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Children's Bookwatch

Volume 24, Number 9 September 2014 Home | CBW Index

Table of Contents

Donovan's Bookshelf Social Issues Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf
ABC Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf Board Book Shelf
Easy Reader Shelf Fiction Shelf Poetry Shelf
Health/Medicine Shelf Picturebook Shelf Math Shelf
World History Shelf Cookbook Shelf Biography Shelf
Multimedia Shelf Audiobook Shelf Music CD Shelf
DVD Shelf Activity Shelf Needlecraft Shelf
Folktale/Fairytale Shelf Environmental Shelf Christian Shelf
Judaic Shelf Sports Shelf Art Shelf
Books in Series    

Donovan's Bookshelf

Uncovered in Istanbul
Melissa Mahle & Kathryn Dennis
Spygirls Press
P.O. Box 1537
Fairfax, VA 22038
9780985227371 196 Pages
Paperback $8.99/ebook $5.99

Relatively few young adult mystery reads are as steeped in a sense of non-Western place and culture as Uncovered in Istanbul: in fact, most adult mysteries don't come with such an immersion - and it's a shame. Turkey's sights, sounds and smells are exceptionally vivid here and are the perfect exotic backdrop to support a feisty female protagonist in her quest for the truth.

Young adult readers ages 9-13 (especially those familiar with Book One of the 'Anatolia Steppe' series) are in for a treat with Uncovered in Istanbul, where an old diary purchased in an Istanbul bazaar involves two teens who concurrently investigate a mysterious legend, an assassination plot, and Ana's father's secret life.

That's a lot of secrets for one saga, and without proper handling, such a story line could become overly complex and confusing; especially for young adults. But these potential problems aren't evident in Uncovered in Istanbul, which cements its story with a first-person perspective that sets forth a premise that unifies the story's contention that rules are "...only suggestions...The key is to know when and how to bend them."

A prologue of past events (in 1789) neatly sets the stage for events of present-day Istanbul, where Ana and Gordy face down pirates, sultans, ambushes, and an invitation to give up the mystery they're investigating: "I'm angry now. It's my journal and a clue to Aimee's mystery. I most definitely am not getting rid of it."

One wouldn't expect a dose of humor to permeate such a serious plot, but it's here and offers realistic comic relief to the nonstop adventure: "Coming home in a police car is never good. It is particularly bad when home is a five-star hotel and the welcoming committee is hotel security, one of the guards from the museum, and a brigade of chauffeurs. And Mom."

Ana is charged with a lot of tasks: solving a mystery, investigating her own father (who is playing dead), and even saving Gordy when forces involve them in a dangerous cat-and-mouse game.

Through it all the legend of a young French girl lost at sea weaves a secret begging to be released into a vivid story of traps, danger, and a key that unifies all.

This is cemented by the brash, sassy, action-oriented protagonist of Anatolia Steppe (it's so satisfying to see a spunky, take-charge protagonist in a young adult mystery!) whose personal commitment and determination fuel a fast-paced, involving mystery that hovers on elements of hope and despair right up to the end.

A Simple Idea to Empower Kids
Kathleen Boucher
Balboa Press Publisher
1663 Liberty Drive, Bloomington, IN 47403
9781452591421 (sc) $13.95
9781452591438 (e) $3.99, 25 Pages px

A Simple Idea to Empower Kids will reach young readers ages 8-12 with the same powerful goal of the 'Teens' version of the book: to empower kids based on three simple principles of love, choice and belief.

This book provides a far simpler format to impart the message to a younger age group, offering reader-friendly, simple drawings paired with uncomplicated admonitions that encourage kids to recognize how love powers the planet. It's also carefully designed to be easily memorized so that even a poor child receiving a parental read-aloud from a borrowed book can quickly and easily remember its message of hope and strength.

It starts with a basic perception ("From the beginning of time until the end of time there will only be one of you on Earth. Only one! This means you are very special exactly as you are right now.") and builds upon this basic tenant. This message is supported by ideas of 'giving permission', 'believing in yourself', and the inherent power in everyone to choose their thoughts and, conversely, their reactions to life's slings and arrows.

So you've heard all this before? Not for this age group, though: and that's where A Simple Idea to Empower Kids makes all the difference. It adopts an uncomplicated approach to empowerment and presents it to a much younger age group than is usual for such ideals.

In making the concept available to those with versatile, growing minds, it's more likely to take root at an early age; there to grow into a strategy for interacting with the world.

Kid-friendly drawings pair with simple, kid-accessible admonitions to make for a valuable, surprisingly simple lesson recommended for not just kids, but all ages.

My Kiss Won't Miss
Lesley Dahlseng
WhetWord Press, LLC
PO Box 492
Alexandria, MN 56308
9780615987040 $17.99 32 Pages =0

My Kiss Won't Miss is an excellent picture book for pre-school to kindergarten readers. It offers the dilemma of a mother whose young son doesn't just enjoy hiding by day, but sneaks out of bed at night to play hide-and-seek. The mother's idea is that her love will follow him wherever he goes; even when she can't see or find him - and it's part of a greater idea that God's love follows the same path.

Mirela Tufan provides vivid, compelling color illustrations throughout the story and her colors and hues are compelling and lovely enhancements of the story line. There are streams with swans, dreamscapes with lambs, rafts on water with cozy coves...all the trappings of dream fantasy worlds where a mother's love embraces a wayward son.

The rhyme is wonderful, the message simple, and the delivery was very easy to understand, all wrapped up with the lovely supportive illustrations. The conclusion seems somewhat abrupt for a bedtime story centering on a mother's love that only in the last few pages incorporates the quote from Romans: "Nothing in all creation, will separate us from the love of God that is in Jesus Christ", but ultimately, it worked - and, very nicely, by pairing the familiar images of a loving mother who sees all and gives unconditional love with that of the wider concept of a God who does the same, the very young preschooler will receive an introduction to the concept based on something he may already be very familiar with.

Christian families seeking a strong starting point for relating God to a young child's experience will thus find My Kiss Won't Miss an excellent choice.

Thomas Holland and the Prophecy of Elfhaven
K. M. Doherty
Wizard's Mark Press
27 Ash Street, Dover, NH 03820
9780991572007 346 Pages
$9.99 (Paperback) $3.99 (eBook - Kindle & Nook)

Thomas Holland and the Prophecy of Elfhaven is a fantasy for young adult to adult audiences, and begins when a boy who does not believe in the supernatural discovers that he's the key prophecy in a universe run by magic: a universe Tom's mother and her team of scientists have unwittingly accessed through their experiments.

It's a world of impossible fantasy housing trolls, ogres, wizards and magic: a world where Tom and his robot Chloe clearly don't belong. But in a world run by enchantment they are deemed not only magical themselves, but the possible answer to a universe headed toward a deadly war that will destroy everything.

Tom makes friends in Elfhaven, but even his growing connections there can't guarantee he'll be able to single-handedly avert disaster. It will take a lot more than either fairy magic or technology to halt the relentless progress of an impossible war machine.
Although all the trappings of the usual fantasy seem to be here (a cast of magical characters, the specter of war, a lad just coming into his powers who finds his belief system tested), what lends a satisfyingly different feel to Thomas Holland and the Prophecy of Elfhaven is its attention to detail. Much like author K. M. Doherty, Tom is a budding young engineer (as evidenced by his creation, Chloe), and he has a vested interest in believing in the powers of technology over magic.

Furthermore, his high-tech world is cemented by personal experimentation and a solid focus on hard science: elements that don't exist in the world of magic and which, as a result, lend him a distinct advantage. The difference between his inventor mindset and his mother's scientific mindset creates an unusual bond of understanding between them: a bond that also will be tested in the course of events that play out between both worlds.

As Tom receives basic lessons on magic and incantation, the power of visualization, and prophecy, he begins to truly come into the extent of his own powers, which straddle two very different universes and two very different realities.

Comic relief permeates part of the story line and is often an unexpected and pleasing diversion: "See, this is what I was talking about. No one listens to me. I'm just a lowly prince, I guess. They said they would follow my orders, but NOOOO!" The prince clenched his teeth, drew his sword and dashed off after them. Tom choked back a laugh as he fell in line behind him.", but that's just one of the devices that sets Thomas Holland and the Prophecy of Elfhaven apart from competitors.

Even romance takes a light bow towards the end, which offers an epilogue promising further adventures from Tom and his clan.

New friendships, new worlds, and new realities: all this is packed in a satisfyingly revealing adventure that will keep all ages involved in a fantasy filled with both resolutions and new beginnings.

The Magic of Friendship
Subhash Kommuru
Kommuru Books
5816 Amy Drive, Edina MN 55436
9780990317814 $7.99 40 Pages

Buy from B&N:
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When it comes to stories about friendship, children's picture book literature is replete with tales of boys and girls who form mutually beneficial relationships; but The Magic of Friendship aims for something more and stands above most others in pairing vivid, colorful animal drawings (by Arul Anugragh Ross) with a narrative that at first seems predictable, but offers some satisfying differences.

Chotu's father is captain of a migratory flight of geese that makes its journey across central India, heading south for the winter. They are free to fly any route they choose - except over the huge Taboda Forest, home of Babbar, a fierce tiger who frightens every animal in India.

Why should a bird fear a land animal? Because Babbar's roar is so strong, it once brought down an entire flock of birds with its force. Only one bird made it out (Chotu's father) and so no bird has since dared fly over Babbar's forest.

