September 1, 2015

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Thank You and Good Night by Patrick McDonnell | SLJ Review


MCDONNELL, Patrick. Thank You and Good Night. illus. by Patrick McDonnell. 40p. Little, Brown. Oct. 2015. Tr $15.99. ISBN 9780316338011.
PreS-Gr 1–Clement, a rabbit, is having his first sleepover. Jean (an elephant) and Alan Alexander (a bear) arrive appropriately dressed in pajamas, ready to take part in the fun. The friends spend their evening in innocent pursuits, such as happily performing the chicken dance, playing hide-and-seek, and jumping on the bed. Maggie, the young girl who shares Clement’s home, serves each […]

Review: Roller Girl

This summer I challenged myself to read as much as I could. I made sure to keep my house inundated with books, which between the loads of reserves I placed at the public library and the many books I still have from Book Expo America, is not a problem. I also wanted to do a […]

Middle Grade Monday Book Review – School for Sidekicks by Kelly McCullough

Something is rotten in the state of Heropolis! Or, rather, several somethings are rotten, and maybe not quite what you think. Well, really, it’s a very broad and layered situation with various levels of understanding and complexities to points of view. Obviously, this is not just another book where a kid discovers he has super […]

Review of the Day: Moletown by Torben Kuhlmann

Moletown By Torben Kuhlmann North/South Books, Inc. $17.95 ISBN: 978-0-7358-4208-3 Ages 4-6 On shelves October 1st Cautionary tales for kids who can’t do a darn thing about the original problem. It’s sort of a subgenre of its very own. As I hold this lovely little book, Moletown, in my hands I am transported back in […]

Little Robot by Ben Hatke | SLJ Review


HATKE, Ben. Little Robot. illus. by Ben Hatke. 144p. First Second. Sept. 2015. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781626720800.
Gr 2-4–Once again Hatke delivers a delightful graphic novel with a positive female role-model, fun non-humans, and a message of friendship. When a brown-skinned cherubic girl chances upon a robot that looks like a trash can, she finds a friend worth protecting. Each day they explore the junkyard and the surrounding forest, with the little girl acting as a guide to new sights and […]

Mixed Me by Taye Diggs and Shane W. Evans | SLJ Review


DIGGS, Taye. Mixed Me! illus. by Shane W. Evans. 40p. Feiwel & Friends. Oct. 2015. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781250047199.
Gr 2-5–A little boy with wildly curly hair navigates the social terrain of being a biracial child. Diggs’s short, choppy, rhyming verses convey the busyness of a kid who likes “to go FAST!” All through his day he encounters people staring and asking questions. “See, my dad’s a deep brown and my mom’s rich cream and honey. Then people see me, and […]

The Sound And The Fury | SLJ Spotlight


Two nonfiction titles speak on the power of music.

A “Completely and Utterly Disgusting” Game, Among Others | Touch and Go


With only a few weeks left before summer is over, it’s time to download a few playful apps. While fun and games rule, you’ll discover that planning, strategy, and skill also come into play. Oh, yes, and then there’s that “completely and utterly disgusting” game for fans of Roald Dahl.

Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear by Lindsay Mattick and Sophie Blackall | SLJ Review


MATTICK, Lindsay. Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear. illus. by Sophie Blackall. 56p. Little, Brown. Oct. 2015. Tr ISBN 9780316324908. LC 2014041128.
K-Gr 3–This sweet tale of the black bear that inspired the legendary children’s book character Winnie-the-Pooh will resonate with readers. In the framing story, a mother tells her son, Cole, a bedtime tale about how veterinarian Harry Colebourn, a young Canadian soldier on his way to train and fight in Europe during World War […]

Book Review: Cut Both Ways by Carrie Mesrobian

Publisher’s Description: From William C. Morris YA Debut Award nominee Carrie Mesrobian, Cut Both Ways is an unflinching look at a high school senior who must come to terms with his attraction to both his girlfriend and his male best friend. It took Will Caynes seventeen years to have his first kiss. He should be […]

Review: ‘Superman: The Men of Tomorrow’

Superman: The Men of Tomorrow Writer: Geoff Johns Artists: John Romita Jr. and Klaus Janson DC Comics; $25 Rated T for Teen Superman may be DC’s flagship character, and his comic book one of their foundational ones, but Superman has been particularly troubled since the 2011 New 52 relaunch, running through writers and artists at […]

