Shelf Awareness for Readers for Tuesday, December 1, 2015


Workman Publishing: Enter to Win a Library of Our Bestselling Holiday Gifts

From My Shelf

Clarkson Potter Publishers: Exciting Games for Readers and Word Lovers

Quirk Books: Holiday Gift Guide

Irresistible Gift Books for Kids

We've sifted through many colorful stacks of 2015 children's books to recommend 20 outstanding gift titles for the holiday season. Before leaping to that list of brand-new reviews, take a moment to browse through these three bonus shelves of hand-picked holiday picture books.

It doesn't snow everywhere in December, but it's always a winter wonderland between the covers of these splendid picture books. Emily Jenkins and Caldecott artist Paul O. Zelinsky reintroduce Little Girl's beloved toy characters from their Toys trilogy in the gorgeous Toys Meet Snow (Schwartz & Wade/Random House). A rubber ball named Plastic says snow is "what rain becomes when the temperature is freezing," but we all know the white, sparkly stuff holds more magic than that.
Find more snowy picture books in Let It Snow.

In these holiday picture books, readers are transported to Scandinavia, where a girl raises a baby reindeer; to a Hanukkah celebration in Brooklyn where a parakeet crashes the party; and to Prague, the home of Tom's Christmas Fish (Floris Books), a heartwarming Swedish import about a boy, his grandfather, and a carp named Peppo who narrowly escapes his fate as Christmas dinner.
Find more holiday titles in That's the Spirit! Holiday Picture Books.

Santa coos like a baby, loses his elves and runs from ninjas in this very merry collection of Santa books. In Linda Bailey's When Santa Was a Baby (Tundra), Geneviève Godbout's cozy, warm illustrations are positively edible--the perfect accompaniment to this charming, well-told holiday story about a generous-spirited little boy who was born to be the jolly man in the red suit.
Find more Santa books in Santa Baby: A Sleighful of Picture Books.

--Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Storey Publishing: The Naturalist's Notebook: An Observation Guide and 5-Year Calendar-Journal for Tracking Changes in the Natural World Around You by Nathaniel T. Wheelwright and Bernd Heinrich


Book Review

Children's & Young Adult

Ask Me

by Bernard Waber, illus. by Suzy Lee


The late Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile author Bernard Waber's Ask Me is just about a father and daughter on a walk, some might say. Suzy Lee's pencil lines--often in the glaring reds of fall leaves--are expressive, but not meant to be fancy. What's the big deal? The big deal is (and it really, really is), that the conversation between father and daughter reflects all their love and the history they've shared in a way that is so fresh and real it sounds like a transcript of a recording. The girl keeps asking the father to ask her what she likes. When he responds, the text is in purple. Beginning with the girl's line, it goes like this: What else do I like? / What else do you like? / I like sand. I like digging in the sand. I really, really do like digging in the sand. Deep, deep, down, down in the sand. / And I like seashells. Remember when we collected seashells? / I remember. / And I like starfish." This lovely back-and-forth winds over hill and dale until, finally, teeth are brushed and pajamas are on: "Good night." --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: A father and daughter take a neighborhood stroll and have a very charming conversation indeed in Bernard Waber's winning picture book, illustrated by Suzy Lee.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $16.99, hardcover, 40p., ages 4-7, 9780547733944

Avery Publishing Group: The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World by Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, and Douglas Carlton Abrams


Sidewalk Flowers

by JonArno Lawson, illus. by Sydney Smith


Sidewalk Flowers is picture-book perfection. Not a word is "spoken"; Sydney Smith's exquisitely inky, watercolor illustrations are all that's needed to animate JonArno Lawson's simple story of a little girl accompanying her preoccupied father on city errands.