There's no denying the authenticity of Chotu's father's own experience, but as Captain wisely observes, Babbar can have anything he wants except the one thing he truly desires: happiness.

It's also time for Kojagiri, a nighttime festival where animals gather together to play. From a funny entertainer donkey (reminiscent of Donkey in Shrek) to an owl who likes to pull pranks by threatening Babbar's appearance, even Babbar can hear the amusements and laughter, albeit from afar. The celebration offers amazing examples of how serious creatures can play and it sparks his longing for friends. But how can he have friends when everyone fears him?

When the owl again announces Babbar's presence, the animals believe he's joking... but this time it's real. Donkey Hasmukah falls over in a faint and awakens to find the fierce tiger's right over him. He is doomed...or, is he?

When Hasmukah discovers Babbar simply wants some tips on how to make creatures laugh, he in turn asks for lessons in ferocity - and so an unusual friendship begins. The lessons go on for days, with few results for either animal. Will they fail in their goals to change?

It takes a wise old bird's observation to point out the real value of friendship and its world-changing potentials in this winning, feel-good story perfect for read-aloud or young picture book readers.

The Social Issues Shelf

Little Jimmy Says, "Same Is Lame"
Jimmy Vee, author
Mike Motz, illustrator
Allen J. Venezio, editor
Atlas Press
3718 Avalon Park East Boulevard, Orlando, FL 32828
c/o Smith Publicity
9780985478223, $17.99,

Little Jimmy Says, "Same Is Lame" is an exciting motivational book for children age 4 and up that promotes positive self image development among all different kinds of children through the concept of 'celebrate your uniqueness,' or "same is lame." The author refers to himself as Little Jimmy because he is only five feet tall, nicknamed the Five Foot High Marketing Guy by friends everywhere. Embellished by Barnum & Bailey circus signage and hyperbole, Little Jimmy Says, "Same Is Lame" is all about learning to enjoy being different. The exciting, rhyming narrative is complemented by the posh, colorful dream illustrations. One great example of the invigorating language is the following section on dealing with differences like scars or birthmarks: "Some people have birthmarks or scars on their face./ It makes them self-conscious and feel out of place./ But if they saw what I see, they would feel no disgrace,/ and realize a scar is not something to waste./ I'd show it with confidence, tell my story with pride,/ And everyone would know I have nothing to hide./ I'd empower other people to be who they are./ Who knew so much good could come just from a scar?" The accompanying illustrations show a boy with a facial birthmark or scar feeling left out, alone and different, who then writes a successful book about his experiences called "How to Leave Your Mark on the World!" So Little Jimmy encourages kids to embrace their differences, realizing that being unique is a gift to be explored and encouraged. The book ends with a page of unfilled blanks titled What's Unique About You. All profits from the sale of Little Jimmy Says, "Same Is Lame" go to the Same Is Lame Foundation project, a charity for children. More information is available at,

Boss No More
Estelle Meens, author/illustrator
Magination Press
c/o American Psychological Association
750 First St. NE, Washington, DC 20002
9781433816413, $14.95,

"Boss No More" is a kids' version of learning ways to counteract bossing behavior, interior and exterior. Lucas is a boy who tries to control others and win friends' support by being bossy and critical of his peers. This finally results in him feeling left out and alone, without friends. His mother listens to his description of the problems, and tells him he is not being nice to others, or fair. Lucas decides to make some changes, and presents some handmade positive portraits of each of his friends as gifts at school the next day. A special Note to Parents and Caregivers by Tammy Hughes, PhD., gives further suggestions to adults about ways to encourage positive growth and social interactions among children. The narrative of "Boss No More" is deftly illustrated with pastel washed pictures that tell stories in themselves in this excellent resource for children ages 4-6.

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

The Slug
Elise Gravel
Tundra Books
75 Sherbourne Street, 5th floor
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5A 2P9
9781770496552 $12.99

Even though The Slug may appear to be a picturebook at first glance, it's actually part of the "Disgusting Critters" series, each of which is packed with information about commonly reviled creatures. The Slug teaches young readers all about slugs - their body parts, their life cycle, and their contribution to the natural ecosystem. "...slugs play an important role in the environment. They help to break down old or decaying plant and animal matter and turn it back into important nutrients for the soil." Whimsical drawings illustrate this enlightening and educational book, highly recommended for public and elementary school library collections.

My Pet Book
Bob Staake
Random House
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019
9780385373128, $17.99,

My Pet Book will intrigue young picturebook readers ages 3-7 and tells what happens when a boy wants a different kind of pet: a book! Books make the perfect pets - except when they go missing. Any who love to read will find this a fun, involving story.

The Buzz on Honeybees
Cathy Kammerlen, author
Kathy Coates, illustrator
Pelican Publishing Company
1000 Burmaster Street, Gretna, LA 70053
9781455614578, $16.99,

"The Buzz on Honeybees" is an educational narrative journey guided by Itty Bitty Betty, the Storytelling Honeybee. Betty collects stories about honeybees, instead of nectar, sharing them with all in this fascinating mini-encyclopedia of honeybee facts and stories. Fun facts like Antarctica is the only continent without honeybees, and "One out of every three mouthfuls of food you eat is a result of honeybee pollination," bee-strew the colorful pages along with beautiful paintings and illustrations. Rainbow colored beehive structures shade a page about pollination and honey, the only food we eat made by insects, which never spoils. Bee-logo Beezness sidebars give fascinating facts and related trivia about honeybees and honey, such as the following: "Swarming bees are killed only if they present a public nuisance or a danger." Other fun bee stories include the practice of tanging the bees, or beating on a metal pan with a spoon to invite bees to settle in a specially prepared, honey -coated hive. The tanging also served as a warning to others that a beekeeper was claiming and settling a swarm of bees. More information about the three kinds of honeybees, worker, queen, and drone is also given. Beekeeper expert Jim Ovbey is presented, painted in miniature, honored, and quoted. Lovely touches of rainbow-splashed illustrations and fun stories about honeybees make "The Buzz on Honeybees" a top choice for fascinating reading for children age 6 and up.

The ABC Shelf

Take Away the A, An Alphabeast of a Book!
Michael Escoffier, author
Kris Di Giacomo, illustrator
Enchanted Lion Books
351 Van Brunt Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231
9781592701568, $17.95,

"Take Away the A" is a delightful creative alphabet book filled with language puns in verse and fabulous illustrations of quirky animals slyly playing games and stealing the show. The hypnotic humor and inevitable letter subtraction in verse leads to hilarious page-turning and sidesplitting exaggeration. Without quoting the entire alphabet verse, here is a sample: "Without the I STAIRS lead to the STARS./ Without the J JAM I AM./ Without the K the MONKEY makes MONEY./ Without the L PLANTS wear PANTS..." Adding to the impossible image connections of the letter subtractions is the fantastic array of animal characters who show up occupied in the most unusual human situations. "Take Away the A" is a great alphabet story created by a celebrated team who make the whole production work perfectly from A to Z. This book is educational, entertaining, and hilarious, working well on so many levels to teach enjoyment of reading to young children.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

The Mystery of the Ballerina Ghost
Pack-n-Go Girls Adventure series
Janelle Diller, author
World Trek Publishing
121 East Vermijo, Colorado Springs, CO 80903
9781936376001, $ 5.99,

Pack-n-Go Girls presents a mystery series for girls ages 6-9 that includes travel to exotic locations, fun adventures with true blue friends, exploring new languages and cultures, and solving thrilling mysteries together, a fantastic formula for fun and travel-enriched adventure. "The Mystery of the Ballerina Ghost" is the first in this innovative new series of illustrated chapter mysteries, in which Brooke travels from Colorado to Austria to meet Eva, in Schloss Mueller, an ancient Austrian castle. The girls meet and develop a deepening friendship across continents and cultures, while struggling to solve the spooky mystery of the ballerina ghost, a mysterious presence in the castle. Swift moving chapters embellished with black and white illustrations make fun reading and excellent armchair exploration adventures. At the end of the mystery (satisfactorily solved by two clever girls together), informative pages tell What to Know Before You Go! (facts about Austria, traveling, weather to expect, Austrian foods plus a recipe for Kaiserschmarrn, and a list of common German expressions with meaning and pronunciation). Altogether, "The Mystery of the Ballerina Ghost" offers an appealing invitation to celebrate and explore diverse cultures and countries with just a tantalizing touch of mysterious spice, the unknown horizon to entice further exploration and growth. Look for more titles from this innovative series soon. Exploring girls' friendships and mysteries in Austria, Thailand, and Mexico are these other exciting Pack-n-Go Girls: "Mystery of the Secret Room (9781936376032, $5.99)" by Janelle Diller, "Mystery of the Golden Temple (9781936376094, $5.99)" by Lisa Travis, and "Mystery of the Thief in the Night (9781936376063, $5.99) by Janelle Diller.

