Olive the Other Reindeer

Do you remember when Ramona Quimby (from author Beverly Cleary) suggested to her father that he turn on the "dawnzer light"?  Her family laughed so hard because she misunderstood the words to the national anthem - "by the dawn's early light." Olive, the dog, has a similar problem. As she walks through town during the... Continue Reading →

Thank You, Sarah

Children may think that Americans have celebrated Thanksgiving since the very first Thanksgiving the Pilgrims celebrated with Squanto and his friends. While in one sense this is true, Thanksgiving wasn't established as a national holiday until much later in history. Thank You, Sarah by Laurie Halse Anderson explains the history of Thanksgiving as a holiday,... Continue Reading →

Frankenstein

Disclaimer: I do not like monsters.  I do not like horror, vampires, gore or Halloween. Which is why I am surprised that I'm actually writing about a book with monsters and vampires.  But know plenty of people love Halloween and all that accompanies the holiday, so when I found this book, I thought I'd include... Continue Reading →

The Country Bunny

I'm not sure if Du Bose Heyward wrote The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes for children, or for their mothers. The Country Bunny is a sweet tale of a little girl bunny from the country who dreams of becoming one of the five Easter Bunnies. As a child, all the other bunnies laugh... Continue Reading →

Great Joy

Kate DiCamillo, the author who brought us Because of Winn-Dixie, The Tiger Rising, and other great books, has now ventured into the picture book category. And nailed it. Great Joy tells the story of Frances, who is greatly concerned for the monkey and an organ grinder, who appears on the street below her apartment. She... Continue Reading →

The Peterkins’ Christmas

The Peterkins were a large family who lived long ago. They had a good friend, whom they called "The Lady from Philadelphia," whose kindness and wisdom often saved the family from disaster when their silliness got out of hand. Often, but not always. And the Peterkins' silliness makes for some delightful stories. (You can read... Continue Reading →

The True Gift

In The True Gift by Patricia MacLachlan, Lily and Liam are glad to be at their grandparents' farm, preparing for Christmas.  They are looking forward to reading lots of books, visiting the "lilac library" in town, and baking Christmas cookies. But then Liam spots the White Cow in the meadow at Gran and Grandpa's farm. ... Continue Reading →

An Orange for Frankie

In the modern age of consumerism and materialism at Christmas, Patricia Polacco's An Orange for Frankie tells a beautiful story of gratefulness and generosity. Based upon Polacco's own family history, the picture book tells the story of Frankie, the youngest boy in a large family.  It's close to Christmas during the Great Depression, and the... Continue Reading →

The Third Gift

How many times have you heard the Christmas story, and the gifts of the wise men from the East?  How many times have you wondered, "what exactly is myrrh?" The Third Gift by Linda Sue Park is beautifully illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline, and tells the story of a young boy who is learning his father's... Continue Reading →

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