In her red hooded jacket, the child is the only splash of color in a neighborhood that's washed in grays and black, until she begins spotting yellow dandelions and multi-colored glass vases and an occasional flowered dress. Her kind-looking--but distracted--father hurries her along, but can't stop our small heroine from noticing every valiant weed squeezing through sidewalk cracks. Nor is he aware when she begins bestowing her posy on friendly dogs, dearly departed birds and old men sleeping on park benches. No matter. She is content and self-contained, with no need for permission or recognition. Young children and their busy parents will adore this sweet--though never precious--slice of a child's day. --Emilie Coulter, freelance writer and editor

Discover: This wordless treasure of a picture book captures--through a child's eyes--the beauty in a seemingly dull cityscape.

Groundwood/House of Anansi, $16.95, hardcover, 32p., ages 4-7, 9781554984312

Trellis Publishing: Gift from the Garden by Bernie DuBois


Atlas of Adventures

by Rachel Williams, illus. by Lucy Letherland


The British import Atlas of Adventures is a fun, quirky alternative to a traditional children’s atlas. Organized like a travelogue that begins with a world map and spans the globe, this alluringly oversized book is filled with curious facts about animals, people and culture; browsable maps; and suggestions for possible adventures a child could have, including "Monkey around in Nagano’s hot springs" (in Japan), "Explore Giza’s ancient pyramids" and more. It’s no surprise that the author, Rachel Williams, has spent time working on travel books for Lonely Planet; Atlas of Adventures seems designed to inspire children to travel, or at least to investigate the incredible cultural and natural diversity of the world's continents on display here.

Playful, finely detailed, full-bleed illustrations by Lucy Letherland have an idiosyncratic appeal that suits William’s vibrant descriptions of Hong Kong’s Lantern Festival, an Indian Holi Festival, or dog sledding with huskies in Alaska. Simply by opening the book, the reader is greeted with an absolutely beautiful swarm of monarch butterflies on the front endpapers, just one of the many stunning images that will make this book a cherished gift. --Hank Stephenson, bookseller, Flyleaf Books

Discover: The magnificent, oversized Atlas of Adventures--a celebration of the world's diversity--invites readers to steer a Venetian gondola or shower with an elephant in Thailand's Chiang Mai.

Wide Eyed Editions, $30, hardcover, 96p., ages 7-11, 9781847806956

Legend Press: Lose yourself in a legendary classic - Click to win a copy


Miracle on 133rd Street

by Sonia Manzano, illus. by Marjorie Priceman


It's a snowy Christmas Eve on 133rd Street in New York City. José's trying to decorate a Christmas "twig," and Mami isn't happy either, using "a string of words he was not allowed to use--in English or Spanish," partly because their apartment's oven is too small for the roast, partly because she's homesick for Puerto Rico. José jokes that they need a pizza oven, but Papi jumps on the idea. Together, they walk (lugging the roast in a box) to Regular Ray's Pizzeria, past a few grumpy, sad, or suspicious neighbors: "The roast began to feel heavier and heavier." In a wonderful crescendo to a happy ending, Mr. Ray cooks the roast and Papi and José invite him--and everyone else they know--to dinner!

Caldecott Honor artist Marjorie Priceman's richly colorful, glorious gouache-and-ink paintings swirl and whirl, reflecting the irrepressible joy of this lively celebration of holiday spirit by award-winning author Sonia Manzano (aka Maria on Sesame Street). --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: The too-small oven of a Puerto Rican family in New York City is the unlikely catalyst for a community Christmas dinner in this festive picture book.

Atheneum/Simon & Schuster, $17.99, hardcover, 48p., ages 4-8, 9780689878879

Prospect Park Books: Addicted to Americana: Celebrating Classic & Kitschy American Life & Style by Charles Phoenix