The Spaniel Family's Time Capsule Mystery
Sharon Ellsberry, author
Amy Fox, illustrator
EEI, Publisher
1006 Dove Creek Drive, Athens, Texas 75751
9780979077739, $8.00,

"The Spaniel Family's Time Capsule Mystery" is the fifth Spaniel series chapter mystery written for middle grade readers and young adults by award-winning author Sharon Ellsberry. This engaging page turner features Cocker Spaniel canine detectives Maggie, Daisy, and Joe, plus a new character, the prairie dog Paintbrush. One day the Spaniels did up a mysterious pretty box, decorated with daisies. The contents of the box are even more puzzling: jars of seeds, two keys, and a lovely flowered brooch plus a letter written in 1943. The Spaniel family has many exciting adventures figuring out what the treasure box is (a time capsule), who buried it, and what should be done with it. The wandering prairie dog, Paintbrush joins the mystery solving team in comic and rambunctious plans to return the contents and the box to the original owner, who they discover is still living nearby in an assisted living home. A heartwarming reunion between friends of 70 years ago occurs because of the Spaniels' timely intervention and return of the time capsule. "The Spaniel Family's Time Capsule Mystery" has all the elements of a great mystery: entertainment, education, history, and enduring love of old friends, whether canine, wild, or human . Children will adore this whole series, with its penciled illustrations of the Spaniel family at work and play, which finishes as always with a handy glossary of new terminology and also a special verse of song, to be sung to a familiar children's tune.

The Board Book Shelf

Roar! Roar!
Sebastien Braun
Nosy Crow
c/o Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street
Somerville, MA 02144
9780763673970 $8.99

Roar! Roar! is a lift-the-flap board book created especially for children ages 0-3, who may be just starting to talk. The flaps that can be lifted to reveal assorted animals are large and remarkably sturdy, perfect for infant hands. Each two-page spread features questions like "Who's that beside the log?", answered by examining the cartoony drawing of an alligator, beneath the flap drawn like a fallen log. Roar! Roar! is an excellent giftbook for very young children, highly recommended.

Litsa Trochatos, author
Virginia Johnson, illustrator
Groundwood Books
c/o House of Anansi Press
110 Spadina Ave., Suite 801
Toronto, ON, Canada, M5V 2K4
9781554983551 $9.95

Don't is a charming, large-sized board book filled with whimsical advice about what not to do with animals. "Don't start a food fight with an octopus. / It has six more arms than you do. / Don't let a cheetah drive your car. / It likes to go really, really fast." The watercolor illustrations of animals and children engaging in mischief add a lighthearted touch to this spritely book sure to enchant beginning readers ages 0 to 3.

My Amazing Day
Karin Fisher-Golton, Lori A. Cheung, and Elizabeth Iwamiya
Pacific Dogwood Press
9780989614511 $8.99

Illustrated with beautiful color photographs, My Amazing Day: A Celebration of Wonder & Gratitude is a children's board book about the incredible aspects of ordinary things. Designed to help teach little ones about the value of being thankful for the wonderful aspects inherent in everyday life, My Amazing Day is a treasure to read aloud and share. "Green was all around me. / I saw pictures in the sky. / I made water jump, jump, jump. / Then I was warm, cozy, and just right." Highly recommended, especially as a giftbook for very young children.

The Easy Reader Shelf

Little Green Peas
Keith Baker
Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor
New York, NY 10020
9781442476608 $17.99

Little Green Peas: A Big Book of Colors is an easy reader children's picturebook, using bright colors and simple words to teach little ones about colors. Anthropomorphic, adventurous "little green peas" experience amazing places marked with each color. For example, a four-page section with the rhyme "Yellow buses - and bumblebees! / Yellow sun and... / little green peas" is paired with lively artwork prominently featuring a yellow school bus transporting young peas to a makeshift baseball diamond! Whimsically funny, Little Green Peas is a delight to read aloud and share with young children. Highly recommended.

The Fiction Shelf

Powder Monkey
Donna McDine, author
KC Snider, artist
Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
12430 Tesson Ferry Road #186, Saint Louis, Missouri 63128
9781616333843, $19.95 hardcover,

Written by award winning children's author Donna McDine, "Powder Monkey" is a thumbnail sketch of the impressment experience of 12-year-old Tommy Kitt who was taken by force with his older brother from his parents' farm by a Royal Navy press gang to serve as a powder monkey and ship boy in a battleship at sea. Enduring beatings, dangerous living conditions, and demanding physical tasks, Tommy witnessed many brutalities including the death by drowning of his brother. But he survived to become an able seaman, never seeing his father and mother again. The fast moving action, bewildering immediacy, and vivid descriptions and illustrations make "Powder Monkey" an intense time travel experience for middle grade readers.

Dork Diaries
Rachel Renee Russell
Simon & Schuster
c/o Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor, New York, NY 10020
9781442487673, $13.99,

Dork Diaries: Tales from a Not-So-Glam TV Star adds to a popular best-selling series begun with Tales from a Not-So-Fabulous Life in 2009, and represents the 7th addition to the series. Here Nikki is in the spotlight and a TV crew will follow her and friends for a month as they record their hit songs. The problem is: they won't have any freedom from media attention. Can they be in the spotlight and still have private lives? Ages 9-13 - particularly those in the lower age group - will find this a fun read enhanced by diary-like lines and printed words that reinforce the idea of a diary format.

Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019

The prolific Gary Paulsen is back with a companion to Liar, Liar. FAMILY TIES (9780385373807, $12.99) revolves around family drama and presents fourteen-year-old Kevin Spencer, a resourceful teen facing an uncle who shows up on their doorstep with a new wife, a fire-loving stepson, and an untrained dog. A backyard wedding celebration seems in order - and adapts to the dysfunctional family's crazy interactions in this vivid story of drama and hijinks. Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre's OLIVER AND THE SEAWIGS (9780385387880, $12.99) is recommended for ages 7-10 and pairs two-color illustrations with the story of Oliver, whose explorer parents go missing, prompting him to embark on a rescue mission with some unusual companions. The high seas hold high adventure and plenty of unusual denizens from mermaids to sea monkeys in this rollicking adventure story, recommended for youngsters who enjoy a zany edge to their reading.

Scholastic, Inc.
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999

Dav Pilkey is back with another Ricky Ricotta adventure: Mighty Robot vs. the Mecha-Monkeys from Mars (9780545631150, $15.99). You may recognize Pilkey's name from his more famous Captain Underpants series: this series is equally captivating and packs in large-size color drawings by Dan Santat throughout as it presents the same dilemma of best friends Ricky and his Mighty Robot who face down a mean Martian invader. Major Monkey doesn't just want Earth, however: he wants to get rid of his major obstacle to success, Ricky's robot. A fine read evolves in a book that's a step above chapter books but not yet into the full-fledged young adult world. Timothy Roland's Monkey Me and the New Neighbor (9780545559867, $15.99) provides black and white drawings to pair with the story of Clyde, who turns into a monkey when he gets excited. His twin sister is thus always trying to calm him down; especially at school. When his secret life is threatened by a new neighbor, it's up to Claudia to protect him in this whimsical simple story that borders on a graphic novel. Jack Chabert's Erie Elementary: The School is Alive! (9780545623933, $15.99) tells of Sam Graves, the school's new hall monitor who discovers that the school is not only alive, but hungers for new students to eat. Protecting his classmates from the school wasn't his original intention, but Sam becomes involved in battling evil on a whole new level in this fun read, which packs in a little under a hundred pages of black and white illustration at every step. Pam Munoz Ryan and Edwin Fotheringham's Tony Baloney Buddy Trouble (9780545481694, $6.99) provides a simple chapter book story packed with large-size brilliantly colored drawings by Edwin Fotheringham, and tells of macaroni penguin Tony Baloney and his best friend Bob, who can't wait for a fun school event. When a fight with Big Sister happens, their event is threatened. It's all about behaviors and sibling interactions in this gentle story of trouble.

Tundra Books
75 Sherbourne Street, 5th floor
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5A 2P9

Two new 'Disgusting Critters' books by Elsie Gravel for ages 6-9 hold 32 pages of fun blends of fact and humor, and straddle the line between fiction and nonfiction. The Slug (9781770496552, $10.99) discusses the slug's food preferences, traits, and why they are both disgusting and engrossing. Large-size print and the injection of humor and human-like qualities ('The slug is a mollusk, like the snail, but it doesn't have a shell.' A pictured snail responds "Ha ha! You're naked!" to the incredulous slug on the facing page.) make this an intriguing approach. Same goes for The Rat (9781770496583, $10.99), which surveys the rat's qualities and why they are 'disgusting'. Kids attracted to natural history explorations with a bit of added drama and excitement will find these intriguing, fun easy readers.

TOR Teen
c/o Tor/Forge Books
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010

Anne Pillsworth's SUMMONED (9780765335890, $17.99) is all about magic and mythology and tells of Sean, who has a fondness for stories of magic and H.P. Lovecraft. When he explores a bookstore in Arkham and discovers a history of witchcraft and an ad from a wizard seeking an apprentice, he moves from being an ordinary small-town teen to becoming involved in the occult world. When he answers the ad, all manner of trouble emerges as he encounters a witch, an occult master, and a sinister focus on the Cthulhu Mythos that is bringing vast changes to Arkham. A fine story emerges, perfect for teen fantasy readers. Julia Mary Gibson's COPPER MAGIC (9780765332110, $16.99) is set in 1906 and tells of Violent, who discovers a copper talisman that gives her visions of another time. She's certain the copper hand is magic - and in a broken family, it can possibly represent healing. Violet's wish unleashes a force that is anything but comforting in this vivid story of magic and discovery.

