A Wynk, a Blynk and a Nod to Books Suitable for Holiday Gift-Giving
The holidays are right around the corner, and chances are you’re looking for great gift ideas. You’ve come to the right place. There’s nothing like a classic book, and this year there’s a bumper crop of beautiful new anniversary editions sure to make adults nostalgic and kids engaged.
Reissued Classics and Anniversary Editions
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
Robinson’s classic story of the Herdman children first appeared in 1971. A picture book version is also available.
The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander
Originally published in 1964, The Book of Three is the first book in the Newbery Award winning fantasy series.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, illus. by Quentin Blake
Can Charlie Bucket really be fifty years old? Yes he is, and everyone can celebrate by reading this 50th anniversary edition printed on candy colored pages.
The Christmas Alphabet: Deluxe 20th Anniversary Edition by Robert Sabuda
This book launched Sabuda’s career in 1994. The anniversary edition of this famous pop-up classic is a joy to open.
Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed by Eileen Christelow
Included in this 25th anniversary edition is a free audio download, a “How to Draw a Monkey” activity, and music and lyrics for the much-loved song.
Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney, illus. by Anita Jeram
First published in the United Kingdom in 1994, this cherished tale now celebrates twenty years.
Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh
This 50th anniversary edition features a map of Harriet’s spy route and a section in which grown-ups, including many writers, share their feelings about the book.
James Herriot’s Treasury for Children by James Herriot, illus. by Ruth Brown and Peter Barrett
Originally published in […]
A Wynk, a Blynk and a Nod to Books about Autumn and Halloween
Where did the summer go? It’s hard to believe that we’re already thinking about Fall and Halloween. The crop of new books is simply “spooktacular,” and many of our old favorites are sure to make for ghoulish fun. So, enjoy! Happy Haunting ….. and Happy Reading!
At the Old Haunted House by Helen Ketteman, illus. by Nate Wragg
Ketteman, author of Heat Wave, one of our all-time favorites, gives us a Halloween rendition of the classic rhyme “Over in the Meadow.” From goblins to vampires to bats, the creatures increase in number from one to ten. This is a stand-out begging to be read aloud.
Dog and Bear: Tricks and Treats by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
Dog and Bear are back, just in time for Halloween. They prepare costumes, receive trick-or-treaters, and go trick-or-treating themselves. Simple text and illustrations make for a fun book for beginning readers.
Fall Leaves by Loretta Holland, illus. by Elly MacKay
This poetic picture book captures both the art and science of the change in seasons. The ink and photography illustrations are visually appealing. This book can be used on a variety of levels. Instructions for making leaf prints are included.
The Ghosts Go Haunting by Helen Ketteman, illus. by Adam Record
A second book by Ketteman is worth noting. This time the rhythm is that of “The Ants Go Marching” and provides another fun read aloud.
Llama Llama Trick or Treat by Anna Dewdney
In this board book, Dewdney’s Llama Llama is excited over choosing a Halloween costume and going trick-or-treating.
Little Boo by Stephen Wunderli, illus. by Tim Zeltner
A tiny pumpkin seed wants to be scary but must wait until it grows into a pumpkin and Halloween arrives. […]
A Wynk, a Blynk and a Nod to Books about School
August is coming to an end, and with that comes the start of a new school year. For many children this can be an anxious time. We’ve included lots of books to hopefully make the transition a little easier and calm those first day jitters. And for the seasoned pro, we’ve included some school stories that are just for fun!
New Books about School
B. Bear and Lolly Off to School by A.A. Livingston, illus. by Joey Chou
Evidently Baby Bear and Goldilocks became best friends after their famous encounter because now they are embarking on another adventure, their first day of school together. Children should enjoy finding other fairy tale characters in the illustrations.
Chu’s First Day of School by Neil Gaiman, illus. by Adam Rex
In this sequel to the New York Times best-seller, Chu’s Day, the sneeze-prone little panda is nervous about his first day of school and worried that others won’t like him. Chu’s teacher is nice and the other animals at school are friendly, but too much chalk dust leads to an explosive end.
Dinosaur vs. School by Bob Shea
In this sixth Dinosaur vs. book by Shea, Dinosaur faces his newest foe … school. The cartoon style illustrations provide kid-friendly humor.
Dinotrux Go to School by Chris Gall
In this beginning reader, it’s the first day of school for the Dinotrux and they are worried. But when you’re part dinosaur and part truck, school can be lots of fun!
Dog Days of School by Kelly DiPucchio, illus. by Brian Biggs
This story is reminiscent of Freaky Friday. Instead of going to school, Charlie wishes he could change places with his dog, Norman. For an entire week, Norman goes to […]
A Wynk, a Blynk and a Nod to Books about Summer Fun
Summer was always a lot of fun for us growing up, and it still is today. School’s out, the weather’s great, and opportunities abound for lots of outdoor activities: a trip to the pool or beach, going camping or hiking, or simply enjoying a summer picnic! Get your summer off to a great start with some great books that capture the essence of the season. Our suggestions of books, both new and old, will hopefully make you want to explore and enjoy summer all the more.