Over the Hills and Far Away: A Treasury of Nursery Rhymes

by Elizabeth Hammill, collector


From "Baa, baa, black sheep" and "Miss Mary Mack, Mack, Mack" to "Moses supposes his toeses are roses...," poem gatherer Elizabeth Hammill, who grew up with the unforgettable characters of Mother Goose, loves the "music, beat, rhythm, repetition, and rhyme" of nursery rhymes. In this knockout-gorgeous British import (created to benefit Seven Stories, Britain's National Centre for Children's Books), an Inuit finger game, a Yiddish rhyme and other "tiny masterpieces of verse" from Jamaica, Australia, England, America and Trinidad will surprise and delight preschoolers. A veritable who's who of beloved artists--Bob Graham, Ed Young, Mo Willems, Ashley Bryan, Mini Grey, Jerry Pinkney, Polly Dunbar, Charlotte Voake, Chris Raschka, Ted Dewan and 67 more--creatively interprets 150 nursery rhymes. Over the Hills and Far Away is a visual feast for children's book lovers, a wonderful gift for any wee reader and, of course, an unbeatable baby-shower gift. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: Seventy-seven celebrated children's book illustrators make 150 nursery rhymes from around the world leap to life in this not-to-be-missed British import.

Candlewick, $21.99, hardcover, 160p., ages 2-7, 9780763677299

Sounds True: Practice You: A Journal by Elena Brower


P. Zonka Lays an Egg

by Julie Paschkis


P. Zonka is the only chicken on the farm that doesn't lay eggs. Why? " 'Because she wanders around the farmyard day in and day out, staring at flowers and gawking at clouds,' said Nadine." Dora clucks that P. Zonka is "just a dreamer." Gloria, the rooster, says what he always says: "Cock-a-doodle-doo!" P. Zonka isn't bothered. She's too busy gazing at the deep blue sky, the big red tulips and little pink cherry blossoms. " 'Can't you at least try?' they all asked." P. Zonka tries... and the results are spectacular! A vertical two-page spread reveals a colorful, ornate Ukrainian egg, a pysanka (sounds like P. Zonka!) and the deep blue sky, big red tulips and little pink cherry blossoms are all there. P. Zonka doesn't lay many more eggs "but the ones she laid were worth the wait."

Every charming page of P. Zonka Lays an Egg by Julie Paschkis (Apple Cake: A Recipe for Love) is awash in cheerful watercolors, decorative folk-art patterns and kinetic black line work worth crowing over. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: A daydreaming chicken named P. Zonka annoys the other chickens by not laying eggs... then stuns them when she does.

Peachtree, $16.95, hardcover, 32p., ages 3-7, 9781561458196

Crown Publishing Group: Artemis by Andy Weir


Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

by Lewis Carroll, illus. by Anna Bond


One-and-a-half centuries after Lewis Carroll introduced Alice, the White Rabbit, Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee and the Mad Hatter, readers are every bit as delighted and bemused by the surreal dreamscape of Wonderland. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland will never grow old, and in this beautiful, oversized, hardcover anniversary edition--with the complete, unabridged text--readers will fall in love all over again with the classic tale of the girl who fell down the rabbit hole.

Illustrator Anna Bond, of gift and stationery brand Rifle Paper Co., applies her stylish, whimsical touch and distinctive color palette to Alice and her friends, from the inviting jacket and the case-cover art beneath it to the original endpapers and the superb full-color interior illustrations, large and small. No teacup is decorated the same at the Mad Tea-Party, and the Caterpillar with his hookah on a brilliant red mushroom is surrounded by a wilderness of flowers and shrubs. Perhaps loveliest of all are the golden Gryphon and his friend, the sad, beret-sporting Mock Turtle. --Emilie Coulter, freelance writer and editor 

Discover: This splendid 150th-anniversary edition of the beloved Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is fancifully illustrated by Rifle Paper Co.'s Anna Bond.

Puffin/Penguin, $30, hardcover, 192p., ages 10-up, 9780147515872

Portable Press: Uncle John's Old Faithful 30th Anniversary by Bathroom Readers' Institute


National Geographic Book of Nature Poetry: More than 200 Poems with Photographs that Float, ZOOM, and Bloom

by J. Patrick Lewis, editor


Former U.S. Children's Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis (National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry) mines the poetry of many of the world's favorite poets and emerging voices, too, in this spectacular collection of 200 nature poems, all illustrated with artful photographs of the natural world.

