Monday, August 31, 2009

Sisters Who Save The Day!

Kathy Tucker's retelling of a classic Chinese Folk Tale — The Seven Chinese Sisters has mesmerized Madeline. We've only had it two days, and I honestly couldn't guess how many times I've read it. She loves it.

And, why wouldn't she? In this tale, seven sisters live in a small house in the Chinese countryside (who knows where the parents are...) and they range in age from young woman to baby sister (who can't yet talk). Each sister has a special skill: for example, First Sister rides a scooter (cool!) with skill and super speed, Fourth Sister can talk to dogs, and Sixth Sister can make the most delicious noodle soup... which attracts a hungry dragon, who steals plump little Seventh Sister.

The girls use their special skills to outsmart and outmaneuver the dragon, and that's not even the end of the story... Beautifully illustrated by Grace Lin, this book will likely end up in our permanent collection.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Animalia — A Beautiful Alphabet

Graeme Base's Animalia is simply an amazing alphabet book. The rhyming prose is clever, funny, and full of rich vocabulary, and the illustrations are so beautiful. It's great fun to find all the things on the pages that begin with each letter... dragon, diamonds, donuts, dagger, dinosaur, dromedary... it's a visual and literary adventure. A feast for the eyes and ears!

Sadly, we have to return this to the library as there are many holds on it, but it's definitely a keeper, so I just need to get myself a copy soon!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Book Bag: August

August was all about folk and fairy tales, heroines, science, dinosaurs and Diego... the kids have also discovered Kipper and adore his tales, and I like the Kipper DVDs because the segments are about 12 minutes each (easy to dole out one or two "shows" without it being 40-60 mins). I also found several gems that have become favorites already... ****Marks our super-duper-extra faves, below!
  1. Vasilissa the beautiful : a Russian folktale / adapted by Elizabeth Winthrop****Baba Yaga in all her scary glory, Vasilissa's tale (like Cinderella but she saves herself) and gorgeous illustrations
  2. How the Amazon queen fought the prince of Egypt / Tamara Bower
  3. Diego saves the sloth! / by Alexis Romay
  4. Mrs. Wishy-Washy makes a splash! / Joy Cowley
  5. Shape by shape / Suse MacDonald. ****Shapes that slowly reveal a Brachiosaurus! How could you go wrong with this one??
  6. Diego and Papi to the rescue / by Wendy Wax
  7. Go Diego Go! The great dinosaur rescue
  8. Diego's wolf pup rescue / adapted by Christine Ricci
  9. Diego's safari rescue / adapted by Ligiah Villalobos
  10. A humpback whale tale / adapted by Justin Spelvin
  11. Go Diego go! Underwater mystery [videorecording]
  12. Dinosaur roar! / Paul & Henrietta Stickland.
  13. What lives in a shell? / by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld
  14. Air is all around you / by Franklyn M. Branley
  15. Starfish / by Edith Thacher Hurd ****I LOVE all of these Science for preschoolers series books, but Madeline especially loves this one!
  16. A nest full of eggs / by Priscilla Belz Jenkins
  17. Come to tea! : fun tea party themes, recipes, crafts, etiquette, and more / Stephanie Dunnewind ****An excellent book. Would make a great gift for any young girl who likes tea parties
  18. Kipper. Amazing discoveries! [videorecording]
  19. Kipper. Kipper helps out [videorecording]
  20. ABC / by Bruno Munari. ****Wonderful illustrations
  21. Bruno Munari's zoo / Bruno Munari
  22. Pictures from our vacation / Lynne Rae Perkins
  23. Mama played baseball / David A. Adler ****A mom who supports her family playing baseball while her husband is off fighting in WWII - great story, great history, amazing illustrations.
  24. At night / Jonathan Bean
  25. Dinosaur discoveries / by Gail Gibbons
  26. Dinosaurs! / by Gail Gibbons
  27. A child's day : an alphabet of play / Ida Pearle
  28. Jambo means hello; Swahili alphabet book / by Muriel Feelings
  29. The seven Chinese sisters / written by Kathy Tucker ; illustrated by Grace Lin ****I can't count the times I've read this one. Madeline adores it, and it's a great tale of girls who outsmart, and out-tough, a dragon!
  30. Monkey world / Matthew Porter ****Wonderfully poetic prose, beautiful illustrations and creative occupations!
  31. Animalia / Graeme Base ****Creative and breathtaking. A feast for the eyes.

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