Stunning images of our “Invisible Universe” are brought to life in NOVA’s new documentary | DVD Pick


Invisible Universe Revealed. (NOVA) 54 min Dist. by PBS. 2015. $24.99. ISBN 9781627893619.
Gr 4-8–This 25th-anniversary tribute to the Hubble Space Telescope combines jaw-dropping deep space photographs with an unusually detailed account of how the defective mirror that nearly derailed the entire project was fixed. The story begins with the discoveries of early 20th-century astronomer Edwin Hubble. Veteran scientists—notably NASA’s chief astronomer Nancy Roman, now in her nineties and known as the “Mother of Hubble”—describe how the telescope was designed, manufactured, […]

The Wrinkled Crown by Anne Nesbet | SLJ Review


NESBET, Anne. The Wrinkled Crown. 400p. ebook available. HarperCollins/Harper. Nov. 2015. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780062104298.
Gr 3-7–Linny is approaching her coming-of-age “twelve ceremony,” when she will at last be able to touch a lourka—the almost magical, exquisitely toned, stringed instrument, named for Linny’s village in the wrinkled hills. The instrument has been forbidden to her until now. The trouble is, Linny has already broken this strict rule and made her own lourka, which she plays in secret, and only her best […]

Review From This Month’s School Library Journal: The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell

When I’m reviewing books for professional publications, I stay quiet about them on social media. I’m always really excited once a review comes out to be able to talk about the book, finally! Here’s one of my most recent reviews, which originally appeared in the August 2015 issue of School Library Journal.   Gaiman, Neil. The Sleeper and […]

Mousetropolis by R. Gregory Christie | SLJ Review


CHRISTIE, R. Gregory. Mousetropolis. illus. by R. Gregory Christie. 32p. Holiday House. Sept. 2015. Tr $16.95. ISBN 9780823423194; ebk. $16.95. ISBN 9780823434879. LC 2013020212.
Gr K-2–A retelling of Aesop’s “The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse.” After a letter arrives from his country cousin, City Mouse, unwilling to tolerate the noise emanating from a neighboring apartment in Mousetropolis, decides to vacation in the country. There are humorous touches in the brief text, but it is the illustrations, executed in acrylic gouache, that […]

Teens Review “Everything, Everything,” “Teen Boat” Sequel, and More


The Kitsap (WA) Regional Library YA Book Group reviewers tackle new romances, such as Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon, Westerns, such as Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson, and the sequel to John Green and Dave Roman’s Teen Boat graphic novel.

Review: ‘Looney Tunes #226′

Looney Tunes #226 Writers: Bill Matheny and Sholly Fisch Artists: Dave Alvarez, Walter Carzon, and Horacio Ottolini DC Comics; $2.99 Rated E, for Everyone Preview here. So what’s the first thing that jumps out at you regarding the cover of the latest issue of DC’s Looney Tunes comic series? For me, it was the issue […]

Book Trailer Premier: Big Bear, Little Chair by Lizi Boyd

Once in a while an artist comes along who does work so beautifully that you cannot help but gawp. Particularly gawpable (a word? Tis now) is Lizi Boyd.  And today, I’m pleased as punch to premiere the book trailer for her latest.  It’s a simple concept book . . . at first.  Probe a little […]

Book Review: Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler (reviewed by Lexi)

Today I am very excited to share with you the first book review from our new teen book reviewer Lexi. You can learn a little bit more about her at the About TLT page. “You’ve just made an oath with the sea.” Summary: The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d’Abreau was destined for stardom—until […]

The Wolf-Birds by Willow Dawson | SLJ Review


DAWSON, Willow. The Wolf-Birds. illus. by Willow Dawson. 40p. bibliog. Owlkids. Sept. 2015. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781771470544. LC 2015900227.
K-Gr 2–This attractive picture book portrays the relationship between wolves and ravens, explaining how these birds often lead wolves to prey that both creatures can then eat. Having lost the chase of an evasive bison, the cold, wandering wolves follow a familiar cry, “the sound of hungry ravens!” Working together, wolves and “wolf-birds” track and hunt prey to keep starvation at bay […]