professornana (professornana) wrote,

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It's Picture Book Monday!

I think taking breaks to read picture books and then writing about them here on the blog is one way I keep Mondays happy and sane. It was nice after grading 100 bibliographies (well, not 100, only 65) to sit and read some beautiful books. Here are the ones that rose to the top this time.

MONSTER PRINCESS by D. J. MacHale (yes, the one who does the Pendragon series) with illustrations by Alexandra Boiger ((Aladdin 2010) is the story of a gnome who, tired of living underground, heads up to t e surface to become a princess. Of course, the results are predictable (for adult readers): and she flees the ball and heads back home in tears. But there is a nice twist to this tale that ends with everyone living (of course) happily ever after. <455>

Julie Rawlinson and illustrator Tiphanee Beeke give readers a wonderful Christmas story in FLETCHER AND THE SNOWFLAKE CHRISTMAS (Greenwillow 2010). Fletcher worries that Santa will not be able to find the new home of his friends the rabbits. So Fletcher, along with his animal friends, make arrows out of sticks to show Santa how to get from the old warren to the new one. Snow eradicates the arrows, but Fletcher and his friends have a back up plan. <456>

LI'L RABBIT'S KWANZAA by Donna Washington with illustrations by Shane Evans (Katherine Tegen Books 2010) illustrates what happens when the youngest rabbit wants to ensure that his grandmother has a good kwanzaa. What can he do? As he searches for something to bring to grandmother, other animals see his desire to make a good kwanzaa and help out. This book illustrates the principles of Kwanzaa (the Nguzo Saba) and is an excellent example of archetypes for young readers, too. <457>

I love Anita Lobel's books and NINI LOST AND FOUND is no exception. (Knopf 2010). Nini, the cat, escapes one day and has a marvelous adventure until night begins to fall. Now the adventure seems more dangerous than Nini had in mind. Lobel knows her cats. Scout had an "adventure" one day and sticks pretty close to home now, too. What works so beautifully here is the counterpositioning of simple text with incredibly detailed illustrations. Nini stands out with her black and white coat amid all of the lovely colors of outdoors in daytime. At night, she feels too vulnerable as well. <458>

Chris Plehal and illustrator James Bernadin team up for YES, VIRGINIA, THERE IS A SANTA CLAUS (Harper 2010), a retelling of the story from the last century when a young girl wanted proof that there was indeed a Santa Claus as many of her friends were telling her he did not exist. A reproduction of the news story appears at the end of this book. <459>
Tags: picture books
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