Lisa Fiedler
McElderry Books
c/o Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor, New York, NY 10020
9781442487819, $15.99,

MOUSEHEART is peppered with black and white illustrations by Vivienne To which enhances the story of pet-shop mouse Hopper, who escapes the shop to discover the underground world of Atlantic below the streets of Brooklyn, which is a rat kingdom seemingly perfect in its construction. But Hopper misses his siblings and Atlantia is threatened by rebels - and there are cats everywhere. Soon Hopper is caught in a battle that faces off two very different factions in this revealing drama of courage and confrontation spiced by mouse protagonists.

All Four Stars
Tara Dairman
c/o Penguin Group USA
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
9780399162527, $16.99,

All Four Stars tells of preteen Gladys, who has been cooking gourmet dishes since the age of seven. Her dream is to become a restaurant critic, but her parents are the epitome of junk food junkies and nobody she knows appreciates fine food. When she gets an email from a New York newspaper who have read her food writing in an essay contest and want her to review a trendy New York dessert bistro, Gladys believes she's lucky indeed. There are only a few obstacles to her dream - such as sneaking into New York City without her parents. A fun story of culinary talent emerges in an inviting story for young adults who like food.

Scholastic, Inc.
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999

Kimberley Griffiths Little's THE TIME OF THE FIREFLIES (9780545165631, $18.99) tells of Larissa, who begins receiving strange phone calls on a disconnected old phone in her family's antique shop that led her to a river where fireflies lead her on a magical journey through time to uncover family secrets. When her mother vanishes, it's these journeys that will give Larissa clues and the courage to prevent another family tragedy. Maggie Stiefvater's SINNER (9780545654579, $18.99) tells of Cole, who has come to California to reclaim the love of his life Isabel; of Isabel, who is trying to rebuild a new life in Los Angeles, and the challenges of their entwined worlds that neither can escape from. A vivid story of failed love and new beginnings emerges, recommended for mature teen readers.

Delacorte Press/Random House
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019

THE MAZE RUNNER by James Dashner (9780553511536, $17.99) began a series of vivid adventure that is now a major motion picture, so audiences new to the book, especially, will appreciate the reissue of this book in paperback (9780385385206, $10.99), and hardcover as well as the accompanying INSIDE THE MAZE RUNNER: THE GUIDE TO THE GLADE (9780553611086, $10.99) which gathers photos from the movie. The Maze Runner movie companion book packs in almost a hundred color photos, close-up profiles of the Gladers, and details about the Maze, while the book includes a centerfold of color photos from the film. It's obvious that publisher and movie makers alike consider this to be a competitor to 'The Hunger Games' and any young adult who enjoyed that saga will welcome this different story of survival. Lurlene McDaniel's THE YEAR OF CHASING DREAMS (9780385741736, $16.99) tells of Giana, who hasn't seem or heard from Jon for months. Now she's back in Windemere to see her; but Giana is deeply involved in the family land that is her heritage and facing conflict from a real estate developer who offers her a deal too good to be true. Tragedy is on the other side of this offer as the town is shaken by events that follow and Giana faces some impossible choices. As a departure from many of her themes revolving around illness, this adds more depth and insight into the human psyche. Amber Lough's THE FIRE WISH (9780395369763, $17.99) tells of Zayele, who captures jinni Najwa and makes a wish - a wish that will transform them both. Lives a traded and both girls must play their parts, sidestepping a host of enemies on all sides and even moving past love. The unusual plot will prove compelling with many satisfying surprises. Dana Alison Levy's THE MISADVENTURES OF THE FAMILY FLETCHER (9780385376525, $15.99) tells of the Fletcher family: four pre-teen boys who begin a new school year with different plans for success. Unfortunately a miserable new neighbor and different obstacles keep each of them from realizing their dreams and impart some new discoveries in this vivid saga of family interactions and new year challenges. Tessa Gratton's THE STRANGE MAID (9780307977519, $17.99) is the second book in the United States of Asgard five-book series, and is set in a world where Norse gods are celebrities in an alternate modern America. Ages 12 and older will appreciate a vivid story line set in a world where the latest technology and many familiar social settings exist alongside dragon slaying, sword training and more. When a band of mountain trolls attacks Signy's town, Ned the troll hunter vanishes and it's up to Signy to leave behind everything familiar to find him. These are excellent leisure readers teens will appreciate!

The Poetry Shelf

Half for You and Half for Me
Katherine Govier, author
Sarah Clement, illustrator
Whitecap Books
Suite 210, 314 West Cordova St.
Vancouver, BC Canada V6B 1E8
c/o MDG & Associates
9781770502123 $22.95

Half for You and Half for Me is a treasury of classic, beloved nursery rhymes, enriched with text asides that describe the rhymes' origins and history. For example, the classic poem "Red sky in the morning, / Sailor take warning. / Red sky at night, / Sailor's delight." is paired with the passage "Sailors and shepherds both take careful note of the weather. The saying is very old and likely to have been passed by word of mouth by shepherds before it was eventually written down by sailors." Striking, stylized color illustrations further enhance this wonderful compendium, sure to prove as fascinating to adults as it is for little ones ages four and up.

Not the Quitting Kind
Sarra J. Roth, author
Tracy Bishop, illustrator
Peter Pauper Press, Inc.
202 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10601
9781441314154, $16.99,

Filled with scenes of delicious frilly tutus, flowers, karate uniforms and rumpled bikes, "Not the Quitting Kind" performs itself in rhyme, telling the tale of a curious girl who hates doing poorly at things she tries the very first time. After one tumble from riding her bike, one ballet dance class snafu, and one attempted karate class, she is ready to stop trying because it's always harder than it looks like to succeed. However her mother encourages her to stick to her efforts for a good finish, and her next project, a painting of flowers, grows from a floppy failure into a beautiful picture. This pleases the girl who tried so hard to create something lovely. "And just as I was leaving to take my bike out for a ride,/ I walked right past my picture, with new feelings deep inside./ I smiled from ear to ear, and with my newly-opened mind, decided that I'm never...going to be the quitting kind!" "Not the Quitting Kind" is great inspirational reading for kids who get discouraged with the process of learning how to do new and exciting things.

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Why Can't Papa Remember My Name?
Dr. Juvenna M. Chang, author
Ronie Pios, illustrator
Robin Racoma, cover illustrator
Trafford Publishing
1663 Liberty Drive, Bloomington, IN 47403
Bohlsen Group (publicity)
9781490726724, $19.57,

"Why Can't Papa Remember My Name?" is an excellent book about a child's experience of encountering Alzheimer's Disease in a loved family member. Kaiya is the only boy in the family who got to know his papa while he was well enough to do special activities such as, playing tennis and basketball, strumming the ukulele, and cooking together. Kaiya is concerned that his Papa cannot always remember his name, so he makes reminder cards and pictures and even a special bracelet to help Papa remember his name. But gradually, Papa begins to forget more important things than Kaiya's name, and to lose other ordinary self care abilities. Kaiya and his mother learn that Papa has Alzheimer's Disease, and special care and supervision must be given to him at all times as he changes through the impact of Alzheimer's. "Why Can't Papa Remember My Name?" is a beautiful story, remembered by author Dr. Juvenna M. Chang from her experiences caring for her husband with Alzheimer's, while raising her children in Hawaii. Beautiful color illustrations present simple portraits of Kaiya and his Papa and other brothers and family members in this touching tribute to a beloved parent who suffered from Alzheimer's Disease.

The Picturebook Shelf

Julia's House for Lost Creatures
Ben Hatke
First Second
175 5th Avenue
New York, NY 10010
9781596438668 $17.99

Julia's House for Lost Creatures is a charming children's picturebook about a young woman who takes in a growing array of fantastic creatures in need of a place to live. Soon trolls, goblins, mermaids, ghosts, and even a dragon are living with her! How can one person bring harmony to such a monstrous medley? The key turns out to be a well-planned chore list, so each monster can dutifully perform its assigned job, and help keep their home clean and orderly! Whimsical color illustrations add just the right touch to this modern-day fable, highly recommended.

Richard Scarry's Best Little Golden Books Ever!
Richard Scarry
Golden Books
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1
New York, NY 10019
9780385379120 $11.99

Richard Scarry's Best Little Golden Books Ever! collects nine classic children's picturebooks into one hardcover, easy-to-handle volume. The reprinted titles by widely beloved author Richard Scarry are "The Bunny Book", "The Animals of Farmer Jones", "Goodnight Little Bear", "Polite Elephant", "Cars and Trucks", "The Country Mouse and the City Mouse", "The Gingerbread Man", "Chicken Little", and "Duck and his Friends". Richard Scarry's Best Little Golden Books Ever! is a timeless, delightful compendium featuring full color illustrations, and perfect for gift-giving or public library children's collections.

Happy Birthday Madame Chapeau
Andrea Beaty, author
David Roberts, illustrator
Harry N. Abrams, Inc.
115 West 18th Street, 6th floor
New York, NY 10011
9781419712197 $16.95

Happy Birthday Madame Chapeau is a quirky picturebook about connecting with others in one's community. Madame Chapeau is a quiet and somewhat isolated woman, accustomed to spending her birthdays alone. But on one fateful birthday, a crow steals her favorite bonnet! As she pursues the feathered thief, one Paris dweller after another offers her a replacement hat - a baker, a policeman, a cowboy, and more. None of their hats are quite right for Madame Chapeau... until a little black girl offers a hat "knitted with love and [her] best birthday wish." A heartwarming tale of fun and friendships formed, Happy Birthday Madame Chapeau is delightful from cover to cover.