Readers will be drawn in from very first poem, N. Scott Momaday's "The Delight Song of Tsoai-talee": "I am a feather on the bright sky/ I am the blue horse that runs in the plain...." The nature poems sit in sections such as "In the Sky," "In the Sea," "On the Move" and "In Season." Poems from luminaries such as Emily Dickinson, Wendell Berry, Joyce Sidman, Billy Collins, Karla Kuskin, Douglas Florian, Walt Whitman, Lee Bennett Hopkins, Langston Hughes, e.e. cummings, Jack Prelutsky, Li Po, Vachel Lindsay, Marilyn Singer, Robert Frost, Jane Yolen, Joseph Bruchac, Nikki Grimes, Gary Snyder, Naomi Shihab Nye and Lewis, too, take on a whole new life juxtaposed with brilliant photographs of fiddleheads and frogs, boulders and butterflies, lightning and lakes. Breathtaking. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: Former U.S. Children's Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis edited this wondrous collection of nature poems and photographs, a must-have for just about anyone.

National Geographic, $24.99, hardcover, 192p., ages 8-adult, 9781426320941

Shelf Awareness Sign-up Giveaway: The Land Beyond by Leon McCarron


The Story of Snowflake and Inkdrop

by Pierdomenico Baccalario, Alessandro Gatti, trans. by Brenda Porster, illus. by Simona Mulazzani


Snowflake dreams of where he might land in the city, fluttering over multi-colored roofs and merry voices. White pages, with cut-out snowflake patterns, hint at the rich colors of cityscapes beneath. Below, in that same city, Inkdrop sighs inside her ink bottle, waiting for the artist to use her in one of his drawings. Black pages, with cut-out ink-splotch patterns, offer glimpses of the artist's vibrant paintings beneath. The wind tips the ink bottle, and Inkdrop flies out the window--straight into Snowflake--and their magnificent collision is represented by an astounding, laser-cut gatefold. They stay together from that day forward, telling each other their stories.

Originally published in Italian as Storia di Goccia e Fiocco, this lavish, oversized labor of love tells the dreamily romantic tale of Snowflake and Inkdrop from two separate points of view. (The book has two front covers!) A lovely gift for children and enamored adults alike. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: In this extraordinary Italian import, Snowflake and Inkdrop meet by chance in the sky, and once they collide, they never part again.

Enchanted Lion, $22.95, hardcover, 56p., ages 4-10, 9781592701865

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

by J.K. Rowling, illus. by Jim Kay


Sometimes when a reader loves an illustrated book, it's almost unbearable to see any new versions. But Jim Kay's stunning, full-color depictions of "the boy who survived" and his magical (mis)adventures are sure to win over even the most loyal fans of J.K. Rowling's original Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.

Kay is the Kate Greenaway Medal-winning British illustrator behind Patrick Ness's A Monster Calls, and in this deluxe, giant, unabridged, jacketed hardcover edition, the unicorn in the Forbidden Forest positively glows, and Fluffy the three-headed beast seems to leap off the page, nose first. Hagrid's "small wooden house" is a rustic thing of beauty, surrounded by cabbages and pumpkins, an owl in the chimney, and the best dragon scarecrow ever. More than 100 illustrations, including several sumptuous double-page spreads, will enchant longtime fans and newbies alike. (Plus, there's an elegant ribbon bookmark!) --Emilie Coulter, freelance writer and editor

Discover: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone is lit up as never before in this deluxe edition, dramatically illustrated in full color by award-winning British illustrator Jim Kay.

Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic, $39.99, hardcover, 256p., ages 8-14, 9780545790352

Fable Comics

by Chris Duffy, editor


Joining Nursery Rhyme Comics and Fairy Tale Comics, editor Chris Duffy's Fable Comics breathes fun new life into the moralizing tales of Aesop, the Indian Panchatantra and others.

