Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

The True Story of Zippy Chippy

Perfect Picture Book Friday

I didn’t expect The True Story of Zippy Chippy: The Little Horse That Couldn’t (North-South Books, 2020) by Artie Bennett and illustrated by Dave Szalay to make me laugh out loud, but it did. Who’d have thought a true story about a loser could be so fun? And touching?

Zippy Chippy was a racehorse descended from legend racehorses, who couldn’t win a race. He even lost a 40 yard race against a human baseball player! He retired after losing 100 races, yet somehow his popularity has grown.

Definitely read the back matter after the story. It’s so fascinating.

Read the author’s amusing bio here. And read about Artie’s other books here.

You can find the illustrator’s bio here where you’ll find out he’s also an author. There are lots of sample illustrations on his home page. I like many of his other illustrations here, too.

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Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

You Loves Ewe!

Perfect Picture Book Friday

You Loves Ewe! (Clarion Books, 2019) is a wacky story written and illustrated by Cece Bell.

Donkey gets really confused by language–especially homonyms–so when Yam introduces him to a sheep named Ewe, everything is confusing. I love how Donkey thinks he must be cute and fluffy. And then there’s romance.

Kids will get a kick out of this story.

And the earlier book I Yam a Donkey.

Last month I recommended another book by Cece here.

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Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

In a Jar

Perfect Picture Book Friday

In a Jar (G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2020) by Deborah Marcero is a delightful book of magical remembrances and friendship. And it’s about collecting, which kids love to do. I love the feel of the illustrations, too.

Llewellyn collects things in jars. These jars remind him of “all the wonderful things” he has seen and done. One evening he collects “cherry light into his jars.” (I so want to be able to do this.) And gives one jar of light to Evelyn. The two become friends and collect together. Then she moves away. “With Evelyn gone, Llewellyn’s heart felt like an empty jar.” See how he solves this.

This book reminds me a lot of Button and Bundle by Gretchen McLellan. See an interview with the author here. The two books make good companion stories.

Author/illustrator Deborah Marcero has written and/or illustrated other books. Read about them here.

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Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

No Party Poopers

Perfect Picture Book Friday

It’s not out till June, but you’ll want to check out No Party Poopers (little bee books, 2020) by Gretchen McLellan and illustrated by Lucy Semple.

Two friends want to have a party, but everyone bear suggests, panda has an excuse why they shouldn’t be invited. Rhinos? Might pop the balloons. Peacocks? Show offs. Pigs? Hog all the honey buns. PAWSitively no party poopers allowed! But who’s the real party pooper?

Both in text and art this humorous tale will be fun for children and adults. And don’t we all have someone in our lives who finds the negative in everything? I love what bear finally does when panda has turned down every idea. This book could also be used to teach about acceptance and differences.

Check out author Gretchen McLellan’s other books here and read about her here. I love her sense of humor.

Illustrator Lucy Semple is from the UK. Read about her here and check out some of her work here. I love her use of vibrant colors.

Click on the publisher’s link to see some inside spreads.

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Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

Let’s Dance!

Perfect Picture Book Friday

Let’s Dance! (Boyds Mill & Kane, 2020) by Valerie Bolling and illustrated by Maine Diaz has recently danced out into the market. I love the simplicity of the rhythmic language contrasting with the beautiful details in the illustrations that together highlight different types of dances. It’s very difficult to pick a favorite spread.

There’s breakdance, West Africa’s kuku, line dance, Cuba’s cha-cha, ballet, Irish step dance, and more. This book will introduce children (and perhaps their parents) to dancers from around the world in such a fun way.

Even Valerie Bolling’s bio starts with rhythm–read it here. This is the author’s first picture book.

Illustrator Maine Diaz shares an online portfolio here (two pages, so click another icon on her page as well) and her bio here.

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