New Summer Books
Created by the American Museum of Natural History, this board book contains 26 animals from the sea. Beautiful color photographs illustrate each letter. Brief facts are included as well.
Camp Rex by Molly Idle
Cordelia and her troop of dino-scouts enjoy a camping trip in the great outdoors. This book features the same characters from Idle’s Tea Rex.
The Camping Trip by Catherine Hapka, illus. by Anne Kennedy
In this tenth book in the Pony Scouts series, friends Meg, Jill, and Annie are spending summer vacation with their ponies, and it is Meg’s first time camping. A great choice for early readers.
Cheers for a Dozen Ears: A Summer Crop of Counting by Felicia Sanzari Chernesky, illus. by Susan Swan
This is the second collaboration between author and illustrator in which they pair a season with an early learning concept, in this case counting. Their earlier work was entitled Pick a Circle, Gather Squares: A Fall Harvest of Shapes. The collage illustrations capture both the seasonal and counting concepts.
Duck & Goose Go to the Beach by Tad Hills (e-book)
In this latest Duck & Goose escapade, the tenth to be exact, they […]
A Wynk, a Blynk and a Nod to Books about Baseball
With Great American Ballpark, home of the Cincinnati Reds, sitting practically in our backyard, paying tribute to books about America’s favorite pastime seems especially fitting for this time of year. Our bases are loaded with lots of good reads. No bloopers here, all are sure to be a home run! As always, we’ve included a few backdoor sliders at the end.
New Baseball Books
Ballpark by Eileen R. Meyer, illus. by Carlynn Whitt
Meyer describes a day spent at the ballpark by a grandfather and his grandson. Colorful illustrations and rhyming text bring the sights and sounds of the game to life
The Bambino and Me by Zachary Hyman, illus. by Zachary Pullen
A nostalgic look at the greatest baseball player of all time, George Herman “Babe” Ruth, sets the stage for this engaging read. Ten year old George Henry Alexander is excited to be attending his first real baseball game and the opportunity to see his hero. Though related as a memoir, the story is entirely fictional. Actor Jason Alexander’s lively, fun-filled CD recording of the story is included.
Barbed Wire Baseball by Marissa Moss, illus. by Yuko Shimizu
This is the story of Kenichi Zenimura, who built a baseball legacy in the Japanese-American internment camps during World War II. He built a ball field, complete with a leveled, grassed-in diamond and bleachers, to raise the spirits and self-esteem of his fellow detainees. It is interesting to note that the illustrations in the book were made with Japanese calligraphy brush and ink.
Baseball Animals by Christopher Jordan Fenn
This fun and engaging book, an official MLB publication, introduces young readers to each team named after an animal. Children follow clues and guess […]
A Wynk, a Blynk, and a Nod to Books about Spring
Spring is right around the corner, and with the winter we’ve had, it can’t get here soon enough! We’re looking forward to those first signs of spring and all that comes with it, from planting the first seeds in the garden to listening to songbirds to celebrating April holidays. We’ve added lots of new books on these topics, and as always, have listed many of our old favorites. Enjoy……and think spring!
New Spring Books
Animals in Spring by Martha E. H. Rustad
This set of books by Rustad also includes People in Spring, Plants in Spring, and Weather in Spring. Aimed at early readers, the books include full color photographs, a glossary, and internet sites.
Biscuit in the Garden by Alyssa Satin Capucilli, illus. by Pat. Schories
Biscuit, the puppy, explores all the wonderful things in the garden. This book is part of the I Can Read! series. The Biscuit books are exceptionally good at getting children to read, but they also include information on teaching adults how to read them to their children.
Chester’s Colorful Easter Eggs by Theresa Smythe
This simple Easter story provides an introduction to colors, as Chester the rabbit decorates and hides Easter eggs for his friends. The collage illustrations are quite appealing.
The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes, as Told to Jenifer by DuBose Heyward, illus. by Marjorie Flack
The 75th anniversary edition of this book has just been released. Originally published in 1939, this story remains a classic Easter tale. The Country Bunny’s twenty-one children help her to become an Easter Bunny. The author of this tale actually wrote the novel Porgy on which the Porgy and Bess musical is based.
Flowers and Showers: A Spring […]
A Wynk, a Blynk, and a Nod to Women’s History Month
Before 1970, women’s history was rarely the subject of serious consideration. However, two significant factors contributed to its emergence as a topic worthy of study. The women’s movement of the sixties caused women to examine their exclusion from traditional American history textbooks. Second, the study of history in general was being transformed, and women’s history was a part of this movement that ultimately transformed the study of history in the United States. History had traditionally meant political history – a study of the key political events and of the leaders, primarily men, who influenced them. However, by the 1970’s, social history began replacing the older style.