Twenty-six cartoonists--among them Jaime Hernandez (Love and Rockets) and Corinne Mucha (Get Over It!)--put their quirky creative spin on 28 fables. Each colorful comic strip reflects the distinct style of the artist in sometimes weird, always wonderful adaptations. Some cartoonists take the straight-up approach, depicting a fable in a completely recognizable fashion--"The Boy Who Cried Wolf," for example. Stories such as the dreamy "Fox and Crow," however, require more from the reader to get to the moral. Not intended as an introduction to fables, this stylistically eclectic compendium of "bossy stories" is an exciting gift for the literary aesthete or comic book fiend. --Emilie Coulter, freelance writer and editor

Discover: Twenty-eight fables by Aesop and others morph into colorful comics in editor Chris Duffy's terrific collection featuring 26 esteemed cartoonists.

First Second/Roaring Book, $19.99, hardcover, 128p., ages 8-up, 9781626721074

Home

by Carson Ellis


Most creatures need shelter to survive. In her beautiful and inviting solo debut, Home, Carson Ellis (Wildwood series artist) illustrates the many different kinds of homes that humans and animals--past, present and even fictional--might inhabit.

A bird flies out of its nest on the title page and leads the reader on a worldwide tour of homes throughout time and place and even outer space, adding a fun "find the bird" element to the whimsical gouache and ink illustrations, awash in an exquisitely earthy color palette. "Home is a house in the country," and home is also an apartment, underground lair or shoe ("There Was an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe"). "French people live in French homes" and "Atlantians make their homes underwater." The book becomes a bit poetic in the middle: "Tall homes./ Short homes./ Sea homes./ Bee homes./ Hollow tree homes." Each painting is an untold story, waiting to be drawn out. "Where is your home? Where are you?" --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: Carson Ellis paints lovely homes for bees, a Slovakian duchess, a Kenyan blacksmith, a Norse god and more.

Candlewick, $16.99, hardcover, 40p., ages 4-8, 9780763665296

Picturepedia

by DK Publishing


DK Smithsonian's massive, visually stunning Picturepedia delivers on its promise of "an encyclopedia on every page." This hefty, 360-page reference book is not only stuffed with photographs--10,000 of them to be exact--it has illustrations, infographics, lists, timelines, facts and more covering everything from physics and space travel to racket sports and ancient Greece... just about any imaginable subject a child could find interesting.

Smithsonian experts explore topics such as "Where food comes from," breaking it down to basic food crops, cereals, dairy, etc. Easy-to-understand timelines show how women's fashion or technology have evolved, with accompanying photographs of dresses, or the Commodore personal computer. The final chapter covers difficult historical periods such as World War I and the Industrial Revolution, with the neat trick of simplifying for, without condescending to, young readers. Add some icky close-up shots of snails and frogs to the mix, and there really is something for everyone. --Hank Stephenson, bookseller, Flyleaf Books

Discover: With 10,000 photographs and much more, Picturepedia beautifully illustrates subjects as diverse as the Earth's structure, feudal Japan and soccer.

DK Publishing, $29.99, hardcover, 360p., ages 8-12, 9781465438287

Little Red Gliding Hood

by Tara Lazar, illus. by Troy Cummings


"It was winter, and the river winding through the enchanted forest was frozen solid." And that means perfect skating weather for Little Red Gliding Hood. As the red-hooded skater swizzles and twizzles down the frozen river, she spots a sign advertising a "Pairs Skating Competition," and the prize is brand-new skates. She needs new skates--hers are worn out, partly from skating to her Grandma's house every Sunday. Little Red needs a skating partner, too, but when she asks Old MacDonald, he doesn't answer, he just slips and falls: "E-I-E-I-ouch!" As Little Red continues her search, (would Baby Bear be "just right?"), young readers familiar with nursery rhymes, fables and fairy tales will revel in all the clever references. Just as she's about to ask one of the Three Little Pigs, the Big Bad Wolf shows up... "EEK!" Turns out, he's not so bad. They win the skating competition--and new skates!--and everyone lives happily ever after. Troy Cummings's fun, cartoonish, deliciously colorful artwork spins and jumps. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: In this entertaining mashup of age-old stories, Little Red Gliding Hood finds the perfect partner for the skating competition.

