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Children's Bookwatch

Volume 21, Number 3 March 2011 Home | CBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Science Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf
Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Folktale/Fairytale Shelf Gardening Shelf
Cookbook Shelf Art Shelf Activity Shelf
Bilingual Shelf Comix/Graphic Novel Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Judaic Studies Shelf Fiction Shelf Self-Help Shelf
Music CD Shelf DVD Shelf ABC Shelf
Picturebook Shelf Books in Series  

Reviewer's Choice

Shades of People
Shelley Rotner and Sheila M. Kelly
Shelley Rotner, photographer
Holiday House
425 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10017
9780823421916 $16.95

"Shades of People" is a children's photo-essay book of the rainbow of colors of human skin. though there are many shades of skin color, sometimes even in the same family, skin is only a covering. "Shades of People" points out "you can't tell what someone is like from the color of their skin." "Shades of People" is a beautiful book that teaches celebration of diversity to young children, especially in human skin coloring.

Safari through the Land of Landu
Angela Karanja
Xlibris Corporation
1663 South Liberty Drive, Bloomington, IN 47403-5161
9781450079167 $15.99

"Safari Through the Land of Landu" is a motivational book for young children that teaches the 4 Irrefutable Principles of Prosperity through fun rhymes, songs, chants, poems and stories. Brightly colored illustrations take the reader on a tour or safari guided by Queen Dhahabu, a squirrel in the Land of Landu. They meet many interesting animals and say "Jambo (hello in Swahili)" and sign songs with them. The meerkat, Marrnu is the motivational leader. Although Manku the monkey forgot to prepare food for the safari tour guests, he solves the problem of hunger by arranging a rain of fruit on everyone that is fun and satisfying. Many peppy songs and activities are presented in a whirl of fun. "Safari Through the Land of Landu" is a product of children's motivational entertainment based on the 5 E's, Edify, Educate, Enrich, Empower, and Entertain. "Safari Through the Land of Landu" exemplifies these principles in a fun, attractive bundle, helping to impel children to be confident and achieve excellence in many areas.

The Adventures of Blue Ocean Bob
Brooks Olbrys, author
Aleksandra Beaucher, illustrator
Children's Success Unlimited LLC
521 Fifth Avenue, 27th Floor, New York, NY 10175
9780982961308 $16.99

"The Adventures of Blue Ocean Bob: Blue Ocean Bob Discovers His Purpose" is an inspirational, versed, illustrated life-goals guide book for kids based on the philosophy and teachings of Bob Proctor, also Napoleon Hill and Earl Nightingale. Blue Ocean Bob is the first book in a series. In it, Bob discovers his life's goal and purpose (which is to become a marine biologist and help protect and sustain healthy sea life) through the wise help and counsel of his sea friends, including a humming bird named Xena, a dolphin named Al, and a wise old sea turtle named Doc. Doc teaches Bob to "follow his bliss (words of Joseph Campbell)" and to visualize his wish, imagining it coming true. Colorful illustrations of ocean scenes and friendly seaside frolics help deliver the message of Blue Ocean Bob to children ages 7 and up.

Red Chair Press
PO Box 333, South Egremont, MA 01258

Red Chair Press is a new and independent publisher of quality books on social and emotional learning that are as entertaining and colorfully illustrated as they are especially appropriate for young readers ages 4 to 7. This 24-title series of readers is divided into two 12-title thematic sets: Developing Character ($62.95) which has as its focus stories illustrating such issues as friendship, sharing, perseverance, and obeying the rules; while Living Healthy ($62.95) has as its focus stories illustrating the importance of good dental care, healthful eating, appreciating differences, and dealing with bullies. Thoroughly 'kid friendly', thoughtful and thought-provoking, and just plain fun to read, these two sets of early readers are especially recommended for school and community library collections, as well as independent home-schooling curriculum supplements. Although each title in these two series is available separately for $3.95 each, the highest recommendation is for acquiring both the 12-title sets complete and intact.

The Science Shelf

Thomas the T. Rex
Michael Smith, author
Gayle Garner Roski, illustrator
East West Discovery Press
P.O. Box 3585, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
9780982167533 $19.95

"Thomas the T. Rex: The Journey of a Young Dinosaur to Los Angeles" is the true story of the discovery and unearthing one of the five most complete T. Rex fossil skeletons in Montana, near the South Dakota Badlands. Told from the viewpoint of nine-year old Thomas and his cousin Rita, "Thomas the T. Rex" tells the story of the excavation and preparation of the find, the three years of further excavation work required from 2003-2005, and the ultimate journey of the fossil to be prepared for its public debut in the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County in July of 2011. Thomas and Rita are part of a study expedition of the Junior Scientist Club of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles. The trip and summer work of the Junior Scientist club is long and requires serious planning, for the junior scientists and friends must pack in all their own camping gear plus enough food and water for all washing, cleaning, and drinking for all their camping stay, because the Badlands where the dig is situated have no water or other easily available facilities. Thomas and Rita settle in and learn to look for fossils, then to treat them very gently at all times. "Thomas the T. Rex" is filled with colorful, expressive water color paintings that perfectly illustrate the kids' activities at the dig. There are also actual photographs of the 2003-2005 dig in the Team Discovery section. There is a fascinating fact sheet about Thomas that tells many cool facts that can be deduced from the fossil skeleton of the 66 million year old T. Rex. Although the actual credit of the discovery of the fossil of Thomas the T. Rex belongs to a high school teacher named Robert Curry, the rest of the essential facts presented in Thomas the T. Rex" are true. This is a fascinating and inspiring book for junior scientists age 7 and up.

Michael Smith, author
Octavio Oliva, illustrator
East West Discovery Press
P.O. Box 3585, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
9780979933981 $16.95

"Relativity" is an original illustrated book about (not Einstein's theory but) the relativity of all things. simple versed text and combined photo-drawn illustrations help show children that comparisons are always relative. "If you think going to China is far, what would you think about going to a star?" "Relativity" is an engaging book designed to get curious 4-year-olds (and up) to start thinking comparatively, and analytically.

The Earth, Its Structure & Its Changes
Tom DeRosa, Carolyn Reeves, authors
Master Books, New Leaf Publishing Group
P O Box 726, Green Forest, AR 72638
9780890515921 $12.99

"The Earth, Its Structure & Its Changes" is a book of geology for students in 3rd-6th grade that is presenting a full circle view on geology, creation, and history. The authors are experienced teachers and committed biblical creationists. Students will enjoy learning to investigate and assess geological phenomena that support the Genesis Flood scriptures. Colorful photos and easy organizational divisions help learning proceed quickly and easily. Another title teaching creationist geology in this series is "The Case of the Missing Mountain (9780890515938, $14.99)," by Kim Jones, which uses puzzles, games, and mystery solving skills to investigate Mount St. Helen's.

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Colo's Story
Nancy Roe Pimm, author
School Street Media
c/o Lerner Publishing Group
241 First Avenue North, Minneapolis, MN 55401-1607
9780984155446 $18.95

"Colo's Story: The Life of One Grand Gorilla" has been released in hardcover from Columbus Zoo Books for Young Readers as the third new title in the series, and it has been selected by the Junior Library Guild as a Spring 2011 selection of best books for youth this season. The paperback edition received a positive review from this source previously, and the hardback edition is equally noteworthy. The story of Colo, the first baby gorilla to be raised in captivity is told in prose and many expressive color and black and white photos. Young readers age 10 and up will enjoy this true story about a wonderful gorilla whose fame precedes her. In addition to the trade softcover (9780984155453, $8.95), an Ebook edition is also available (978984155460, $14.25).