Not Every Princess
Jeffrey Bone and Lisa Bone, authors
Valeria Docampo, illustrator
Magination Press
c/o American Psychological Association
750 First St. NE, Washington, DC 20002
9781433816482, $9.95,

"Not Every Princess" is an imaginative journey inspired by the challenging, compelling poem with amplified illustrations which gently nudges children to use their imaginations to transcend stereotypical gender roles and envision larger, fulfilling lives and occupations for themselves. The thrust and charm of the poem, "Not Every Princess," is sweetly powerful, perfectly expressed and complemented by the swirling, stunning illustrations by Valeria Docampo. "Not Every Princess" is a children's title that constitutes required reading for all children (and their parents) who deserve a better future, to be the best they can be.

There's Going To Be A Baby
John Burningham & Helen Oxenbury
Candlewick Press
99 Dover Street
Somerville, MA 02144
9780763672652 $7.99

There's Going To Be A Baby is a timeless children's picturebook from the perspective of a young boy (barely out of toddlerhood) who learns from his pregnant mother that he's going to have a new baby brother or sister soon. The boy's head naturally swims with questions - when will the baby come? What will it do? "The baby could be a doctor or a nurse when it grows up. I hope the baby doesn't take care of me when I'm sick." Charming color artwork of the mother and her child going about everyday life, from a visit to the beach to bathtime naked in the tub, add a heartwarming touch to this wonderful book, especially ideal as an aid for expecting parents to bring up the subject of a forthcoming new sibling with their young children.

Iris De Mouy, author/illustrator
Shelley Tanaka, translator
c/o Publishers Group West
1700 Fourth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
9781554984879, $16.95,

"Naptime" is an imaginative artist's rendition of a child's response to the routine of daily naptime. Cross-looking, contrary animal faces outlined heavily in black state their strong aversion to the thought of naptime. But all the (grumpy, tired) animals respond with ambivalent cooperation when a wily mother figure suggests "Just close one eye......then close the other eye..." ...and they all pass out completely together on the last page while the mother says (quietly), "And that's all there is to it." This wonderful resistant-to-naptime story is a great tool for persuasion, because it allows the animals to portray exactly all the toddler's objections to rules or schedules or being tired, etc.etc. This frees the child to..... close one eye........ (and you can guess the sleepy rest of the story).

The Very Cranky Bear
Nick Bland
Orchard Books
c/o Scholastic, Inc.
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999
9780545612692, $16.99,

The Very Cranky Bear tells of a grumpy bruin who lives in Jingle Jangle Jungle. Four friends who encounter him can't understand his moodiness: all they know is that cave play on a rainy day has resulted in a cranky bear roused from his nap. He chases them out: now they have nowhere warm to play. Can they convince a cranky bear to play with them? A warm story evolves.

Bats in the Band
Brian Lies
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
215 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10003
9780544105690, $17.99,

BATS IN THE BAND offers lovely illustrations and a zany story centered around music-playing bats. From banjos to bat drums, country ballads to blues, this late night music festival is one to remember, especially with Brian Lies's lovely full-page color drawings throughout. The illustrations are a powerful draw and enhance a whimsical, fun story any young picturebook reader will relish.

Ninja Red Riding Hood
Corey Rosen Schwartz
c/o Penguin Group USA
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
9780399163548, $16.99,

Ninja Red Riding Hood comes from the authors of The Three Ninja Pigs, receives fun drawings by Dan Santat, and tells of a wolf whose craving for meat has been frustrated by pigs who not only learn Ninja, but teach everyone around them. There's nothing to do but to join in: and so he learns moves himself and decides to practice them on a little girl and her grandmother. Unfortunately, they too have absorbed some moves of their own in this whimsical and funny account of a wolf-busting effort.

Swamp Chomp
Lola M. Schaefer
Holiday House
425 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10017
9780823424078, $16.95,

SWAMP CHOMP receives fun drawings by Paul Meisel, is set at lunch hour in the swamp, and shows how an alligator ready to chomp makes a splash in a placid wetlands world. All creatures are hunting for food; but the alligator threatens all - even though each creature has their own hunting approach. A light story for new readers is packed with swamp creatures to add color and attraction to a fun story.

Mahavira: The Hero of Nonviolence
Manoj Jain
Wisdom Tales Press
PO Box 2682, Bloomington, IN 47402
9781937786212, $17.95,

Mention 'nonviolence' and Ghandi comes immediately to mind; but this is the story of another who excelled in creating an example for a peaceful world: a young prince who became a wandering monk and led the Jain religion. Mahavira wanted a peaceful world where fear and anger were lacking. Demi, a famous illustrator, brings his story to life for ages 6 and up, enhancing a story which requires either reading skills or parental read-aloud help, but which introduces the story of the Jain belief system to a younger age range than is usual.

The Math Shelf

A Mousy Mess
Laura Driscoll, author
Deborah Melmon, illustrator
Kane Press
225 E. 46th St., #4D, New York, NY 10017
9781565656465, $7.95 32pp,

"A Mousy Mess" is the 14th title in a fun math education series that uses an entertaining story (featuring an enterprising mouse hero) that contains the explanation of a math concept at its core. Delightful full page color illustrations show Albert Mouse and his sister Wanda and friend Leo as they scamper off to the Playroom for a rare treat of playing while the People (and their cat, Groucho) are away on a visit. Because they don't know when the People are coming back, the mice must be cautious. Everything they play with or touch must be cleaned up or returned to its position before the People return. Naturally there is a rather spectacular mess caused by the falling of boxes of many different kinds of toy. This leaves the mice with a problem: How to sort the many different objects in the playroom, to put them back neatly on the shelves and in the boxes? The mice decide to get lots more mice to help sort toys, finding that they can sort in different ways - shapes, seize, color, or the kind of toy it is. All the marbles went in the marble jar, for example. Just when things were looking done, Albert fell in the marble jar and had to be rescued, while the People were starting to arrive back at the house. Finally, the mice tipped over the full marble jar to get Albert out just as Groucho the cat charged into the playroom! Rolling marbles foiled Groucho's charge, and Albert, Wanda, and Leo escaped into the mousehole, leaving Groucho to receive the blame for the spilled marbles! At the end of "A Mousy Mess," a list of Fun Activities are described and suggested to help children understand sorting, attributes and classifying, the math concepts illustrated in the story. "A Mousy Mess" is appropriate for children ages 4 and up, providing excellent stimulation and teaching basic math concepts.

The World History Shelf

The Family Romanov
Candace Fleming
Schwartz Wade Books
c/o Random House Children's Books
1745 Broadway, 10-1, New York, NY 10019
9780375867828, $18.99,

Ages 12 and up will find an unusual read in The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, and the Fall of Imperial Russia. At first glance such a coverage would seem a history for adult readers; but this story of the Russian Revolution is geared to a younger age level than most, and provides a fine story of an unprepared tsar who inherited a life of luxury and who ignored growing political unrest even as World War I threatened Russia's borders. This blend of biography, covering the lives of the Romanov family, and history, centering on Russia's early uprising, makes for a gripping story.

The Cookbook Shelf

c/o Octopus Publishing
236 Park Avenue, New York NY 10017

Two new 'My First' children's cookbooks are geared to foods kids can make and eat, and provide a little over a hundred pages each of easy, step-by-step recipes which are child-friendly. Parents will want to consult Amanda Cross's MY FIRST JUICES & SMOOTHIES: HEALTHY RECIPES KIDS WILL LOVE (9780600629672, $9.99): it's packed with sixty natural juices and smoothies that parents will find quick and easy to prepare. Hints include how to juice and what not to juice. Becky Johnson's MY FIRST BAKING BOOK (9780600629665, $9.99) offers some 50 recipes for kids to make and eat, encouraging families to cook together and providing easy introductory baking recipes kids can easily put together with minimal adult supervision. The focus on dishes for kids makes these two attractive picks for adults who would introduce children to nutrition and cooking.

The Biography Shelf

Frida & Diego: Art Love Life
Catherine Reef
Clarion Books
c/o Houghton Mifflin
215 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10003
9780547821849, $18.99,

Frieda & Diego: Art Love Life will reach grades 5 and up with over a hundred fifty pages exploring the life of Frida Kahlo, who first encountered her future husband when Frida was a schoolgirl playing pranks on a painter working on a mural at her school. Years later they met again and were married... and what followed was one of the most notorious marriages of the 20th century, packed with passion and angst. Frida and Diego are remembered for both their fiery relationship and their artistry: this book covers both in a survey packed with black and white and color photos throughout. The result is a fine survey perfect for fans of
Kahlo or Rivera alike.

