where a children's librarian delivers the goods

Monthly Archives: July 2012

Halibut Jackson is so shy, he makes special outfits to blend in wherever he goes.  He manages to blend in at the park, the market, the library, even his own easy chair!  But his plan unravels when he’s invited to the queen’s grand birthday party…

The art is charming and infinitely clever.  Halibut is as endearing as they come.

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Adorable baby chimpanzee, Bobo is on the hunt. It seems every animal in the jungle is getting a big hug except him. With every cuddling pair he passes, his one word of text becomes louder and sadder as he wails, “HUG!” At last, his mother appears, running toward him yelling, “BOBO!” He runs to her, crying, “MOMMY!” and gets the biggest hug ever.

Alborough’s skilled marker pen drawings are lush, detailed and beautiful. His measured choice of three words of text is brilliantly executed. This story bursts with feeling and charm.


An Old Bear dreams of his younger days and enjoys a fantastical romp through each of the four seasons. When he awakes from hibernation and walks out into a gorgeous spring day, it takes him a moment to realize that he’s not dreaming anymore.

An endearing story, made extraordinary by Henkes’ stunning art. His watercolor and ink illustrations capture the beauty of each season in a breathtaking, magical way. The whimsical text and dreamy quality of the scenes elevate its charm even further.


Strega Nona, or “Grandma Witch” cures everyone’s ails in her town of Calabria, Italy with her potions and spells.  Big Anthony, her helper, is put in charge when Strega Nona takes a trip out of town.  She warns him not to touch her magic pasta pot, but he’s too foolish to resist.

Hoping to impress the town’s people, he fills the magic pot with pasta by repeating the secret chant he’d overheard her say.  Unfortunately, he missed a key detail and the pot pumps out enough food to cover the entire town!  Strega Nona returns just in time to stop the pasta flowing and hand Big Anthony a fork, saying, “The punishment must fit the crime.”


A king and queen should be full of joy and contentment, but they both feel a strange pain that worsens every day. Then a peddler’s magic spectacles reveal a red thread pulling at each of their hearts. The king and queen know they must follow the thread.


A dozen poems celebrate the many shades of African American skin. The tone is celebratory, joyful, proud. The free verse unfurls naturally, beautifully. Lusciously illustrated by Floyd Cooper, he fills every inch with an almost tangible warmth–both in the hues and the play of sunlight or moonlight on the children’s luminous faces.


With his eating stool, eating spoon and gigantic eating mouth, Finnigin the hungry skeleton travels the land, ever looking for a feast.  His reputation as the biggest eater of all proceeds him, and the local monsters shun his requests for morsels to add to his bone soup.  Will he somehow persuade them to contribute to his thin broth?



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