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

How to See Faeries
John Matthews, author
Brian Froud, artist
115 West 18th Street, New York, NY 10011
9780810997509 $24.95

"How To See Faeries" is a lavish production, a partnership of creative artwork, paper puzzles, and foldouts for convenient faery viewing with piquant, pungent faery rhymes and riddles and lore. Written for the express purpose of opening the eyes and mind of the reader, "How To See Faeries" presents 80 wonderful pages with pop-up and foldout illustrations, making a stunning foray into the wonderful world of Faery. "How To See Faeries" may be directed more towards an adult audience, but it may indeed be enjoyed by children as well.

Soujon's Journey
Marlee Morgan
Indi Best
c/o Author
9780978924768, $10.00

As one faces adulthood, one comes to understand their place and understand the laws of the land. "Soujon's Journey" is a coming of age tale set in the fantastical city of Cyane, as Soujon travels to Sky Mountain, coming to understand her world of magic and her place in the world. "Soujon's Journey" is a fine pick for young adult fantasy readers, recommended.

The Folktale/Fairytale Shelf

The Goat-Faced Girl
Leah Marinsky Sharpe, author
Jane Marinsky, illustrator
David R. Godine
P.O. Box 450, Jaffrey, NH 03452
9781567923933 $16.95

"The Goat-Faced Girl: A Classic Italian Folktale" is a spunky retelling of a traditional Italian folktale with a new emphasis on self-reliance, especially for lazy would-be princesses. Recast with a lizard-sorceress, a shallow prince, and an indolent heroine who is serenely unaware of her troubling penchant to switch heads with a goat. All turns out for the best, with some surprising twists. "The Goat-Faced Girl" is a refreshing new take on a sly old tale, beautifully embellished with stellar illustrations of great imagination. "The Goat-Faced Girl" will appeal to pre-teenagers as well as a younger audience age 6 and up.

The Gardening Shelf

Kids in the Garden
Elizabeth McCorquodale
Black Dog Publishing Limited
10a Action Street, London WC1X 9NG, United Kingdom
9781906155926 $15.95

Kids in the Garden is a family-friendly, step-by-step guide to growing edible plants, rounded out with a smattering of tasty recipes to make use of the garden produce. Full color photographs on virtually every page illustrate the step-by-step instructions that amateur gardeners of all backgrounds can readily follow. In addition to guidelines for raising specific edible plants such as carrots, broad beans, raspberries, cucumbers, and potatoes, there is a detailed introductory section concerning general gardening matters like basic homemade compost, making a bird feeder, and protecting plants from pests in ways that don't involve pesticides (such as a simple plank of wood placed directly on damp soil as a slug trap - slugs are drawn to it can be simply picked up and sent away). Kids in the Garden is an eco-friendly way to get parents and children involved together in a creative, healthy, and educational activity, and highly recommended.

The Cookbook Shelf

The Kids' Multicultural Cookbook
Deanna F. Cook, author
Michael Kline, illustrator
c/o Ideals Books
2636 Elm Hill Pike, Suite 120, Nashville, TN 37214
9780824968182 $12.99

"The Kids' Multicultural Cookbook" is a global exploration of fun foods for kids to make. Divided into six sections, including introductions and basics in Lets Get Cooking, plus recipes for foods from Asia, Europe, Africa and the Middle East, the Americas, and South Pacific, "The Kids' Multicultural Cookbook" is a fun-filled rainbow of confections that are easy enough to be made by kids 8 and up with some adult supervision. Recipes are rated one, two or three spoons to show their complexity. Accessibility for young adventurous cooks is assisted by colorful illustrations, simple food preparation steps, plus added details about kids' lives in the country of the featured recipe, and also Cultural Clues and Food Funnies. Examples of recipes include Sweet Scones from Scotland, peanut butter soup from Ghana, Cowboy Steak from Argentina, and Tropical Fruit Sensation from the Society Islands, to name just a few. "The Kids' Multicultural Cookbook" is a wonderful way for kids to learn about different cultures by preparing and enjoying foods from many lands.

The Art Shelf

Dropping in on Renaissance Artists
Pamela Geiger Stephens, author
Jim McNeill, illustrator
Crystal Productions
PO Box 2159, Glenview, IL 60025-6159 1-800-255-8629
9781562906337 $15.95 book
9781562906573, $29.95 DVD / $41.00 book & DVD set

Dropping in on Renaissance Artists is part of Crystal Productions' excellent "Dropping in" series of children's picturebooks designed to introduce children to the history of classic artists and their amazing creations. The friendly avian mascot Puffer and a young art student named Polly learn about the lives and works of Michelangelo, Leonardo Da Vinci, and Raphael. In addition to the bright, simple images of Puffer and Polly's adventure, Dropping in on Renaissance Artists features full-page color reproductions of notable masterworks, including "Five Grotesque Heads", "Mona Lisa", "Pieta", "The Creation of Adam", "St. George and the Dragon", and "School of Athens". "If you drew a line from elbow to elbow and up both arms to the top of her head, you would see a triangle. This pose makes Mona Lisa look as if she is relaxed. Many photographs that are taken of people today have the same pose." A separate DVD adaptation of Dropping in on Renaissance Artists (20 min.) is also available, and makes an excellent addition to public school DVD libraries. The book and the DVD are available individually or as a set; both make superb educational and entertaining gifts especially for artistically talented young people.

The Activity Shelf

Snap Fashion Jewelry Studio
Jenna Land Free
Smart Lab
11120 NE 33rd Place, Suite 101, Bellevue, WA 98004
9781603800860 $22.99

Snap Fashion Jewelry Studio is a massive multi-part kit that young girls can use to create their own handmade plastic jewelry and fashion accessories. A colorful, softcover picturebook guides creative young minds ages seven and up to creating everything from flower rings to personalized necklaces to brightly pinned buttons and more. (Younger children, especially children under three years, should not play with the kit due to small plastic pieces posing a choking hazard). Making one's unique creations is as simple as snap, customize, and wear. The entire kit consists of a snap maker, 16 fabric circles, 12 jewels, ribbon, 5 bases, 2 rings, 25 snap domes plus backs, a transfer sheet, a connector, a tracing ring, a 5 mL bottle of glue, and of course the look book. Snap Fashion Jewelry Studio is especially ideal for babysitting, slumber parties, rainy (or snowy!) day fun, and stimulating creativity. Highly recommended.

Rock Star Scratch & Sketch
Vicki Fischer & Martha Day Zschock
Peter Pauper Press, Inc.
202 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10601
9781441304339, $12.99,

Written by Vicki Fischer and illustrated by Martha Day Zschock, for rock 'n' roll enthusiasts from 6 to 60, "Rock Star Scratch & Sketch" is an art activity book that explores the very special world of rock music by sketching the pictures, and scratching away the black coating to reveal colorful glitter and swirl patterns emerge. With its total of twenty scratch-off, twenty illustrated, and twenty sketch patches, "Rock Star Scratch & Sketch" offers hours of fun. It should be noted that all applicable safety standards were employed in the production of "Rock Star Scratch & Sketch". "Rock Star Scratch & Sketch" is especially recommended as a lengthy car trip entertainment or a rainy day indoor activity.