Random House, $16.99, hardcover, 40p., ages 2-5, 9780385370066

Thank You and Good Night

by Patrick McDonnell


Thank You and Good Night by Caldecott Honor artist Patrick McDonnell (Me... Jane) is about a surprise pajama party for an adorable rabbit named Clement. He and his bear and elephant friends do a chicken dance, have a funny-face contest, play hide-and-seek and even do a little yoga, until the night winds down and the kindly human, Maggie, suggests: "Now, before we go to sleep, let's all say what we were thankful for this day." The long, long list--from a moon to a red balloon--is a soothing bedtime rhyme that ends with a good-night kiss. McDonnell's simple illustrations of the three tiny friends are ridiculously, impossibly cute, especially when the once-tireless trio is yawning. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: A little rabbit's surprise pajama party ends with a long list of things to be thankful for in this bedtime charmer by Patrick McDonnell.

Little, Brown, $15.99, hardcover, 40p., ages 3-6, 9780316338011

Little Robot

by Ben Hatke


A little robot and a little girl are both alone in the world, until they find each other and become fast friends.

With a lot of JONK! and MORP!--and not much more dialogue than that--the unlikely pair explores both junkyard and forest as the girl introduces her new robot buddy to the ways of the wilds around her trailer-park home, including the delights of petting cats. (This does not go well.) The pace quickens when readers learn that the little robot has fallen off the back of a delivery truck and is being pursued by a scary robot who is programmed to track stray shipments--soon placing a very large hurdle between the little girl and her new (and only) friend.

Thanks to Ben Hatke's (Zita the Spacegirl trilogy) expressive illustrations, there's more than one way to experience this charming, nearly wordless, full-color graphic novel, as the sweet story can be understood even by those who aren't yet reading. --Stephanie Anderson, assistant director for public services, Darien Library (Conn.)

Discover: Ben Hatke's sweet graphic novel about a friendship between a young girl and a robot can be enjoyed by readers of any age or ability.

First Second/Roaring Brook, $16.99, hardcover, 144p., ages 5-9, 9781626720800

Rufus the Writer

by Elizabeth Bram, illus. by Chuck Groenink


There will be no lemonade stand for Rufus this summer, he's going to have a story stand. He'll need pencils, paper, markers, a table and chair, a banner that spells "S-T-O-R-I-E-S"--and a red bow tie. Once he sets up, friends start to come by. Millie and Walter agree to bring him a special shell from the beach in exchange for a story, so Rufus writes "Orange Is the Best Color," illustrated with a fishy underwater scene, with lots of orange, captured in colored pencils. Rufus asks his friend Sandy for a black kitten in exchange for a story, and that swap inspires "The Wallet and the Cat," about a boy who finds a wallet containing $5 million and spends $1 million of it on a cat. One can only hope this fresh, winning tribute to the value of storytelling inspires a rash of Rufus-style story stands across the globe!

Chuck Groenink's endearing illustrations, in gouache, acrylics and pencils, weave Rufus's simple stories into the main narrative in dozens of clever ways to make a colorful, creative tapestry indeed. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: A boy named Rufus decides to set up a story stand one summer and ends up with all sorts of wonderful trades, from a shell to a kitten.

Schwartz & Wade/Random House, $17.99, hardcover, 40p., ages 4-8, 9780385378536

How the Sun Got to Coco's House

by Bob Graham


On its way across the world to wake up a little girl named Coco, the sun "skid[s] giddily" across oceans, balances on the wing of an airplane and makes a rainbow over a train of desert camels, until finally, "Bold as you like, it extinguishe[s] the streetlights on Coco's street" and barges through her window.

With How the Sun Got to Coco's House, Bob Graham (The Silver Button; A Bus Called Heaven) writes a thoughtful, expansive, pitch-perfect story for the preschool and kindergarten set. Soft ink and watercolor illustrations reflect the ever-changing light of the warm yellow sun as it travels from Arctic snowscapes to cramped city apartments--catching a whale's eye here, making shadows there. What could be more reassuring than waiting for the sun to rise, whether for a polar bear cub, an old woman or a small child in bed? And once the sun has arrived, why not invite it to spend the whole day together? --Emilie Coulter, freelance writer and editor

Discover: The sun takes a global tour, touching land, sea and sky as it makes its way through the bedroom window of a little girl named Coco.

