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Gift Ideas for Younger Children

by Betsy - 0 Comment(s)

If you need to buy a present for someone with younger children, or just like to share a great picture book with your own kids, these are a few of my recent favourites:

This Book Just Ate my Dog! by Richard Byrne

Following somewhat in the footsteps of the very popular Press Here, this is a picture book with a bit of interactivity, in which a young girl named Bella out for a dogwalk is very surprised when her dog disappears into the margin, followed quickly by her friend, Ben. When that seems to be just the beginning of this voracious book's appetites, it may just be up to the reader to sort things out and help save Bella, Ben, and all of her would-be rescuers, in a book that may just become a family favourite.

The World According to Musk Ox by Erin Cabatingan

Readers are familiar with musk ox, who stood front and center through both the alphabet and a counting odyssey. After all, it is all about him. Now, in their third outing, the two traipse all around the globe, with zebra introducing facts about each continent, while musk ox is, well, musk ox.

The Hockey Sweater by Roch Carrier

With the 100th Anniversary of Hockey Canada, it seems terribly appropriate to also have a hockey book for Christmas. What could be better than the 30th Anniversary edition of the classic Canadian title about a young boy's horror when his mother ends up replacing his #9 jersey not with another of the great Maurice Richard, but with a jersey belonging to ... the horror, the Toronto Maple Leafs? This isn't done in a town where the boys dress like the Rocket, act like the Rocket, comb their hair like the Rocket. How can he show his face again? This edition also comes with a bonus DVD.

And Two Boys Booed by Judith Viorst

On the morning of the talent show, after a lot of practicing, a small boy had practiced "a billion times." Judith Viorst presents a cumulative tale about a very realistic fear about performance anxiety with wonderful illustrations and flaps that show how this performer deals with a few detractors in a story that will resonate with anybody that has or will ever sing a song, play an instrument, give a speech, tell a story, or do anything in front of a crowd.

It's a great year for fantastic picture books! If you've found others, or would like other suggestions, drop us a line in the comments. Don't forget that you will find these, and other great titles, in your local Library!

Books to Share and Savour

by Betsy - 0 Comment(s)

There are a few new titles in our collection with a wonderful whimsy that makes them worth sharing, whether with your children, your classroom, or a child who may be having an upcoming birthday.

For Preschoolers

Love MonsterThe first title in Rachel Bright's new picture book series introduces us to an admittedly funny looking monster. Love Monster knows that he isn't the best-looking guy in the world, but he's determined to find someone who will love him. Adults will know that this doesn't work, and will appreciate that he's reading all the wrong self-help books, looking in the wrong places (up, down, the pond), yet, as one can always hope, just when one is about ready to give up, love is around the corner. There will be two more titles in a series intended for preschoolers and anyone reading to or with them.


For Kids 8–12

Snicker of MagicNatalie Lloyd's debut introduces readers to Felicity Pickle in A Snicker of Magic. The Pickles have always moved from place to place, as Felicity's mother has never been comfortable staying anywhere; it isn't until the Pickles get to Midnight Gulch, Tennessee, a town that had once been known for its magic, that Felicity finds herself longing to create a home for her family. Felicity herself has a touch of magic in her ability to see words emanating from people, which she then collects. Felicity meets her first real friend Jonah, who has a kind of magic of his own. Felicity sets out to discover what happened to Midnight Gulch's magic and whether she can, perhaps, bring it back, along with some security to her own family.

The denizens of this wonderful place are all as novel as you would expect in a place where ice cream has mystical properties, and the hair stylists are also mechanics. Felicity's appreciation of and use of language add to the book, and the extra tales, curse, and backstories will provide a treat for readers aged 8-12 who enjoys stories about language, families, and clever settings, along with a happy ending.

Fresh! Books for Sharing

by Betsy - 0 Comment(s)

Mustache BabyMustache BabyOne of the great pleasures of working at the Library is finding books that beg to be shared.

One such book coming out later this spring is a very funny picture book by Bridget Heos, called Mustache Baby. When Billy is born, his family notices something odd; he has a mustache. Will it be a good mustache, leading him to be good and true — like a cowboy, or a police officer, or will it be a bad-guy mustache, making him a pirate, or a cereal criminal? Only time will tell, but perhaps all of us have good and bad mustache days. Joy Ang's goofy illustrations add a lot to the text, making this a wonderful read aloud for older children as well, who will be able to appreciate the humour.

Nugget & FangNugget & Fang



Another funny picture book coming out this spring is the story of two unlikely BFFs in Tammi Sauer's Nugget & Fang: Friends Forever — or Snack Time? The idyllic friendship that a shark and a minnow have had is disrupted when the minnow goes to school and learns about food chains in reading group. How Fang proves to the minnows that he although he will always be "toothy" he is not just another shark is a winsome story of loyalty.


Exclamation MarkExclamation MarkOne last recent favorite is the newest offering from the team behind Wumbers: it's a word cr8ted with a number!, author Amy Krause Rosenthal & illustrator Tom Lichtenheld. This time around they present readers with Exclamation Mark, a story that uses punctuation to show that it is not only okay, but that it actually can be a good thing to be different from everyone else. This is a very clever book, as its illustrations allow for an amusing introduction of its point, in one case illustrating children as a group of periods in which the exclamation mark has never quite fit, until one day along comes a question mark, asking as many questions as children are often wont to do, and the exclamation mark finds his perfect role.