Safety Pin Bracelets
Kaitlyn Nichols
450 Lambert Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94306
9781591749325 $19.99

"Safety Pin Bracelets" is a craft manual for girls to help them create 10 easy-to follow bracelet designs, complete with supplies of safety pins, beads, metallic elastic cord, bracelet designs, and customizable design grids "Safety Pin Bracelets" is created by a publisher whose mission statement is the following: "Create wonderful things. Have fun. Be good." All goals are achieved with the help of simple instruction, clear photographs, tips & techniques, and much more. Ideal for girls ages 7-12, "Safety Pin Bracelets" will offer hours of constructive activity and fun resulting in a beautiful bracelet that increases self respect, pride, and outreaching friendships.

The Bilingual Shelf

Carnevale Italiano
Claudia Cerulli
Long Bridge Publishing
2875 Benjamin Ave, San Jose, CA 95124
9780984272327, $9.95,

The festival of Carnival is one that seems strange to outsiders, but is one that Italians hold dear. "Carnevale Italiano: An Introduction to One of Italy's Most Joyful Celebrations" is a kid's guide to the characters, history, food, and more that comes behind this celebration inspired the more known to Americans Mardi Gras. Presented in both Italian and English, "Carnevale Italiano" is a strong pick for anyone who wants to teach their children a bit more of the Italian culture.

The Little Weed Flower/ La florecita de la maleza
Vicky Whipple, author
Pamela Barcita, illustrator
Raven Tree Press
1400 Miller Parkway, McHenry, IL 60050
9781936299324 $16.95

"The Little Weed Flower/ La florecita de la maleza" is a charming bilingual flower fable that is a fine teaching book for children at pre-K to 3rd grade reading levels. Written in Spanish and English with each pair of pages presenting first the English then the Spanish text, "The Little Weed Flower" tells a tale reminiscent of The Ugly Duckling only with flowers for characters. The little weed flower dreams of belonging to a beautiful garden and being tended by the gentle gardener who talks to his flowers while he waters and cares for them. The other weeds and undesirables ridicule the little weed flower for her hopeless dream but she kept hoping the gardener would notice her. One day a very unusual hawk-like bird stopped to talk to the little weed flower and decided to help her come to the notice of the gardener by pointing at her with his wings. The gardener finally saw the little weed flower and called her "charming," while scooping her out of the ground to plant in his garden. Of course the other flowers were quite rude to the little weed flower, refusing to accept her, but she just kept remembering that the gardener had called her charming. The other flowers did not respect the gardener for his efforts and care as the little weed flower did. They did not realize what he did for them, watering them each day. When a day came that he was not there to water them, they listened to the little weed flower and tried to dig their roots down deep in the soil to find water until the gardener returned. finally the gardener returned, thanking the flowers for not giving up hope, as the little weed flower advised. The flowers finally understood they needed the gardener's love to have true beauty. The gardener made a wonderful home for the feathered friend in the garden, and in a sunset on a beautiful day, "Many say that, with hope in her heart, help along the way from a friend, and the love of the gardener, the little weed flower became the most charming flower in the garden (p. 30.)" This is a beautiful and touching story that begs to be treasured and reread lovingly many times. Its kind lessons can then sink deeply into young minds.

Lobo and the Rabbit Stew/ El lobo y el caldo de conejo
Marcia Schwartz, author
D. B. Campbell, illustrator
Raven Tree Press
1400 Miller Parkway, McHenry, IL 60050
9781936299003 $16.95

"Lobo and the Rabbit Stew/ El lobo y el caldo de conejo" is a comical, bilingual teaching tale for children pre-K through 3rd grade with strong similarities to The Three Little Pigs, in southwestern guise. Told in white text (English words) against dark blue picturesque backgrounds, the featured words in Spanish stand out in the tale because of their highlighted. yellow color. Children learn Spanish vocabulary words by the context of the story. Lobo howls at the almost- full moon and longs for a rabbit stew. Little Conejito (rabbit) must stay inside his home while his mother visits his grandmother to pick lettuce. He is instructed not to answer the door (la puerta) while Mama Rabbit is gone. El Senor Lobo tries to trick Conejito with a snake in a cage and by pouring sticky cactus molasses down the chimney, but Conejito is too smart for him. He traps el senor Lobo in his own molasses trap just as his mother comes home, leaving el senor Lobo to howl at the full moon while he plucks cactus thorns from his fur. Kids will love the comical, expressive illustrations that enliven the tale of "Lobo and the Rabbit Stew." It takes a wily little rabbit to outwit a hungry wolf, but Conejito is equal to the task!

Watch Pine Trees Grow/ Mira Como Crecen Los Pinos!
Theresa Shea, author
Eduardo Alaman, translator
Gareth Stevens Publishing
111 East 14th Street, Suite 349, New York, NY 10003
9781433948435 $22.60

"Watch Pine Trees Grow/ Mira Como Crecen Los Pinos!" is a bilingual, photo-illustrated book from the Watch Plants Grow series for readers pre-K level and up. Each opened page has a beautiful color photo of details described in text, faced by a simple sentence repeated in English and Spanish. At the end is a brief photo illustrated bilingual glossary. "Watch Pine Trees Grow/ Mira Como Crecen Los Pinos!" is a beginners' plant growth observation text for beginning nature studies and observations. Also recommended in this series is "Watch Grass Grow/ Mira Como Crece El Cesped! (9781433948312, $22.60)," by Kristen Rajczak, translated by Eduardo Alaman.

My Ducky Buddy/ Mi Amigo El Pato
Michael Smith, author
Octavia Olivo, illustrator
East West Discovery Press
P.O. Box 3585, Manhattan Beach, CA 920266
9780982167557 $12.95

"My Ducky Buddy/ Mi Amigo El Pato" is a bilingual picture book for children ages 2-5. Clever rhyming text is presented in English and in Spanish on adjoining pages, over brilliantly colored, original illustrations. Young children will love the buoyant, bubbly yellow duck who is a boy's "buddy in the bubbles, a friend with no troubles!" Taking the boy through bath time, drying, dressing, and bedtime, "My Ducky Buddy" provides the perfect companion to calming, routine evening transitions for healthy young children.

The Comix/Graphic Novel Shelf

Arthur Geisert
Enchanted Lion
20 Jay Street, Studio M-18, Brooklyn, NY 11201
9781592700981 $14.95

"Ice" is a scriptless, engraved tale about ingenious pigs who live on a desert island and sail a flying ship to bring home an iceberg for fun, entertainment, and coolness. Coolness is all about Ice and these pigs. Children will love tracking the imaginative detail of each colored illustration, showing the industrious pigs fashioning a full and happy life on their remote, desert island. "Ice" is a pleasure for all ages, and proves that the most fascinating of tales need not a single word to be told.