Candlewick Press, $17.99, hardcover, 40p., ages 4-7, 9780763681098

Flop to the Top

by Eleanor Davis, illus. by Drew Weing


Wanda is not shy, nor does she lack confidence. "I'm a superstar! Everybody says so," she says, snapping a selfie. Wanda kicks her little sister off the red carpet in their house and is too busy watching The Star Show to play with her siblings. When her trusty dog, floppy old Wilbur, wants to play ball, she huffs, "Ugh! My fans won't leave me alone!" But she does take a selfie of herself and Wilbur together and posts it to social media right before bedtime. The next morning, she awakes to 20 million "likes" and TV crews swarming her house. She is ready for her close-up, but it's not Wanda the cameras seek: it's Floppy Dog. Wanda gets mad: "You are a BAD DOG," she says to Wilbur. In the end, she regrets her harsh words and diva ways... and she is forgiven, too. The bold, funny, comic book-paneled illustrations in Flop to the Top burst with energy on par with Wanda's ferocious ambition. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: Wannabe superstar Wanda is furious when her floppy dog gets famous and leaves her in the dust... but she comes around.

Toon Books, $12.95, hardcover, 40p., ages 5-9, 9781935179894

What in the World? Numbers in Nature

by Nancy Raines Day, illus. by Kurt Cyrus


"What in the world comes one by one?" begins this delightful, rhythmic book about finding numbers in nature by Nancy Raines Day (Way Down Below Deep; Piecing Earth & Sky Together). The answer is: "A nose./ A mouth./ The moon./ The sun." "What in the world comes two by two?" "A pair of birds with wings of blue." Threes? "Leaves of a clover, bodies of bees." Four by four? "Petals of poppies, hooves--and more." Five by five? "The arms of sea stars, all alive." It's always exciting to come across a book that offers up a new perspective on the world, and the beautiful, expansive compositions of Kurt Cyrus (Lisa Wheeler's Mammoths on the Move, Tadpole Rex) reflect Day's contagious awe of nature and its numbers. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: Three clover leaves, four hooves, five sea-star arms--numbers in nature are celebrated in this rhyming, perspective-expanding picture book.

Beach Lane/Simon & Schuster, $17.99, hardcover, 32p., ages 4-8, 9781481400602

--- SPECIAL ADVERTORIAL OFFERINGS ---

Author Buzz

Dear Reader,

Cass, the singularly reliable wife and mother in POISON, has a blissful marriage...until she begins to suspect that her husband may be trying to kill her. But when she takes action to save herself and her children, no one believes her. 

I wrote POISON as both a suspenseful thriller and a cautionary tale to promote discussion and to keep you riveted. Please write trademarketing@stmartins.com for a chance to win one of five copies.

-Galt Niederhoffer
https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250085290

 

Buy this book

Publisher:
St. Martin's Press 

Pub Date:
Nov. 21, 2017

ISBN:
9781250085290

List Price: $26.99

 

Dear Reader,

Archeologist Nick Randall searches for the lost city of Vilcabamba. Hidden deep in the Amazon, he believes it holds proof that his controversial theories are true. When he disappears, his daughter Samantha must set aside her own career to search for him. But someone else seeks him as well. Francis Dumond, a shadowy man with unlimited resources, will stop at nothing to find him first. 

THE RUINS, is a 2015 Adventure Writers Competition semi-finalist. Readers Favorite says, “Robert Rapoza has constructed an elder statesman/action hero worthy of Pierce Brosnan or Liam Neeson.”

Email authorrobertrapoza@gmail.com with the subject line "The Ruins Giveaway" to win one of five signed copies. 

Robert Rapoza
www.robertrapoza.com

 

Buy this book

Publisher:
Ravenswood Publishing  

Pub Date:
Sept. 1, 2017

ISBN:
9781975898755

List Price: $13.99

 

Powered by: Xtenit