Sunday, September 27, 2015

You're Here for a Reason written and illustrated by Nancy Tillman

This week the United States hosted a visit from the Pope.  His message was clear to me--kindness to all and that everyone has a responsibility in this world.  Then I came across Nancy Tillman's new picture book which beautifully illustrates his message.

You're Here for a Reason by Nancy Tillman grabbed my attention as soon as I saw the cover.  Then I read it and realized it is perfect book for everyone to read to reaffirm our reason for being.  It teaches the youngest among us that they are special and important with out being preachy. There is nothing worse than a book that is wordy and preachy....

I love the illustrations they are soft and soothing. I also love the global feeling it presents---dare I say "diverse".

Besides being a great read aloud book for either bedtime or story time---in a classroom or bedroom....this book also makes a perfect gift. I would give this to a child starting school or even a grown up starting a new is meant to inspire and reassure that all are important.  To that end it would be a wonderful graduation gift too.

In this world where there are so many people being bullied and abused this book reminds us that we can rise up from our circumstances because everyone is "Here for a Reason".....beautifully done!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

A Curious Tale of the In-Between by Lauren DeStefano

A Curious Tale of the In-Between by Lauren DeStefano is a wonderful new book for children ages 8-12.  Although it would be a great book for anyone over the age of 12 who loves a good mystery/ghost story.

 I love this book. I loved it from the first paragraph.  This is the kind of book I would have loved when I was young.   The main character Pram is the kind of girl I would have wanted to be friends with when I was little.

Lauren DeStefano has woven a tale that is a spellbinding page turner.  It may be a little dark for some but that is all part of it's charm.  It has an instant classic feel about it, a must have new book for those who love magic, ghosts and mystery!

Monday, September 14, 2015

I Am Yoga by Susan Verde illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds

I have officially only taken one Yoga class in my life. That being said I have done Yoga in my living room via my cable provider.  Which means that even if I am not doing the poses correctly I am hoping I am getting something out of them.

Years ago when I was a Children's Book Buyer I was presented with a book project that dealt with Yoga for children.  It was more than just a book but a program that had a non-book/video component.  Needless to say I thought it was interesting but from what I can recall it never got off the ground.  I think they were too ambitious in all that they wanted to do.

Fast forward to now and I find this very soothing book for children.

I Am Yoga written by Susan Verde and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds is a  new book that combines simple Yoga poses with sweet calming words that encourages a child's creativity.  The text as written by Ms Verde, a certified Yoga instructor, is lyrical and soothing which combined with Mr Reynolds illustrations makes a wonderful book to be read again and again.  I think this is a great book for story time as it can be very interactive.  I can even envision it being read during a preschool or kindergarten gym class --- wouldn't that be great , books helping to encourage movement. This is a perfect introduction of Yoga for children.  The added bonus is the Author's note in the back of the book which also has brief descriptions of the poses used in the book.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Waiting by Kevin Henkes

                      Waiting written and illustrated by Caldecott medalist Kevin Henkes

It is that time of year again.  They summer is over and it is back to school time.  It seems like schools have been in back to school mode for weeks.  The school in my neighborhood starts tomorrow.

I have always been a very big fan of Kevin Henkes. What I love about his books is that they always seem different and new.  When I saw today's book I loved it just from the cover alone....when I realized it was a written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes I loved it even more. His books always have a comforting feel to them.

Waiting is the perfect read aloud book for a child. Most children I know have an impatience about them.  When my niece and nephews were small I would always tell them they needed to be patient.  They were always excited about something and wanted immediate gratification all the time.  I would play a game with them to see how long they could sit still. Needless to say it wasn't very long. They always grew tired of "waiting".

I wish I had this book to read to them. It is such a soothing and reassuring book filled with hope and expectation that I would have loved to read it to them over and over again.  I can see myself someday reading this to my great nephew sitting on a cozy couch.  This is also a perfect read aloud/story time book and an every night bedtime story. It is a must have new book for any age.  Mr Henkes has done it again writing an instant classic.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Boo-La-La Witch Spa by Samantha Berger illust by Isabel Roxas

It is Halloween time at  my shop in Sleepy Hallow NY. As you can imagine it is coming up on our busy season. I love looking at all the new merchandise that we have received, especially the books,

Boo-La-La Witch Spa by Samatha Berger and illustrated by Isabel Roxas is one that totally won me over. It has also been selling really well.

It is a really cute and sweet book about how Halloween is the biggest time of year for Witches so when it is over all the Witches need to relax....and what better way to relax than going to a spa.  I can totally relate to the story because I am my busiest during October and was thinking I would go to a spa when it is over when we received this book.  I love the rhyming and the clever spa treatments Ms Berger has devised like the "Broom Bristle Facials".  I also love the illustrations, there is a kind of nostalgic feel to them and yet at the same time they have a whimsical modern feel to them.  This is a great new book to share at this time of year....

As it has been very busy at work I haven't been posting as much as I would like but I am hoping to squeeze in one per week at least.

Remember I suggest books I really help make book buying easier....

Happy Fall!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Little Humans by Brandon Stanton

Whenever I am on Facebook someone is always posting a photo from Humans of New York. I think they are terrific and thought provoking.  Mr Stanton has totally captured the essence of what it means to be a New Yorker.  Totally wonderful, intriguing and quirky as only a New Yorker can be.

I was thrilled to come across his new book for children called
Little Humans.  I love this book.  Brandon Stanton takes his fantastic photos and makes a great children's book out of them. He creates a book that is perfect for the littlest among us. It is a great read aloud book as well as a learning book. Each photo has a description that fits it perfectly. I like how there are highlighted descriptive words that emphasize what is being seen in each photo.  I think my favorite is the photo that goes along with the phrase "super HERO tough" just cracked me up.  I hope this is the first of many books by Mr Stanton for children.  I see a board book version in his future. This is a must have book for any age.....

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

I know today's book is not necessarily a new title but I just finished reading it and wanted to share my thoughts.

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs is considered a Teen Novel.  I think it is much more than that.  I had heard about it but never read it.  Most recently learned that there is a sequel which I hope to read soon.  There is also a film being made with Tim Burton directing.  I stumbled across it in the library and at the last minute added it to my stack of books to check out.

I loved this book.  This is the kind of book I would have read and loved when I was a child/teenager.  The story starts out like any other teenage angst kind of story but quickly develops into the best kind fantasy story.  The kind that makes a reader feel that it could be true.  The characters are wonderful, I really loved the main character Jacob because he sounded like a typical teenage boy.

A long time ago I was part of a panel for the Children's Book Council called Not Just For Children Anymore.  As part of the panel we had to read a selection of children's books ~mostly young readers and Teen novels.  Once we were finished we then set out to decide whether or not "grown-ups" would enjoy them as well as children.  This book would have been on top of my list.  I really loved how Mr Riggs wove his story around an array of old photographs.  The photographs themselves are so interesting to look at that I  too would have wondered how they were made and if they were real.

I used to know someone who loved to take photographs.  He had rigged his own darkroom in a small bathroom in the house.  He also liked to experiment with his photos.  I remember one photo of what appeared to be  a young girl with a small person standing on her hand.  To create this illusion he said was all in the development. When I saw the photos in Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children I was reminded of the photos I saw when I was young.  Like I said I have always been fascinated by old photos.....they are glimpse into the past.  I wish this book had been around when I was young because it would have been one of my favorites.  I can't wait to read the sequel Hollow City.  These are must have books for anyone who loves a bit of fantasy tinged with spookiness....