The Christian Studies Shelf

We Do Remember You
Steve Butler, author
Grace Mayfield, illustrator
Enheart Publishing
P.O. Box 620086, Charlotte, NC 28262
9780965489980 $12.99

"We Do Remember You" is a gentle Christian book written to help children, often siblings, create rituals or ways to honor and remember a child close to them who is no longer living. Gentle pastel illustrations show angel children who are in heaven, remembering the family members who loved them. Some suggested ritual activities to honor a beloved deceased child includes lighting a candle, making a prayer or special poem, planting a rose bush or special plant or tree, creating a memorial or creating a memory box, or holding a special gathering or prayer vigil. "We Do Remember" is very kid-friendly in its language and tone, and has received the Mom's Choice Award.

Care for Creation
Christy Baldwin, author
Shelly Draven, illustrator
Tribute Books
P.O. Box 95, Archbald, PA 18403
9780982256565 $16.95

"Care for Creation" is a Christian children's book about learning to be good stewards of the environment, teaching principles of recycling, home energy conservation, respecting nature, and taking responsibility for neighborhood clean-ups. Filled with modern rephrasings of Biblical quotations about human responsibility for stewardship and environmental care, "Care for Creation" is an inspirational textbook with many specific suggestions for actions children can take to help preserve and protect a clean environment and clean water. Many of the pictures and narrative passages are poetic and beautiful. At the end of the book is an Interactive Guide with further related suggested activities and discussion questions. "Care for Creation" is appropriate for children age 5 and up.

The Judaic Studies Shelf

I Keep Kosher
Tami G. Raubvogel & Rebecca Schwartz, authors
Tova Katz, illustrator
Hachai Publishing
Brooklyn, NY
9781929628520 $10.95

"I Keep Kosher" is a child's colorfully illustrated book about learning rules for keeping a kosher kitchen. A sister teaches her brother simple kosher rules while playing in her toy kitchen, such as "Milk and meat can never mix." So two sets of dishes are used for mil and for meat. Shopping at a kosher butcher for beef or chicken is also a good kosher practice. After eating meat, a kosher cook waits 6 hours before eating milk or cheese. If a fish has fins or scales, it is kosher .Fruits and vegetables are healthy kosher food. There are also special kosher sweets and treats that are marked with a kosher mark, which can be eaten in a kosher diet. All text rhymes, and the book ends with a handy list of the ABC's of Kosher... eating in a special way. "I Keep Kosher" is a delightful child's companion book that explains the basic rules for eating in a special way, or keeping kosher.

The Fiction Shelf

The Glamis Curse
Wade H. Nichols
Privately Published
9781452841786, $14.95

Macbeth's curse continues to live in today's world. "The Glamis Curse" tells of Michael and Judy, as they come across a descendent of Macbeth, who still faces the curse that his ancestors brought upon them. Michael and Judy seem to be his only hope, as Wade Nichols tells a story of coming of age and facing bullies and the challenges of life. "The Glamis Curse" is a fine pick for younger readers.

Stealing the Wild
Beth Hodder
Grizzly Ridge Publishing
PO Box 268, West Glacier, MT 59936
9780979396311, $11.95,

Away from civilization, there is still plenty of mystery to experience. "Stealing the Wild" follows 12 year old Jessie Scott as they face the curiosities in the forests that Jessie calls home. With her friends, she finds that she has the ability to get down to the truth of it all, as curios mysteries spill into her forests as people pass by. A fun and exciting read for younger readers, "Stealing the Wild" is a highly recommended pick.

A Boy and His Bot
Daniel H. Wilson
175 - 5th Avenue, New York NY 10010
9781599902807 $16.99

A BOY AND HIS BOT offers the fine story of an ordinary school field trip - until Code Lightfall spots a tiny metallic bee that leads him to explore the previously-unseen world of robots. There are dangers all around - and Code becomes trapped in robot land with only one (dangerous) path home. Kids who love robots and science fiction will find this an easily accessible read recommended for advanced elementary to early middle school grades.

Scholastic Inc.
557 Broadway, New York NY 10012

Lois Lowry's LIKE THE WILLOW TREE (9780545144698 $12.99) joins others in the 'Dear America' historical novel series: this one presenting the 'diary' of one Lydia Amelia Pierce, who finds herself orphaned at age eleven after a flu epidemic rages in 1918. Lydia's experience with an uncle who takes her to be raised in the Shaker community leads an independent girl to struggle with a different culture's values in this fine diary novel for advanced elementary school readers. Trent Reedy's WORDS IN THE DUST (9780545261258, $17.99) tells of an Afghani girl with a cleft lip who finds her life changed when American soldiers come to town, bringing the chance of an operation to fix her face. When a woman offers to teach her to read, Zulaikha knows her life will change entirely in this compelling story of a girl's cultural awakening. Michael Northrop's TRAPPED (9780545210126, $17.99) tells of a record-breaking blizzard that strikes and strands Scotty and seven kids at high school for a week. When the power goes out and the snow just gets higher, some difficult decisions must be made to survive in this riveting saga. Rachel Ward's NUMBERS: THE CHAOS (9780545242691, $17.99) tells of a boy who inherits his mother's ability to see the date of their death - and to feel it, as well. Adam's an orphan raised by his great-grandmother but rising waters force them to flee to London, an alien city where he comes to realize approaching disaster will kill millions. A riveting science fiction read for older teens makes for an original, compelling story. The McKissacks' CYBORG: THE SECOND BOOK OF THE CLONE CODES (9780439929851, $16.99) continues the Clone Codes science fiction adventure set in a universe governed by oppressive laws. Its search for violators of the Cyborg Act of 2013 drives Houston and his friend to become fugitives against all odds in this compelling story.

Knopf /Delacorte/ Dell/ Random House
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019

Alexandra Monir's TIMELESS (9780385738385, $16.99) tells of a family tragedy that forces Michele to move from Los Angeles to New York City, there to live with grandparents she's never met in a historic mansion. Her discovery of an ancestor's diary that has the power to send her back to 1910, when it was written, leads to romance and danger - and a double life in two worlds. An excellent timeslip novel emerges! Maurissa Guibord's WARPED (9780385738910, $16.99) tells of a strange unicorn tapestry that comes into Tessa's possession, bringing her strange vivid dreams of the past - and another life. When she pulls a loose thread from the tapestry she finds herself in the past, trying to correct its wrongs. Unless she can fix the past, fate will take a hand in damaging her life in this supernatural time-travel romance fantasy. Both will strongly appeal to high school teens interested in romance and time travel sagas.

The Self-Help Shelf

Frankie Stein Starts School
Lola M. Schaefer, author
Kevan Atteberry, illustrator
Marshall Cavendish
99 White Plains Road, Tarrytown, NJ 10591
9780761456568 $15.99

Winner of the Children's Choice award and the Mockingbird Award of Texas, "Frankie Stein Starts School" is a sprightly, spooky tale with a delicious twist. Frankie Stein is starting school at Miss Wart's Academy for Ghouls and Goblins, but there is one problem. He looks too clean-cut! How will he ever fit in and make friends! After all, Frankie, looked nothing like his scary Stein parents. Sure enough, at first the other little witch and goblin-like children reject him because of his blonde-haired, wide-eyed good looks. They tease him about his looks and call him "pretty boy." but Frankie has a surprise or two up his sleeve. Even though he doesn't look scary, he knows how to be scary. He can make gross, grotesque faces, for a start. He can color his face with chalk in art class to achieve "bone-chilling" effects. He can yelp coyote calls that are ear-shattering! Finally during science class, Frankie makes a potion that helps him grow two long, bloodcurdling fangs! finally Frankie's first day at school is over and he rushes home to tell his parents about it. When asked what he liked best, he says, "Friends... I made a lot of new frightening friends!" "Frankie Stein Starts School" is a great book for kids age 5 and up to teach about the joys and wonders of appreciating just being yourself. The spooky, exciting illustrations add great impact to the text in this charming tale.

