July 23, 2017

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Chapter Books Xpress Reviews | March 2017

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1703_Xpress_ChapBks_PartyColleen, Marcie. Super Happy Party Bears Party Collection: Gnawing Around and Knock Knock on Wood. illus. by Steve James. 288p. Imprint. Jan. 2017. Tr $8.99. ISBN 9781250131171.

Gr 1-4 –This colorful and humorous chapter book collection includes the first two volumes in this delightfully silly series. In Gnawing Around, Beavers move into Grumpy Woods, cutting off access to the river and using up all the wood. The citizens must work together with the Super Happy Party Bears to stop them. In Knock Knock on Wood, Wallace Woodpecker’s loud pecking disturbs the residents and it’s up to the Super Happy Party Bears to turn the annoyance into an opportunity for “dancercise.” In each tale, the Super Happy Party Bears come to the rescue and help save the day. Colleen has created a series that is funny, charming and upbeat. Bright, cartoon-style art adds to the humor and appeal. Short, fast-paced chapters will keep new readers engaged. VERDICT An amusing read aloud selection full of positive energy.–H. Islam, Brooklyn Public Library

Herman, Gail. Farm Friends Escape! ISBN 9781618934161.

Nichols, Catherine. Dolphin Rescue. ISBN 9781618934178.

ea vol: 112p. (Animal Planet Adventures). ebook available. photos. Time. Feb. 2017. Tr. $14.95; pap. $4.99.

1703_Xpress_ChapBks_AnimalPlanetGr 1-3 –A new series featuring animal-centered mysteries. In Farm Friends Escape!, 11-year-old cousins Sarah and Luke, who spend summers with their grandparents on their farm, must discover who released the animals from the petting zoo. In Dolphin Rescue, 10-year-old Maddie and her nine-year-old brother Atticus live in a close-knit island community with their single father, and they must solve the mystery of who has been dumping trash cans in their neighborhood. In each story, the animals and the children have interactions that will delight kids (Atticus and Maddie save a baby dolphin, and Sarah and Luke rescue their rabbit right before she gives birth). Young readers will enjoy the twist in each mystery—a misbehaved dog knocking over the trash, and a clever goat unlatching the petting zoo gate—as well as the full-color photographs and related facts about the animals or setting interspersed throughout the text. VERDICT An engaging new mystery series that all elementary age students, not just emerging or reluctant readers, will find satisfying.–Sally James, South Hillsborough Elementary School, Hillsborough, CA

This article was published in School Library Journal's March 2017 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

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