Book Reviews Children’s Book Reviews

  • My Best Friend is as Sharp as a Pencil

    My Best Friend is as Sharp as a Pencil

    As children, most of us endured a litany of questions about school from Grandma, or other relative, such as “What is your teacher like?” or “Who is your best friend?” Well, the subject of this book decides to answer these questions by showing Grandma the answers using related objects from her (or his — the gender is somewhat ambiguous) house. These “found” objects are depicted in the book using still photography so readers will see them as they really are. For example, when the girl describes her teacher, a real-life picture of candy is next to the statement…

  • Zoomer


    This clever new book is about a family of suburbanized canines whose youngest seemingly refuses to go to school one morning. Poor “Dad” is left to tend to his three energetic “sons” and has to get them ready while “Mom” is away. The youngest, Zoomer, declares that he’s not going to school that day because he has too much to do.

  • How Rocket Learned to Read

    How Rocket Learned to Read

    Rocket, a cuddly dog, loved to play and play. One day, he meets a little yellow bird, who is a teacher and asks Rocket to be her student. At first, Rocket isn’t at all interested in learning and chooses to take his morning nap instead. But he quickly becomes captivated by a story the bird reads and joins her “class.” Like any beginning reader, Rocket first learns the alphabet and the sounds each letter makes. When winter comes, the little bird heads south but Rocket keeps practicing. The return of spring brings a charming reunion for Rocket and the bird as they snuggle in with a stack of books to…

  • Willoughby & the Moon

    Willoughby & the Moon

    Children have fantasized about the moon for centuries and this book tells the tale of a young boy, Willoughby, who goes in search of the moon one night when it “disappears” from outside his bedroom window. He discovers that his closet is a gateway to a lunar land, which he bravely enters. He meets a giant snail who employs his help to find his favorite silver ball. As he courageously leads the snail across the moon’s terrain, they discover an old moon buggy and space pod, which they use in their search. They come across a cave and the boy convinces the scared snail to enter, where they find other…

  • 1 Zany Zoo

    1 Zany Zoo

    New children’s book author, Lori Degman, gives us a fun, rhyming tale of what happens in a zoo after hours. This book tells the story of a boy who sneaks inside while waiting on the entrance line, and we see through his eyes how our favorite zoo animals frolic when no one is watching. Using a counting build from one to 10, the story starts with one “fearless fox” who grabs the zookeeper’s keys, then moves to two “sporty zebras” wearing goggles who give the walrus a whisker trim, and so on up to 10 “rowdy bears” that lead the ultimate zoo parade. The ruckus comes to an…

  • The Fox and the Hen

    The Fox and the Hen

    The retelling of classic fables is a recent trend, and this new book re-imagines the tale of a small naive animal, in this case a hen, who is out-smarted by a wily fox. Unsuspecting Henrietta Hen falls for Red Fox’s offer to trade her very first egg for a “tasty, juicy worm.” Her fellow farm animals are outraged and try to help Henrietta get her egg back by offering to trade farm-fresh treats such as cow’s milk and goat’s cheese. Red Fox resists and taunts Henrietta by revealing his plans for cooking her precious egg. The determined little hen does not give up and devises a clever plan…

  • Biblioburro


    This new book features the true story of a young man, named Luis Soriana, who lives in the jungles of Columbia and loves books. But, he had so many that they took up too much space in his house, and his wife asked him to do something about it. He came up with the idea to share his books with kids in poor regions and set out with his burros who he called the “Biblioburro” or “Burro Library.” Every week they travel to a different village and encounter some challenges, such as a stream which one burro hesitates to cross, and even danger as they are held up by a robber looking for money. (The…

  • A Boy Had a Mother Who Bought Him a Hat

    A Boy Had a Mother Who Bought Him a Hat

    Moms love to buy things for their children, and this new release is a fun, rhyming tale of a young boy who joyfully accumulates and wears all the items his mom buys him throughout the course of his adventurous days. Starting with the hat woolly and red, the young lad collects a mouse for whom he builds a house, then new shoes with laces for going to places, and so on until he has nearly a dozen items he’s toting around. The boy carries his collection to the beach, grandma’s house, the doctor’s office and many other places and activities. He ends up back home and, after a brisk wind blows his hat…

  • Not All Princesses Dress in Pink

    Not All Princesses Dress in Pink

    Who says a girl must wear a fancy pink dress to be a princess? This book is a celebration of all girls and their varied interests and styles. Whether soccer cleats are her shoe of choice or she prefers dancing in the rain and mud rather than on a stage, the rhyming verses in this charming book confirm that every girl can tap into her inner princess. Each verse ends with “...and a sparkly crown,” clearly implying that girls, like all of us, are not easily categorized. And, as we all know, even the most rugged girls may find it hard to resist a little bling!

  • The Eensy Weensy Spider Freaks Out!

    The Eensy Weensy Spider Freaks Out!

    A trend in adult literature has been to take a classic tale and give it a “what if” twist. Troy Cummings has done just that with the classic rhyme “The Eensy Weensy Spider” and his first children’s book. His story dares to ask and answer the question “What if the Eensy Weensy Spider was too afraid to climb back up the water spout?” It’s possible, right?