Florence the Flamingo: A Tale of Pride
Felicia Law, author
Lilli Messina
Windmill Books
303 Park Avenue South, Suite #1280, New York, NY 10010
9781607549017 $22.80

"Florence the Flamingo: A Tale of Pride" is a new addition to the Animal Fair Values series. Written at a level 1 reading level and filled with luscious, colorful illustrations in shades of pink, purple, and blue (with earth tones for the drought sections), "Florence the Flamingo" is a perfect reality-checking self-awareness fable for children from pre-K through third grade. Florence the flamingo is very proud of her beauty. All she wants to do is gaze at herself in the water. Her fellow flock mates worry about her because she looks at herself so much she forgets to eat enough. One day their water hole begins to dry up and the flamingo flock decides to fly away for more fish in a better location. Not Florence, she stays gazing at herself in the dwindling pool until the salt crust on her legs and her weakness chain her to the drying pool. A band of hungry hyenas waits for her to weaken further, then they will eat her. Luckily for Florence, some of her fellow flamingos decide to fly back and rescue her. They peck away her salty ankle cuffs and help her to fly away. Moral: Don't worry too much about appearances, or good looks. Remember what matters is inside, and caring and relating to others. "Florence the Flamingo" is an attractive teaching book with a section at the end to help readers learn more about flamingos, about pride, and about vocabulary.

Big Brown Eyes
Naomi Connor
Author House
1660 Liberty Drive, Bloomington, IN 47403
9781449073312 $12.99

"Big Brown Eyes" is a great book for children who are discovering new things about themselves, experiencing normal changes of growing up. Filled with colorful portraits of friendly multi-racial and multi-abled children, "Big Brown Eyes" promotes positive self-images especially in kids who are undergoing uncertain changes, such as losing their teeth. "Big Brown Eyes" encourages children to explore themselves, starting with their eyes and facial expressions. There is no better tool towards increased self-acceptance than just such a book as "Big Brown Eyes."

The Music CD Shelf

What A Zoo!
Joanie Leeds and the Nightlights
c/o Waldmania! (publicity)
130 Maywood Drive, San Francisco, CA 94127

What A Zoo! is an upbeat children's music CD ideal for young listeners ages 2-9, featuring ten original songs and four covers by performer Joanie Leeds and her band, The Nightlights. Amazing animal friends are the recurring theme of this delightful music album that doesn't talk down to young people - even grown-ups may find it enjoyable! A choice pick for playing on car trips or rainy day fun, What A Zoo! is recommended for children's library music collections or simply as a family-friendly gift. The tracks are "All The Animals", "Mosquitoes", "Froggie Went A Courtin'" with Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, "Big Blue Whale", "Happy As a Clam", "Hummingbird", "Sea Cow", "Possum", "Tofurky Song", "If You Go", "Animals in Concert", "My Butterfly", "Pony Boy", and "Wimoweh". 37 min.

All I Want!
David Weinstone
Music for Aardvarks and Other Mammals
c/o Waldmania! (publicity)
130 Maywood Drive, San Francisco, CA 94127

All I Want! is a playful children's music CD; some of its musical performances are recognizable from Nick Jr. TV. Composer David Weinstone brings warmth and heart to the genre of family-friendly music with his upbeat, lively, tongue-in-cheek compositions perfect for playing at kids' parties, car trips, or rainy-day fun. The tracks are "Hello", "I Want a Puppy!", "Mighty Milo", "Beach Song", "Better Keep Your Eye on Me!", "Hey There Little Birdie", "Dance Song", "Bathtub Soup", "All I Want!", "Fishin' Song", "What a Surprise", "Count to Ten", "I'm a Clock", "Stroller Trouble", "I Can Touch the Sky", "Popcorn Tree", "TV", "Wait!" and "Goodbye".

Acoustic Dreamland
Putumayo Kids
c/o Putumayo World Music
411 Lafayette St., 4th floor, NY, NY 10003
SKG Publicity
55 Hiawatha Trail, Highland Park, IL 60035

Acoustic Dreamland is a soothing children's music CD of lullabies and gentle songs perfect for easing little ones to relaxation and sleep. Each track is by a different performer, from folk artist Lucy Kaplansky to Parent's Choice award-winner Victor Johnson; all are dreamy delight for adults as well as children to experience when winding down after a long, hard day. The tracks are "Dreamland", "Everything is Going to Be Alright", "Blue Sky", "You Can Close Your Eyes", "In the Land of Dreams", "Here with Me", "My Darling", "Tomorrow", "The Hour of Sleep", "My Father's Waltz", and "Next Time". 31 min.

Songs from the Science Frontier
Monty Harper
Monty Harper Productions
0970108192 $14.95

Songs from the Science Frontier is a delightful music CD for young listeners ages eight and up that not only entertains, but also stimulates interest in the purpose of science and the scientific method. An organic evolution of songwriter Monty Harper's "born to do science" program that he regularly hosts at the local library, Songs from the Science Frontier blends informal science education with a love for the funny and the funky. The result is a choice pick worth of the highest recommendation as a gift for young people, or as a contribution to public library children's music collections. The tracks are "Science Frontier" (2:47), "What is the Shape of the Molecule?" (3:20), "Acrocanthosaurus" (3:10), "Super Scientist" (3:25), "Microbe Hunter" (4:12), "Bat Man" (2:36), "Born to Do Science" (2:49), "My Molecular Eye" (2:47), "It's Not Fair" (3:39), "Wind Energy" (4:07), "Grain of Sand" (4:30), and "Ain't It Beautiful" (3:39).

Moona Luna: Pinata Party
Sandra Velasquez
Luchadora Records
c/o Beth Blenz-Clucas Publicity
5505 SW Illinois Street, Portland, OR 97221

Moona Luna: Pinata Party is a playful children's music CD brimming with upbeat, English/Spanish bilingual music created in the spirit of a lively outdoor party. Songwriter and mother Sandra Velasquez has condensed the joy and excitement of celebrating with children into musical form, in this wonderfully joyous "fiesta" album! The tracks are "Quieres Bailar?", "We''re Gonna Take a Trip (Vamos a Viajar)", "Brinca, Jump!", "Mama, No Me Quiero Dormir (Mama, I Don't Want to Sleep)", "Todas Las Comidas (All the Foods)", "Tomorrow's Another Day (Manana es Otro Dia)", "Don't Ever Give Up", "Hay Que Trabajar (We All Have to Work)", "Cantame Una Cancion (Sing Me a Sng)", "De Colores (All the Colors)", "Te Amo (I Love You)", and "Would You Like to Dance?".

Look Both Ways
ScribbleMonster & His Pals
The ScribbleBooks Company, Inc.
3000 Kathleen Court, Homewood, IL 60430

Loosely inspired by Sesame Street, Look Both Ways is a lively children's music CD filled with upbeat, catchy tunes. Kids join in on the singing in various tracks that encompass a musical smorgasbord ranging from guitars, ukelele, trombone and piano to percussive clinks, clanks, and violin thunks. Look Both Ways is a high-energy blast of pure fun, especially recommended for playing at children's parties. The tracks are "Sesame Street Theme", "Five People in my Family", "Good Morning, Mister Sun", "Clink, Clank", "What Babies Are Called", "Stop!", "I Want To Hold Your Ear", "Just Happy To Be Me", "Loud And Soft", "Thirty-Two Cracks In The Sidewalk", and "Someday, Little Children". 26 min.

