Tuesday, June 14, 2011

New Picturebooks

Picturebooks are  my favorite books to leaf through when they come into the store.  These three books came in this week and it's impossible for me to pick a favorite.  

If Rocks Could Sing: A Discovered Alphabet

by Leslie McGuirk
Tricycle Press, Random House Kids
I'm often surprised at how literal some young children an be. If Rocks Could Sing: A Discovered Alphabet, will challenge these children, asking them to see subjects in seemingly abstract rocks. If the alphabet rocks were spotted on the beach, some might pass them by, but Leslie McGurik places them with text, and their purpose is immediately apparent. Other found rocks, which she uses in the illustrations for each letter, might be overlooked if not for the props and text McGuirk uses to hint at their role. Some children see subjects in rocks, leaves, and clouds already- If a Rock Could Sing will validate their creativity. For less visual children, If Rocks Could Sing will encourage them to really look at the abstract, and challenge their preconceptions. Ages 4-8

Edwin Speaks Up
by April Stevens illustrated by Sophie Blackwell
Schwartz & Wade Books, Random House Kids:
I'll admit it, I have to pick up every Sophie Blackwell bo
ok I see. Her combination of pencil and watercolor is soft, yet her colors are strong, her quirky and odd with fun details. The candy palette of Edwin Speaks Up is a mix of bright funky colors and softer shades that brings flair to her 50s inspired costumes and cars. The story, written by April Stevens, follows an absent-minded mother and her brood of children as they trek to the supermarket. The children, all but little Edwin, roll and tumble, wrestling about, while the mother forgets one thing after another- and no one listens to little Edwin's babble. But astute young readers will quickly decipher Edwin's messages, bringing laughter with each line.Ages 4-8

Blackout by John Rocco
When the city experiences a blackout, one family, and eventually the entire neighborhood, learns the importance of unplugging and participating. From seeing the stars to having a party on the street with the entire neighborhood, Blackout celebrates friends and family. And one family learns that you don’t need a blackout to enjoy time together.
John Rocco tells his story in a comic-panel format. His illustrations, and even the font, reference Sendak’s In the Night Kitchen, though his illustrations certainly have their own flair. Ages 5-10
-Marika McCoola

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