The Multimedia Shelf

Korean Folk Songs: Stars in the Sky and Dreams in Our Hearts
Robert Sang-Ung Choi, author
SamEe Back, illustrator
Tuttle Publishing
364 Innovation Drive, North Clarendon, VT 05759
9780804844680, $15.95 hardcover,

"Korean Folk Songs: Stars in the Sky and Dreams in Our Hearts" is an illustrated collection of fourteen favorite traditional Korean folk songs written in vocal /piano musical notation with words in both English and Korean. Along with each song is a short note or description explaining the history and significance of the song in Korean culture. There is also a section called "Do the actions! with many songs, giving a description of simple, fun play gestures that children enjoy making with the words of the song. An accompanying CD has all fourteen songs performed by Yebin Won, vocalist, and Robert Sang-Ung Choi, piano. Each song is performed as a vocal piano version, followed by an instrumental version of the song accompaniment with which children can sing along. Songs include "Mountain Rabbit," "Butterfly," "Blue Birds," Arirang," the ever-popular ethnic national anthem for Korea, and more. Song lyrics are written in three lines, traditional Korean script, phonetic English pronunciation of Korean, and English translation. The sensitive illustrations show beloved scenes of beauty in the mountains and the farmers' crops. Some songs, such as "Clap, Clap, Clap!" are written by composer Jung Soon Cheol, nicknamed Korea's Beethoven. His songs remain, although he was abducted and disappeared during the Korean War (1950-52). "Korean Folk Songs" is an inspirational traditional and nursery song collection, influenced by and interwoven with a rich but bitter, complex history of this beloved country.

I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly
Songs by Alan Mills
Illustrated by PisHier
Performed by Thomas Hellman and Emilie Clepper
The Secret Mountain
3816 Royal Avenue, Montreal, QC, Canada, H4A 2M2
c/o Beth Blenz-Clucas Publicity
5505 SW Illinois Street, Portland, OR 97221
9782924217238 $16.95

Also available as an enhanced ebook for the iPad, I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly is a combination children's picturebook and music CD, featuring an imagined rendition of classic children's songs, originally composed by Alan Mills in the 1950's. Whimsical artwork and an exuberant, upbeat performance add a sense of wackiness to these timeless poems set to catchy music. (The titular song is about old lady who swallows a fly, the swallows a spider to catch the fly, then swallows more creatures... "I know an old lady who swallowed a horse / She's dead, of course." It isn't the only rhyme that touches on mortality; "Twelve Kittens" is a song in which some kittens run away, and some lose their lives to various accidents). The featured songs/rhymes are "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly" (2:48), "Animal Alphabet Song" (2:13), "Heel Toe, and Away We Go" (3:47), "123 ABCD" (2:26), "My Father's in the City" (3:43), "Sailing Over the Sea" (3:47), "Once I Had an Old Red Hen" (4:22), "Per Fiddler" (3:23), "The Hungry Goat" (4:47), "Sing a Little Song Along With Me" (2:57), "Twelve Kittens" (2:26), and "The Months of the Year" (2:36).

The Audiobook Shelf

Ballet Stories
David Angus
Read by Jenny Agutter
Naxos of America, Inc.
1810 Columbia Avenue, Suite 28
Franklin, TN 37064
9626342315 $17.98

Suitable for listeners of all ages, Ballet Stories is an audiobook on CD of classic tales from great ballets: Swan Lake, Coppelia, Sleeping Beauty, Nutcracker, and Giselle. Each story is read aloud by former ballet performer Jenny Agutter, and enhanced with timeless musical melodies. Ballet Stories is a wonderful addition to high school and public library audiobook collections! 2 CDs, 1 hour 48 min.

The Music CD Shelf

More Multicultural Children's Songs from Ella Jenkins
Ella Jenkins
Smithsonian Folkways Recordings
600 Maryland Ave., SW, Suite 2001
Washington, DC 20024
c/o Shore Fire Meda (publicity)
$11.98 CD / $9.99 download,

Successor to the 1995 album "Multicultural Children's Songs", More Multicultural Children's Songs from Ella Jenkins is an anthology of twenty classic children's songs from around the world, performed by Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award-winning singer Ella Jenkins. A 20-page booklet with lyrics enhances these cheerful, inspirational songs, especially recommended to educate and entertain children ages 3-8! The tracks are "Where is Mary?" (3:27), "Shabbat Shalom" (0:47), "Hukilau" (2:54), "Rushing Around in Russia" (0:41), "In the People's Republic of China" (2:04), "A Train Ride to the Great Wall" (2:37), "Count from One to Ten" (8:40), "I'm Going to Cairo" (1:59), "Que Bonita Bandera" (0:41), "Canadian Frienship" (1:42), "A German Counting Rhyme" (0:23), "Tee-kan-yas" (2:03), "Yemayah" (1:38), "A Taxi Ride" (1:08), "Differences (spoken word)" (0:54), "In Australia" (2:19), "Australian Zoo" (4:50), "Bim Bom, Bim Bom" (1:27), "My Little Blue Dreidel" (1:17), and "Chotto Matte Kudasai" (2:20).

Jam on Rye
Randy Kaplan
Produced by Mike West
Yellow Thing Records & Books
c/o Jonas Public Relations
240 26th Street, Suite 3
Santa Monica, CA 90402
$17.32 CD / $8.99 MP3

Jam on Rye is a children's music CD filled with tongue-curling lyrics and laugh-out-loud fun. Randy Kaplan plays the guitar, merrily singing silly songs sure to prompt a smile in listeners of all ages. Especially recommended as a whimsical treat to play during children's parties! The tracks are "Burpity Burp Burp Burp" (3:17), "Jam on Rye" (3:53), "Hockey Puck" (1:27), "Virginia, Vega, and I" (2:59), "Ode to a Shower Door" (5:30), "Don't Fill Up On Chips" (3:10), "Not Too Young for a Song" (2:15), "Nagasaki" (2:03), "Crew Cut" (3:34), "Slow Motion Mom" (1:51), "Slow Eater" (3:51), "Everybody Farts" (3:09), "Follow Your Nose" (1:22), "So Funny I Forgot to Laugh" (2:54), "Time to Dream" (2:16), and "Goodnight, My Someone (from The Music Man)" (2:02). 46 min.

The DVD Shelf

Worlds Together: Cuba
Privately Published
c/o Master Communications (distribution)
4480 Lake Forest Drive #302, Cincinnati, OH 45242
c/o Andrea Blain Public Relations
9781604801576 $29.95

Part of the "Worlds Together" DVD series designed to introduce young people to the culture, history, cuisine, geography, and people of other nations, Worlds Together: Cuba is a short documentary touching upon the history, health care, religious practices, education, music and more of this beautiful island nation. A Teacher's Guide in PDF format is included! Featuring both English and Spanish audio (as well as subtitles in both languages), Worlds Together: Cuba is especially recommended for middle grade through high school homeroom viewing and school library DVD collections. 25 min., closed-captioned. Also highly recommended are the other new DVDs in the "Worlds Together" series, Worlds Together: Ecuador (9781604801583, $29.95) and World Together: Colombia (9781604801569, $29.95).

Peppa Pig: The Balloon Ride
Entertainment One Ltd.
c/o Andrea Blain Public Relations
9750 Crawford Avenue, Skokie, IL 60076
1417242973 $14.98

Peppa Pig: The Balloon Ride is an animated children's DVD of twelve short, delightful episodes featuring Peppa Pig, who lives with her little brother George, and her Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig. Peppa delights in games, making new friends, and visiting new places - but the one thing she loves most is jumping into muddy puddles! The simple, colorful animation adds a charming touch to this preschool-friendly television series, highly recommended for young children. 60 min., English language, stereo.

The Activity Shelf

Zoom In!
Anna Bowles, commissioning editor
c/o Octopus Publishing Group
237 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017,
9781783251629, $9.99 48 pages,

"Zoom In!: Visual Illusions and Guessing Games" is an amazing color photo gallery of bizarre looking closeups of everyday objects, plus guessing games for closeup identities, and challenges for analysis of visual illusions. Every page has circled closeups of substances that beg to be identified correctly, challenging some of the finest young thinkers. Enhanced by excellent microscopic photography, "Zoom In!" provides educational interaction with parts of our amazing environment for kids, allowing them the fun of figuring it out for themselves before they find the answer.

Super Sleepover Secrets
Sasha Morton, author
Kat Kalindi Cameron, illustrator
c/o Octopus Publishing
237 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017
9781783251209, $10.99,

"Super Sleepover Secrets" is a tasty, activity-laden guidebook for girls (and parents) who love to throw special sleepover parties for their special friends. Complete with downloadable augmented reality app that enables readers to unlock six how -to videos, "Super Sleepover Secrets" is overflowing with bright colors, photos of girls having fun at sleepovers, ideas for snacks, games and beauty treatments, and all kinds of friend pampering plans and tricks. Planning the sleepover party from start to finish is key to successful results, so super secrets include Pampering Secrets, Bling, Beauty, and BFFs, Hair Heaven, Tasty Treats, and Sleepover Journal suggestions, plus a sleepover guestbook and photo album. A final page of Notes for Adults gives excellent suggestions for supervising a super sleepover party. Most activities, recipes, and/or events are planned for girls age 7 and up, but special supportive adult supervision is suggested in kitchen and cooking related activities and some others, found in the "You will need sections." This fun party book presents an excellent model of appropriate girls' group activities, with multi-ethnic girl models for all fun activities. Colored card sidebars and funky, fun illustrations) take the sleepover party theme on a fabulous magical mystery tour in this excellent special party idea book.