The DVD Shelf

Barney: Musical Zoo
Hit Entertainment
Lionsgate (distribution)
c/o Andrea Blain Public Relations
9750 Crawford Avenue, Skokie, IL 60076

Barney: Musical Zoo (40 min.) is a playful, musical children's DVD starring the iconic, widely beloved purple dinosaur. In the episode "Riff's Musical Zoo", Barney and Riff engineer an amazing concert filled with sounds from wild animals like lions and elephants. Then BJ and Baby Bop join in the fun in the episodes "Special Skills" and "Rhythm"; everyone learns about the basics of rhythm and the joy of performing for others. Bonus features include an "Animal Sounds" match game and a Timmy Time episode "Timmy's Plane". Barney: Musical Zoo is a wholesome, family-friendly DVD, and a choice pick to educate and entertain young children. Also highly recommended is Lionsgate's newly released Thomas & Friends DVD, "Wobbly Wheels & Whistles" (48 min., $14.98).

The ABC Shelf

The ABCs of Yoga for Kids
Teresa Anne Power, author
Kathleen Rietz, illustrator
Stafford House Books
PO Box 291, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
9780982258705 $19.95

"The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" is a stellar, multiple-award-winning yoga alphabet book for kids ages 3-8. Recommended by famous mom and yoga practitioner Mariel Hemingway, "The ABCs of Yoga for Kids" presents simple verses with two or more animal or object yoga poses illustrated and described for each letter of the alphabet. The fun- colorful, uplifting text and illustrations make learning yoga poses for kids irresistible. To summarize the charm and holistic appeal of "The ABCs of Yoga," here is the definition given for the letter "y:" Yoga means "union"/ Of Breath, body and mind./ As you practice these poses,/ You will start to find/ A sense of calm and serenity,/ Building deep within you/ A strong and stable identity (p. 26)."

The Picturebook Shelf

Gift of the Magpie
Janeen Mason
Pelican Publishing Company
1000 Burmaster St., Gretna, LA 70053
9781589808614 $16.99

"Gift of the Magpie" is a vivid illustrated love story about two zany magpies named Max and Regina. Regina loves shoes, and shiny unusual items, even though food is more important. Max wants to create a nest and home for her and he keeps trying to please her with unlikely shoe gifts. The incredibly imaginative, outside-the-lines, bright pink and black and white art work keeps this story line popping. What a fabulous story for Valentine's Day! Kids age 4 and up will adore every page and every twist and kink in story and art.

Quick, Slow, Mango!
Anik McGrory
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
9781599902425 $16.99

"Quick, Slow, Mango!" is a charming children's illustrated animal tale about a very slow little elephant named Kidogo and his very quick monkey friend, PolePole. The contrast between savoring every moment's experience, unencumbered by the pressure of deadline awareness with fast, scrambling, blurry, hurry-up motions such as PolePole picking mangos for breakfast is drawn out in text and illustration. The delicate water-color and pencil illustrations tell large parts of the story in themselves, like a sophisticated, special comic strip. "Quick, Slow, Mango!" is all about joyously finding the middle road and managing to navigate between the temptations of extremes to enjoy a very pleasant life. There certainly is value in learning to take one's time. "Quick, Slow, Mango!" uses Kiswahili words to teach concepts, such as kidogo (little), pole, pole (slowly, slowly), and chapu, chapu (hurry, hurry!). "Quick, Slow, Mango!" is perfect for children ages 3-7.

Roly-Poly Egg
Kali Stileman
Tiger Tales
5 River Road, Suite 128, Wilton, CT 06897
9781589258525 $12.95

"Roly-Poly Egg" is a rainbow-infused children's springtime tale whose bright, imaginative illustrations and telling text marry perfectly. Children are encouraged to trace the dotted line that marks the path that the (perfect) roly-poly egg follows in its exciting journey to the final page! The adorable bright orange bird mother, Splotch, follows her perfect spotted egg down tree branches, down a giraffe's neck, under a kicking zebra in a meadow, towards a hungry crocodile in a pond, into an elephant's trunk, and finally up into the branches of the monkey tree where Madison Monkey and her friends catch it and return it carefully to Splotch. The final exciting page contains the surprise conclusion, guess! The perfect egg starts to crack! Children will adore opening the fold-out egg to find the baby Splotch hatchling on the dramatic last page. "Roly-Poly Egg" is perfect for children ages 3-7, a fabulous Easter or springtime gift book.

The Little Frog Learns the Golden Rule
Crista R. Stewart
Tate Publishing
127 E. Trade Canter Terrace, Mustang, OK 73064
9781616637644 $9.99

"The Little Frog Learns the Golden Rule" is a Christian-themed picture book from the Frog series about learning to live the Golden Rule, values, virtues, and the meaning of friendship. "Frog" stands for Fully Relying on God in this imaginative series. Little Frog, who is missing one leg, suffers from tormenting attention from other mean frogs. His human friend and companion, Chase tries to help him by teaching him about the Golden Rule, and listening to him and praying with him. Chase also ;is different from other children because he is missing an arm. The two friends share thoughts and experiences and Chase gives Little Frog a gold piece to help him remember the meaning of the Golden Rule. Little Frog has the opportunity to enact his faith when he decides to rescue Saul, one of the frogs who tormented and teased him. Even more important, although he does not want to, Little Frog forgives Saul what he has done. This opens the way for them to form a new friendship and build a new beginning. "The Little Frog Learns the Golden Rule" is a very deep, spiritual handbook that children will instinctively relate to and understand. A free audio digital book download of "The Little Frog Learns the Golden Rule" can be obtained following instructions to enter the coupon code in each book at

Chee the Flea and the Fabulous Zee Family Flea Circus
Alan Shue, author
Elisa Wilson, illustrator
Bug Rhymes Books
PO Box 211, East Olympia, WA 98540
9780984568703 $5.99

"Chee the Flea and the Fabulous Zee Family Flea Circus" is a brilliantly color illustrated book with rhyming text about marvelous flea circus that all live amicably on a dog named Daniel. Kids ages 3-8 will love the silly names with "ee", "oo" and "ay" sounds and especially the jewel-toned colorful illustrations. Imagination abounds in "Chee the Flea" and originality and wealth of detail make this child's book a very fun adventure.

Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes
Larry Peterson
Tribute Books
Po Box 95, Archbald, PA 18403
9780982256572 $16.95

"Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes" is a humorous attempt to show a child that his worst fears about being teased and rejected for being different may be nonexistent outside of his dreams. Willie Wiggles is a boy with a handicap, he slips and slides instead of walking. But he has a pair of unusual shoes that will help him not slip. Unfortunately he thinks they are stupid, ugly shoes and he imagines the worst - that all his friends and teachers and even his mother will laugh at him if he wears them. Luckily, Willie wakes up from his bad dream and finds when he really wears his shoes to school, no one laughs. Colorful, zany illustrations help make "Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes" a direct hit with kids ages 6-10.

