Friday, April 27, 2012

Picture book mini-reviews

How do we like this? I'm putting up some "mini-reviews" of picture books I've been reading recently. Not a full review, not really, just my quick thoughts on each.

Extra Yarn
by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Jon Klassen
Balzer + Bray
January 2012

Sweet and wonderful. Annabelle has a passion for knitting and an endless box of yarn. Soon, the whole town is bedecked with her creations. This heartwarming, inventive story could be a Caldecott contender, for sure.

I borrowed this book.

I'm Adopted!
by Shelley Rotner and Sheila M. Kelly
Holiday House
August 2011

A basic introduction to the idea of what adoption is, and how adopted families come to be formed. Covers both international and domestic adoption. Plenty of bright, clear photographs of diverse children in happy families - this book should corner the market for introductory adoption books for young families and the early-education classroom for a good decade or so - at least until the photos begin to look dated.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher.

One Cool Friend
by Toni Buzzeo, illustrated by David Small
Dial Books
January 2012

Cute! Very formal little boy Elliot gets a penguin for a pet. Often left to his own devices in elegant surroundings, he reminded me of a male Eloise. Mostly black and white drawings are accentuated with pops of color. Bonus points for the mannish, pink-haired librarian! A good surprise ending with his father and another unexpected pet.

I borrowed this book from the library.

Never Forgotten
by Patricia McKissack, illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon
Random House Children's Books
October 2011

Incredible! A boy from an African village, raised by his single father, with the help of his guardian angels, the four elements, is captured and sold into slavery. Gorgeous colorful woodcut-style illustrations are packed with hidden details, including skulls on the slave trader's boats. The elements of earth, fire, water and air search for him, and return news to his father that his son is all right, making his living as a metalworker. A powerful modern folktale.

I borrowed this book from the library.


  1. I love purchasing picture books for my nieces and nephews. Thanks for reviewing some great reads for me to pick up for them.

  2. Thanks! I feel so lucky to get exposed to so many great new books through my job. It's like winning the jackpot, really!

  3. Thanks for the mini review on Extra Yarn. I've been curious but haven't had a chance to pick it up yet.



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