Pop-Out & Paint Dogs & Cats
Cindy A. Littlefield
Storey Publishing
210 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA 01247
9781612121406, $12.95,

Pop-Out & Paint Dogs & Cats offers pop-out templates, paint directions for breed markings, and a format that encourages all ages to paint 19 different dogs and cats, and is recommended for any young artist who wants to refine animal drawing skills. The blank animal templates pop out easily and while this doesn't make for a lending library acquisition, it's perfect for home artists who want to practice painting techniques while absorbing the appearances that make each breed unique. Everything's here for the ingredients of success: all that's required are paints and an enthusiasm for dogs and cats.

The Needlecraft Shelf

I Can Cross Stitch
Elizabeth Spurlock, author
106 East Post Road, Barrie, IN 48731
9781573674492, $8.99,

"I Can Cross Stitch" is a collection of nine special projects with lessons in each, easy for craft-loving girls ages 10 and up to complete with minimal adult assistance or supervision. Instructions are included for stitches, supplies needed, planning, starting and finishing the projects. Color photo displays show each project as completed, while simple pattern illustrations and instructions are presented step by step. Projects include a floral flair, dream box, itty-bitty memo board, polka dot explosion, woodland trio, holiday jingle, a monogram door hanger, birdsong tote, and a flower power pillow. Many fun ideas about alternate design finishing, special tips or tricks, and personalizing each project are included. "I Can Cross Stitch" offers hours of creative activity to the lucky girl who reads it.

The Folktale/Fairytale Shelf

The Pandas and their Chopsticks
Wisdom Tales
PO Box 2682
Bloomington, IN 47402
9781937786168 $16.95

The Pandas and their Chopsticks is a picturebook anthology of ten brief, animal-themed fables, each with a life lesson or moral. For example, "The Cat Who Prayed" tells of a cat who wore prayer beads around his neck; the local mice thought this meant the cat had reformed, and they didn't have to fear him anymore. But at the first opportunity, the cat pounced and almost ate the mice for dinner! The moral is "Be careful around those who make a show of how good they are." Colorful, fluid illustrations add the perfect, ever-so-slightly-surreal touch to the fantastic and wisdom-filled classic tales of The Pandas and their Chopsticks. Highly recommended!

The Environmental Shelf

Fall Leaves
Loretta Holland, author
Elly MacKay, illustrator
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
215 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10003
9780544106642 $16.99

Fall Leaves is a beautiful and educational children's picturebook about the fall season. Striking, autumn-color illustrations are paired with simple descriptions of changes in the plants and wildlife that herald the transition to winter. "Leaves Leave: Most of the leaves leave by early November, blown down by the wind and rain. They carpet the woods and roads with brilliant color. Those that are still hanging on branches will fall when the trees stop feeding. The ends of the branches seal up, and the leaves snap right off." Fall Leaves is a joyful and respectful treasure to read aloud and share with little ones, highly recommended.

The Christian Shelf

I Forgive You
Nicole Lataif, author
Katy Betz, illustrator
Pauline Books & Media
50 Saint Pauls Avenue
Boston, MA 02130-3491
0819837261 $10.95

Featuring bright, simple color illustrations, I Forgive You: Love We Can Hear, Ask For, and Give is a poetic picturebook designed to teach young children about the Christian virtue of forgiveness. Teaching young people that God forgives us for our mistakes, that we are called to forgive one another even as God forgives us, the importance of forgiveness for true friendship, and that holding grudges brings incalculable harm, I Forgive You is a treasure to read aloud and share with little ones. "You do a lot of things right. / But even when you do something wrong, / God loves you. / No matter what you do, / He never says, 'I'm through with you!'"

The Judaic Shelf

It's Called Kibud Av Va'Eim!
Dina Rosenfeld, author
Len Ebert, illustrator
Hachai Publishing
527 Empire Boulevard
Brooklyn, NY 11225
9781929628780 $10.95

Featuring durable, laminated pages that are easier for little children's hands to turn, It's Called Kibud Av Va'Eim! A Story about Honoring Parents is a picturebook especially for Jewish children, about the importance of being respectful to one's parents (a tenet of faith embodied in one of the Ten Commandments, "Honor they mother and thy father". The rhyme encourages little ones to show respect in ten different ways, such as by being quiet when one's parents are asleep, never sitting in the chairs designated for one's parents, rising to greet them when they come home from a long day, and not interrupting them when they talk. "Seven - When they talk, we wait. Eight - We taste what's on our plate." The color illustrations of a loving Jewish family with a little boy and a little girl learning the proper way to honor their mother and father add the perfect touch to this excellent read-aloud teaching story.

The Sports Shelf

What Are The Chances? The Wildest Plays in Sports
Sports Illustrated Kids
c/o Time Inc. Home Entertainment
PO Box 11016, Des Moines, Iowa 50336-1016
c/o Goodman Media (publicity)
750 Seventh Avenue, 28th Floor, New York, NY 10019
9781618933744 $14.95

What Are The Chances? The Wildest Plays in Sports is devoted to off-the-wall, totally unexpected, long-odds gambit in professional sports history, described with a paragraph of text and illustrated with striking, full-color photography. Incredible plays in baseball, basketball, football, golf, and ice hockey are showcased, in this exciting and accessible softcover compendium! "Scott Skiles was known for his excellent court vision during a 10-year NBA career as a point guard... On December 30, 1990, he set the record for most assists in a game with 30 in the Magic's 155-116 win over the Denver Nuggets. It's a record that still stands." Although What Are The Chances? is especially intended to engage younger readers, sports fans of all ages will thoroughly enjoy paging through its list of record-setting plays and astounding athletic feats.

The Art Shelf

Art Is...
Glenna Kubit
Crystal Productions
1812 Johns Drive
Glenview, IL 60025-1581
9781562907051 $16.95

Art Is... The Elements of Art & Principles of Design for Children is an educational picturebook designed to teach young people the basic art concepts and terminology. Full-color, full-page photography and illustrations bring to life such ideas as "SHAPES may be regular, GEOMETRIC, such as circles, squares, triangles, and rectangles. They are found in man-made objects. Look inside your home to find some of these shapes. Or, SHAPES can be ORGANIC, irregular, as in objects found in nature. Look outside your home to find some of these shapes." Brief, illuminating descriptions teach young people about elements of art (Line, Shape, Form, Color, Value, Texture, Space) and principles of design (Contrast, Pattern, Rhythm, Emphasis, Balance, Movement, Unity). Highly recommended, especially for budding young artists and elementary school library collections!

Books in Series

Let's Be Friends
SeoYun Choi, author
Matsumi Furukawa, illustrator
Joy Cowley, Language Arts Consultant
Norwood House Press
PO Box 316598, Chicago, IL 60631
9781599536491, $22.60,

"Let's Be Friends" is an innovative young reader's story from a special developmental series called MySELF. Teaching with a social/emotional focus enhances all learning for young children. Big is a big elephant who is lonely because he has no friends. Little is a tiny mouse who has no friends also. The two animals realize that they can be good friends to each other, and when another lonely animal, Moley, tries to poison their friendship with each other, they actually overcome that obstacle by including Moley in their friendship circle. The narration of "Let's Be Friends" is enhanced by incredibly delicate, expressive illustrations with soft textures and appealing form and colors. "Let's Be Friends" is a learning booster for children, with the Reader's Theater interactive approach to reading experience using dramatic interpretation and a theater script incorporated through website access on online availability. "Let's Be Friends" is ideal for children ages 5 and up.

Emmett Kelly: The Greatest Clown on Earth
Donald McManus
Truman State University Press
100 East Normal Street
Kirksville, MO 63501-4221
9781612481203 $32.00

Part of the "Notable Missourians" series, Emmett Kelly: The Greatest Clown on Earth is a biography written for preteens and young adults, about an entertainer who transformed the art of clowning. In the early 1900's, circus clowns were beloved for their silly escapades, and known for their smiling faces. Then the Great Depression struck, causing such widespread unemployment and suffering that Emmett Kelly resolved to be a different type of clown - one that acknowledged the hard times people endured. Emmet's clown character, Weary Willie, was a sad-faced clown, and his tragic-comedy performances inspired people to buckle down and persevere during the worst of terrible times. Emmett Kelly had such a strong impact on people, when they desperately needed entertainment and cheer the most, that became the most famous clown in the world. Illustrated with both color and vintage black-and-white photography, Emmett Kelly: The Greatest Clown on Earth is an excellent addition to high school and public library biography shelves, highly recommended.

The Science of Tsunamis
Leon Gray, author
Gareth Stevens Publishing
111 East 14th Street, Suite 349, New York, NY 10003
9781433986673, $31.95,

"The Science of Tsunamis" is an excellent natural science title from the juvenile educational series titled "Nature's Wrath: the Science Behind Natural Disasters." Four definitive chapters explore the underlying natural causes and sequences of events that culminate in tsunamis, defined as a crushing series of gigantic ocean waves. Frequent photos of disastrous effects of tsunamis are included, with World's Worst round shaped sidebars of related earthquake and other information. Tsunamis are investigated both historically and analytically, with emphasis on science -assisted efforts to detect and provide early warnings and coordinated emergency efforts. It is agreed that nothing can prevent tsunamis, but every effort must be focused on early warnings, preventing fatalities, and providing disaster assistance quickly in the wake of a tsunami. A helpful glossary of terms and list of related books and websites concludes "The Science of Tsunamis," an excellent natural science resource for middle grade students age 10 and up. Highly recommended additional titles from the "Nature's Wrath" series include the following: "The Science of Volcanoes " (9781433986710, $31.95), by Angela Royston, and "The Science of Avalanches" (9781433986512, $31.95), by Richard Spilsbury.