Big Wolf & Little Wolf, Such a Beautiful Orange!
Nadine Brun-Cosme, author
Olivier Tallec, illustrator
Enchanted Lion Books
20 Jay Street, Studio M-18, Brooklyn, NY 11201
9781592701063 $16.95

"Big Wolf & Little Wolf, Such a Beautiful Orange!" is third in the series of Big Wolf and Little Wolf books by the talented author/illustrator duo. The two earlier titles, "Big Wolf and Little Wolf" and "Big Wolf and Little Wolf, The Leaf that Wouldn't Fall," were awarded a Batchelder Honor Book and starred reviews respectively. You don't need to read all three books in the series to enjoy "Big Wolf & Little Wolf, Such a Beautiful Orange," but who wouldn't want to? Once again the perfect union between a sensitive, nuanced tale's text and the contrasting vibrance of the scintillating paintings/illustrations makes the impact of the whole experience of "Such a Beautiful Orange!" a feast for the mind. In this tale, there is a separation between Big Wolf and Little Wolf, plus the exploration of an urban setting, with some accompanying darkness and fears. The real issue is the test of the relationship between Big Wolf and Little Wolf, and what it really means to both of them. Children and adults will love "Big Wolf & Little Wolf, Such a Beautiful Orange!" Its authenticity encourages the spirit to stretch and grow, once again.

Scholastic Inc.
557 Broadway, New York NY 10012

Karen Beaumont's SHOE-LA-LA! (9780545067058, $16.99) receives illustrations by LeUyen Pham and tells of four girls who just love to shop - especially for shoes! They try on all shoes but don't find anything attractive - until they decide to take matters into their own hands with feathers, glitter and some imagination. A whimsical story of creative crafting emerges. Pascal Lemaitre and Kate McMullan's BULLDOG'S BIG DAY (9780545171557, $16.99) tells of Bulldog's search for a new job, cookies in hand. His visits to friends who have different careers offer many possibilities but he must find the job right for him in this fine tale of a jog search. Mark Teague's LA RUE ACROSS AMERICA: POSTCARDS FROM THE VACATION (9780439915021, $16.99) tells of a dog's cross-country travel that is being ruined because of the cats who have gone along. Mrs. LaRue is too kind-hearted to complain - so dog Ike decides to write the letter requesting the cat owner send bus far to return the cats to Snort City in this whimsical, fun story. Janet A. Holmes and Jonathan Bentley's HAVE YOU SEEN DUCK? (9780545224888, $8.99) provides a very easy reader telling of a boy's lost stuffed duck toy. His reflection on Duck's special qualities lends to a positive, involving story. Derek Anderson's STORY COUNTY: HERE WE COME! (9780545168441, $16.99) tells of an unusual farm where the farmer and his animals paint the barn in rainbow colors, plant jelly beans, and make a pretty scarecrow for their new farm. What else could a farm wish for? This is a fine story of friendship and discovery. Susan Milord's HAPPY 100TH DAY! (9780439882811, $16.99) tells of Graham, who doesn't really like school or reading - and isn't interested in his teacher's excitement over the 100th Day of School - until he realizes his birthday falls on the same date. Mary Newell DePalma's bright drawings lend to a fine, inviting story.

Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019

Devon Kinch's PRETTY PENNY SETS UP SHOP (9780375867354, $16.99) tells how Penny is learning to become penny-wise in the process of throwing a surprise birthday party for her grandma. Her pet pig helps her earn money for the celebration in this whimsical survey of financial reality. Pam Smallcomb and Robert Weinstock's I'M NOT (9780375861154, $15.99) tells of crocodile Evelyn, who is a lot of things - and her hippo friend, who is not any of these things. Despite their differences the two friends find many things to love about each other in this outstanding story of friendship attractors.

Tricycle Press
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019

Poems by Betsy Franco accompany lively and fun drawings by Michael Wertz in A DAZZLING DISPLAY OF DOGS (9781582463438, $16.99), offering over thirty visual poems celebrating all kinds of dogs and their antics. This collection includes a range of poetic forms and breeds, making for an excellent pick for any collection seeking an early introduction to poetry. Melita Morales' JAM & HONEY (9781582462998, $15.99) receives fine drawings by Laura J. Bryant as it tells of a girl and a bee in a berry patch who find they can share to get what they need. The result is a gentle story of a girl's initial fear of bees and how she overcomes it. Elizabeth Rusch's FOR THE LOVE OF MUSIC: THE REMARKABLE STORY OF MARIA ANNA MOZART (9781582463261, $16.99) receives fine paintings by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher as it presents the biography of Maria Anna Mozart, who was considered one of Europe's finest pianists by the time she was twelve. Her famous brother overshadowed her but she too was a musical prodigy - and the siblings toured Europe together to much acclaim. Actual letters written by the Mozart family offers a fine real story of Maria Anna's many achievements - and why she faded to obscurity while her brother maintained fame.

Books in Series

Sparklers: Out and About
Katie Dicker
Black Rabbit Books
P.O. Box 3263
123 South Broad Street, Mankato, MN 56002
9781842346105 $24.25

"Woods" is a beautifully photo-illustrated themed nature book that encourages young children to have fun exploring outdoor settings. "Woods" uses color photos and large balloon captions to pique interest in natural environments. This series by Katie Dicker is titled "Sparklers" because it is designed to stimulate the young child, kindergarten age and up, to continue extended learning in transition from a home to a school environment. Instructions to adults to help children make the most of reading times are given in the section titled Note for Adults, along with a variety of suggested learning activities related to the topics of each chapter. "Woods" has especially detailed colored pictures of leaves, animals and birds and insects, and many different woodlands settings. Other books in the outstanding "Sparklers: Out and About" series by the same author that is also highly recommended are "Park (9781842346112, $24.25)," "Beach (9781842346129, $24.25)," and "Garden (9781842346136, $24.25)."

Henry and Hala Build a Haiku
Nadia Higgins, author
Brian Caleb Dumm, illustrator
Norwood House Press
P.O. Box 316598, Chicago, IL 60631
9781599534350 $18.95

"Henry and Hala Build a Haiku: Poetry Builders" is part of the Poetry Builders series using a picture book format to instruct students in grades 2-4 in the how-to's of creating poetry in specific forms. Fun approaches to writing haiku poetry are described along with specific steps that describe a good creative and refining process. Kids will enjoy the "zing" of creating a good haiku and will clamor for more. "Henry and Hala Build a Haiku" is complete with a glossary and a list of resources for budding haiku authors. Also recommended titles in this Poetry Builder series are the following: "Sophie and Sadie Build a Sonnet" by Amanda St. John and Luanne Marten, (978159934404, $18.95), "Luke and Leo Build a Limerick," by Marybeth Mataya and Ilene Richard, (9781599534367, $18.95), "Connor and Clara Build a Concrete Poem," by Megan Atwood and Reginald Butler, (9781599534343, $18.95), "Nina and Nolan Build a Nonsense Poem," by Lisa Bullard and Patrick Girouard, (9781599534374, $18.95), "Penelope and Pip Build a Prose Poem," by Pete Heiden, illustrated by Amy Huntington, (9781599534381, $18.95), "Rena and Rio Build a Rhyme," by Pamela Hall, illustrated by Cary Pillo, (9781599534398, $18.95), and"Ana and Adam Build an Acrostic," by Victoria Peterson-Hilleque, illustrated by Winifred Barnum-Newman, (9781599534336, $18.95).