Women’s History Month in the United States began as a small-town school event, “Women’s History Week,” in Sonoma County, California in 1978. The week that was selected included March 8, International Women’s Day. In 1981, Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah and Representative Barbara Mikulski of Maryland co-sponsored a joint Congressional resolution proclaiming a national Women’s History Week. In 1987, after much lobbying by the National Women’s History Project (NWHP), Congress expanded the celebration to a full month, and March was declared Women’s History Month. Between 1988 and 1994, Congress passed additional resolutions requesting and authorizing the President to proclaim March of each year as Women’s History Month. Since 1995, U. S. Presidents have issued annual proclamations designating March as Women’s History Month.
The NWHP, founded in 1980, remains a national clearinghouse for multicultural women’s history information. Each year this organization selects a theme that highlights achievements by distinguished women in specific fields, from medicine and the environment to art and politics. The theme for 2014 is “Celebrating Women of Character, […]
A Wynk, a Blynk, and a Nod to African American History Books
African American History Month, or Black History Month, as it is often referred to, is observed every February in the United States. We thought it might be interesting to take a look at the history behind this annual celebration. Negro History Week was first conceived in 1925 by Harvard educated historian, Carter G. Woodson, who founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH). The event was first celebrated during a week in February in 1926 that included the birthdays of both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, two great Americans who played a prominent role in shaping black history. The response was overwhelming, and by 1950, Negro History Week had become a central part of African American life. Progress had also been made in bringing more Americans to embrace the celebration. In 1976, our nation’s bicentennial, the celebration was expanded to a full month. President Gerald Ford urged Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.” That year, fifty years after the first celebration, ASNLH held the first African American History Month. Since 1976, each American president has issued African American History Month proclamations, and Woodson’s association – now the Association for the Study of African American Life and History – continues to promote the study of African American history all year. With February approaching, we thought it fitting to take a look at some noteworthy new books on the topic. And, as always, we’ve included a list of old favorites, too good to miss.
The Cart That Carried Martin by Eve Bunting, illus. by Don Tate
A Wynk, a Blynk, and a Nod to Snowy and Wintry Books
With winter’s early arrival here in the Midwest, we thought it fitting to showcase snowy and wintry titles this month. We, of course, have many favorites that we have loved over the years. And, there are lots of new books worthy of mentioning. However, one book in particular, is at the top of our list, and undoubtedly, it will be at the top of yours! Snowflakes Fall is a collaborative effort of Newbery medalist Patricia MacLachlan and prolific children’s illustrator and author Stephen Kellogg. MacLachlan and Kellogg are longtime friends, however, this is the first collaboration between them. Both have visited the Kenton County Public Library in the past, so we have even had the pleasure of meeting them. We have thoroughly loved and enjoyed their works over the years including MacLachlan’s Sarah, Plain and Tall and Kellogg’s Pinkerton books among many others.
Snowflakes Fall was written to honor the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings last December. Kellogg, who now lives in New York City, lived for 35 years with his family in Sandy Hook, a village within the town of Newtown, Connecticut. He was very active in the school and library community there, and the news of 12/14/12 was utterly devastating to him. In his words, he wished that he could “do something creative as a counterbalance to that.” Snowflakes Fall was born of that idea. He and MacLachlan used the image of the snowflake to highlight the uniqueness of individuals as well as the healing power of nature and time. The idea of using a snowflake was actually inspired by the Connecticut Parent Teacher Student Association’s drive which encouraged […]
So….you’ve decided to give us a nod. We’re glad you did!
As children’s literature enthusiasts, our blog name pays homage to the classic children’s poem from 1889, “Wynken, Blynken, and Nod,” by Eugene Field.
Cecilia Horn is currently the Juvenile Collection Development Librarian for the Kenton County Public Library in northern Kentucky (greater Cincinnati). Terri Diebel is a Children’s Librarian with the same library system. Both hold Masters of Library Science degrees and have worked in the field of Children’s Literature for many years. In recent years, they have collaborated on presentations at local, state, and national library and literature conferences.
Children’s literature is our passion. Through this blog, we hope to share that enthusiasm and love of children’s books. We are somewhat nostalgic in that we have our favorite books from the past, treasures in the library attic, so to speak, yet we enjoy reviewing new books, hopefully finding new gems along the way.
Christmas from Heaven: The True Story of the Berlin Candy Bomber by Tom Brokaw, illus.by Robert T. Barrett
This is the true story of Lt. Hal Halverson who, during Christmas 1944, enlisted crew members to donate their rations of candy to distribute to the children of war-torn Germany dropping candy parachutes via cargo planes. The operation grew to include candy donations from around the world. Halverson became known as the Candy Bomber. The book is accompanied by documentary photos and DVD narrated by Brokaw. Instructions for making a candy parachute are included.
The Christmas Wish by Lori Evert, photos by Per Breiehagen
The husband and wife team of Evert and Breiehagen photographed their daughter Anja dressed in full Nordic regalia, complete with a cute red gnomic hat. Anja dreams of becoming one of Santa’s elves and […]