The Country Mouse and the City Mouse
Carl Sommer, author
Ignacio Noe, illustrator
Sommer Time Stories Classics series
Advance Publishing
6950 Fulton St., Houston, TX 77022
9781575370804, $16.95,

"The Country Mouse and the City Mouse" as retold by Carl Sommer is part of a multiple award winning educational series called Sommer Time Stories Classics. This tale invites children to investigate attributes such as cheerfulness, appreciation, or peacefulness, and acceptance of differences, with its modern reframing of the traditional tale of the country mouse and his urban cousin. Filled with lush color illustrations that emphasize the contrasting home environments and styles of the two mouse cousins, "The Country Mouse and the Town Mouse" retraces the two lifestyle choices in comfortable narrative style, with the inevitable homily conclusion, spoken by the Country Mouse after experiencing both the luxuries and the hazards of life in the City Mouse's fancy home: "A home with peace and safety is a much, much better place to live in than a house with plenty and danger (p.32)." In addition to the cloth bound library editions, the volumes of the Sommer Time Stories are available in digital form, classic DVD videos, and in Classic Read-Alongs. Other highly recommended titles in this acclaimed series include: "The Boy Who Cried Wolf!" (9781575370798, $16.95), "Androcles and the Lion" (9781575370750, $16.95), "The Emperor's Clothes" (9781575370811, $16.95), and "The Lion and the Three Bulls" (9781575370835, $16.95).

M. J. York, author
The Child's World
1980 Lookout Drive, Mankato, MN 56003
9781626873285, $27.07,

"Canoeing" is a great introductory illustrated manual for juveniles from an outdoor sports series for middle grade kids from The Child's World. Beautiful color photographs show scenes of canoeing out on the water, different types of canoes, life jackets and safety equipment or gear, and more. "Canoeing" is all about exploring nature in a quiet, respectful, open way that closely resembles traditional canoeing activity as initiated by Native Americans thousands of years ago in North America. Kids can learn so much from the experience of canoeing. Teamwork, safety practices, nature observation, conservation practices and principles, and many more excellent life skills and memorable experiences await the young canoe paddler. Canoeing is a great experience that can be a lifetime adventure. Additional information is found at the book's end in the Glossary, list of resources, and web sites. Exciting outdoor experiences await the adventurer in a canoe! Other exciting and highly recommended titles in the same outdoor sports series include the following: "Hiking" (9781626873308, $27.07) by M. J. York, "Hunting" (9781626873315, $27.07) by Arnold Ringstad, "Rock Climbing" (9781626873339, $27.07) by M. J. York, "Kayaking" (9781626873322, $27.07) by Arnold Ringstad, "Biking" (9781626873261, $27.07) by Arnold Ringstad, "Camping" (9781626873278") by M. J. York, and "Fishing" (9781626873292, $27.07) by Arnold Ringstad.

Mythology of the American Indians
Evelyn Wolfson, author
William Sauts Bock, illustrator
Enslow Publishers, Inc.
40 Industrial Road, Box 398, Berkeley Heights, NJ 07922
9780766061620, $ 27.94 trade,$20.95 schools/libraries,

"Mythology of the American Indians" is a 96 page resource book of mythology tales from North American Indian traditions, carefully researched and skillfully retold with suggested questions and answers, expert commentary, and black and white drawings and a map locating the North American tribes and peoples whose tales are included. There are nine different traditional stories: from the Tshimshians of the Northwest, the Salish from the Coast Plateau, the Maidu from California, the Cherokees from the Southeast, the Blackfeet from the Northern Plains, the Cheyenne from the Southern Plains, the Hope from the Southwest, the Anishinabes from the Western Great Lakes, and the Micmacs from the Eastern Woodlands. The tales are particularly chosen for a special teaching or demonstration of a desirable (or undesirable) quality in a man or a woman. At the end are a Glossary of terms and Chapter Notes, citing sources, and a bibliography for further reading. "Mythology of the American Indians" is from the Mythology, Myths, and Legends series for students ages 11 and up. Other highly recommended specialized titles from the same series include "Mythology of King Arthur and His Knights (9780766061828), by Evelyn Wolfson, "Mythology of the Egyptians (9780766061675)" by Don Nardo, "Mythology of the Iliad and the Odyssey (9780766061729)" by Karen Bornemann Spies, "Mythology of the Inuit (9780766061774)" by Evelyn Wolfson, and "Mythology of the Romans (9780766061873)," by Evelyn Wolfson.

Nelson Mandela: South Africa's Anti-Apartheid Revolutionary
Diane Dakers
Crabtree Publishing Company
350 Fifth Avenue, 59th Floor
New York, NY 10118
9780778712411 $33.27

Part of Crabtree Publishing's "Groundbreakers" series of educational biographies for teen and young adult readers, Nelson Mandela: South Africa's Anti-Apartheid Revolutionary tells of the revolutionary who became a figurehead of the struggle to end South Africa's oppressive system of apartheid (the forced segregation of black and white races). Mandela's passion for social justice led him to become a lawyer, join the African National Congress (ANC), and crusade for the rights of black South Africans. He helped found a military branch of the ANC that used guerrilla attacks against the government, and was imprisoned for 27 years. International pressure eventually enabled Mandela's release, and he was elected president in 1994, serving until 1999. His term as leader was notably marked by his desire for national healing and reunification, not revenge. "As president, Nelson focused on resolving conflicts among the various South African ethnic groups, putting a stop to violence, and rebuilding the country and its economy. He also worked toward restoring South Africa's reputation as a respected nation within the world at large." Mandela received the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize along with President de Klerk, for their combined efforts to bring peace and equality to South Africa. A widely beloved statesman, Mandela was mourned the world over when he passed away in 2013. Nelson Mandela: South Africa's Anti-Apartheid Revolutionary is highly recommended for high school and public library biography collections.

Mokie & Kade series
Shelley A. Wilson, author
Tom Kerr, illustrator
Turtle River Productions
13518 L. Street, Omaha, NE 68137
c/o Concierge Marketing Inc.
$12.95 each

Also available as ebooks for Kindle, iPad, and other e-reader devices, Mokie & Kade is a new children's picturebook series about a young boy, Kade, and his puppy friend Mokie. Mokie & Kade: Puppy Love (9781941391006), is all about Mokie's adoption (he's named "Mokie" because he's the color of mocha). The story also emphasizes the responsibilities of owning a puppy! "Dad and Mom talk to me about what it means to own a puppy. Like... feeding him, taking him for walks, giving him a good, happy home, cleaning up after him, playing with him, loving him." Mokie & Kade: Backyard Adventure (9781941391037) is about Mokie & Kade's very first camping trip together, along with their friends and a responsible adult. They learn how to set up a tent, build a campfire, and have fun! Jubilant color illustration add just the right touch to each picturebook. As a bonus, QR codes in each book point the way to online videos about pets and delightful activities. Mokie & Kade is a wonderful picturebook series for young dog lovers, highly recommended.

Crabtree Publishing Company
350 Fifth Avenue, 59th Floor, New York, NY 10118

Additions to two series make for fine picks for young readers; especially those working on reports. The 'Groundbreaker Biographies' ($24.95 each) is a new series for ages 11-14 exploring people whose lives and talents have brought them to the top of their field. Diane Dakers' NELSON MANDELA: SOUTH AFRICA'S ANTI-APARTHEID REVOLUTIONARY (9780778712411) provides a little over a hundred pages exploring how Mandela's life became a symbol for change in the region. His education led to struggles for social justice in his country, and lead to his ground-breaking work as a lawyer and revolutionary. Matt J. Simmons' JACKIE ROBINSON: BREAKING THE COLOR LINE IN BASEBALL (9780778712428) provides a history of baseball and race relations in the sport, documenting his involvement with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947 that would change the world of sports forever. Kids ages 5-8 will benefit from 'Explore the Continents' ($19.95 each): every volume holds 32 pages of full color illustration to accompany facts about the continents of the world, pairing maps, diagrams and contemporary photos with a focus on geography. WHERE ON EARTH ARE FORESTS? (9780778705000) explores the world's forests, RIVERS? (9780778705024) considers the mightiest rivers of the world, MOUNTAINS (9780778705017) considers mountain ranges, and DESERTS (9780778704997) surveys desert terrain. Each book includes an index, glossary, and appealing color photos.

Scholastic, Inc.
557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012-3999

Steve Setford's Discover More: Human Body (9780545667760, $15.99) provides a fine visual guide to the body and packs in hundreds of photos and artworks to compliment the science information within. Large-size print accompanies a fine visual exploration that goes into detail about the skeleton, skin, circulatory system, and more. Many an adult will find this a fascinating read, packed with color and contemporary photos. Discover More: Birds (9780545667739, $7.99) is for new readers and offers 32 pages filled with eye-catching bird drawings, photos, and discussions of bird natural history. From flightless birds to birds of prey, the discussions are simple, clear, and designed to attract young reader attention and interest. Discover More: Ancient Egypt (9780545627399, $12.99) features objects and buildings from ancient Egypt, exploring daily life and the ways in which Egyptians handled life and death alike. 80 pages packed with colorful history is supported by a free digital companion book with true stories about Egyptian mummies for further details, making this a winning exploration.

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

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