World Heritage: Protecting Earth's History
Brendan and Debbie Gallagher
Black Rabbit Books/ Smart Apple Media Imprint
P.O. Box 3263, Mankato, MN 56002
9781599205786 $28.50 (List); $19.95 (School/Library)

This series presents information on 78 of the United Nations' World Heritage sites, describing the sites and explaining their value and need for special protection for the future of human history on earth. Specific threats and challenges to the sites are described and ways of ameliorating them are explored or suggested. "Protecting Earth's History" includes information on Canaima National Park in Venezuela, Dinosaur Provincial Park in Canada, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park in Hawaii, Vredefort Dome in South Africa, West Norwegian Fjords in Norway, and more. Each site is pictured, described, and located with a fact file map. A timeline explains its history, and a glossary helps with word definitions. Special key facts are highlighted, and important issues facing the site in terms of protection for world heritage are listed. The series provides an exciting window on the world for students grades 5 and up. Titles also recommended in this series by the same authors include "Protecting Ancient Heritage" (9781599205779, $19.95), "Protecting Human Masterpieces" (9781599205809, $19.95), "Protecting the Human Story" (9781599205816, $19.95), and "Protecting Threatened Animals" (9781599205823, $19.95).

Global Issues: Globalization
Harriet McGregor
Rosen Publishing Group
29 East 21st Street, New York, NY 10010
9781448818785 $26.50

"Globalization" is an educational hard cover book in a series on Global Issues for students at 6th grade levels and up. Illustrated with color photographs and complete with a glossary at the end, "Globalization" presents chapters on the history, definition, causes, impact, and responses to globalization in addition to information on the role of the media and the future of globalization. Further information and web sites are also suggested at the book's end. Highlighted paragraphs present pertinent facts and bits of information and history in brief, easy to assimilate sections. "Globalization" is an excellent educational resource for students age 12 and up. Other titles also recommended in this series include "Human Trafficking Around the World (by Kaye Stearman, 9781448818792)," "Refugees (by Cath Senker, 9781448818808)," "Terrorism (by Alex Woolf, 9781448818815)," "AIDS and HIV (by Katie Dicker, 9781448818761)," and "Fundamentalism (by Sean Connolly, 9781448818778)".

Heather Kissock
Weigl Publishers Inc.
350 5th Avenue, 59th Floor, New York, NY 100118
9781605969886 $17.99

"Comanche" is a beautifully photo-illustrated title from Weigl Publishers' American Indian Art and Culture series for young readers grades 2-4. Based on the national Council for Social Studies curriculum standards, Comanche culture exploration is presented in chapters on the people, homes, clothing, hunting and gathering, tools, nomadic lifestyle, music and dance, art, and a Comanche folk tale retelling of The Release of the Bison. Additional fun learning features include suggested activities (making a drum and mallet), website connections, and glossary and index. "Comanche" is filled with beautiful color photographs of clothing made of animal skins decorated with beadwork, historic black and white photographs of Comanches, and more. Students will find their interest in Native American cultural studies ignited by this series and this title. Also recommended in this series are the following titles: "Apache (9781605969916, $17.99)," by Heather Kissock and Jordan McGill, "Tigua (978160969824, $17.99)," by Heather Kissock and Jordan McGill, "Cherokee (9781605969947, $17.99)," by Heather Kissock and Rachel Small, and "Caddo (9781605969794, $17.99)," by Heather Kissock and Rachel Small.

Seasons: Fall
Judy Wearing
Weigl Publishers Inc.
350 5th Avenue, 59th Floor, New York, NY 10118
9781616900441 $17.99

"Fall" is a title in Weigl Publishers' World of Wonder Seasons series for young readers grades 2-4. Filled with colorful photographs of brilliant scenes from autumn, "Fall" defines characteristics of the season, presents information about fall in different geographical locations on the globe, explores animal behavior and leaves' changing colors, and describes common fall holidays such as Thanksgiving and Halloween as well as fall foods, like pumpkin, as in pie. A learning activity about fall colors is suggested, and websites are listed to find out more about fall. There is also a glossary and index at the end of the book. "Fall" is a good seasonal observation beginners' book for the WOW series. Also recommended in this series are the following titles: "Winter (9781616900458, $17.99), by Lauren Diemer, "Spring (9781616900465, $17.99)," by Annalise Bekkering, and "Summer (9781616900472, $17.99)," by Nick Winnick.

350 - 5th Avenue, 59th Floor, New York NY 10118
$19.95 each

Kids in grades 3-6 - particularly Grade 4 - will appreciate the 32-page 'Connections' titles, which pair vivid color covers and contemporary photos with lively subjects in science to grab attention and educate. These new Connections releases are top picks highly recommended for any general elementary-level library, each offering introductions suitable for either reports or leisure browsing. Richard Spilsbury's DEEP SEA EXPLORATION (9780778798934) covers the science of shipwrecks, strange ocean creatures, and underwater geography and pairs bright, eye-catching color photos with exciting science insights. Angela Royston's HEROES OF MEDICINE AND THEIR DISCOVERIES (9780778798972) surveys inventions of medicine and how many an accident resulted in an important discovery. From why nobody believed that germs were real to how once-deadly diseases were eradicated, this is a fine read on medical history. Chris Oxlade's INVENTORS' SECRET SCRAPBOOK (9780778799092) offers a step-by-step guide to the invention process and follows inventions to create lightbulbs, phones and planes - and even the Internet. Chapters discuss patents, the process of inspiration, and more. Paul mason's RAINFOREST RESEARCH JOURNAL (9780778799030) examines amazing rainforest animals from rare pink river dolphins to man-eating fish. The journal format lends excitement and first-person interest to the saga. Anita Ganeri's RECORD-BREAKING EARTH (9780778799085) considers the Earth's geography and record-breaking events, from which lake is the highest to which volcano erupts more than others. Sarah Levete's SCIENCE FACT OR FICTION? YOU DECIDE (9780778798958) surveys popular mysteries of science, from Bigfoot and the potentials for time travel to alien invasions. Rumors are distinguished from reality using sidebars of facts and inviting, easy dialogue. Anna Claybourne's SICK AT SEA? CURE IT OR CUT IT OFF! (9780778799016) provides medical highlights and facts - and some curious cures that can treat dreadful diseases at sea. From fever and malaria to lancing a boil, this is packed with many medical insights kinds will find both gruesome and fascinating. Angela Royston's SPACE BLOG (9780778799108) offers kids a virtual trip to outer space, introducing the solar system through bright sidebars of information, science and 'space tips' through a first-person 'blog' of experience from a space-exploring astronaut's perspective. Alison Hawes' WATER WISE! (9780778799047) surveys facts about the world's limited water resources, plus science on how to become more water wise and how to conserve water. Louise Spilsbury's COASTAL TREASURE HUNTER (9780778799078) offers a 'you are there' exploration of coastal sights, from snail fossils the size of monster truck tires to mud-hunting. From how to clean shells to understanding and looking for curious discoveries, this is packed with intriguing options for young seashore hunters. All are highly recommended science collection picks!

James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Diane C. Donovan, Editor
Midwest Book Review
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Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937

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