming words for any young readers who love their thumb.

I love my thumb.  I truly do.
It tastes of pears and carrot stew.
It’s like a hug, an “I love you.”

Of course, loving her thumb as much as she does, she sometimes finds it difficult to do certain things, like run, play music or eat gum.  But she knows she’d feel glum without it and accepts any limitations.  It ends with all the positive attributes the thumb provides her.

This book is perfect for both child who enjoy their thumbs and parents who think thumb-sucking should go away.  It reassures the child that thumbs are good and reminds the parent that the thumb means something to the child and they are not yet ready to depart from that bit of reassurance or nurturing that they receive.

Read more reviews on Amazon.

Philomena’s New Glasses

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Philomena’s New Glasses
By Brenna Maloney
Viking, 2017

A perfect book for siblings.

Philomena had poor eyesight and got new glasses.  But as soon as she did, her sister got some too.  Then her other sister thought that maybe she, too, should have glasses.  Then Philomena bought a handbag to store her glasses.  Her second sister got one and used it for snacks.  The third sister got one, too, just to be the same.  Eventually, they realize that ‘not everyone needs the same things” and unnecessary things disappear…until…

Author/artist Brenna Maloney uses her own pet guinea pigs for this bemusing tale of three sisters.

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Old MacDonald Had a Farm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Old MacDonald Had a Farm
by Gris Grimly
Orchard Books, 2017

Every child knows the song, Old MacDonald Had a Farm, but this book has a GREAT BIG surprise ending!  Author/artist Gris Grimly, raised on a farm and now lives in a city, decided to share his family’s version of this song with young readers.  His illustrations are fun, action-filled, and include several surprises and sub-stories to delight the visually alert readers, including a ‘heart’ patch on the farmer’s overalls. A great family story.

Back matter includes a brief history of the song—an early version sung during WWI—its music, as well as old-timey pictures of Gris Grimly’s farming family.

Read more reviews on Amazon.