Books by Dieter Schubert

THE CHEER-UP BIRD by Edward van de Vendel
Released: Oct. 1, 2015

"A chirpy pick-me-up tailor-made for sharing with one or many glum young listeners. (Picture book. 4-7)"
Bored or grumpy animals from Down Under get a lift from the Cheer-up Bird in this Dutch import. Now, who will cheer up the weary bird? Read full book review >
Released: May 1, 2015

"A deftly upbeat encounter that should go a long way toward quelling any nascent nighttime anxieties. (Picture book. 4-6)"
Far from being frightened, a small child is utterly delighted to find a green, toothy monster under her bed. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2013

"A thoroughgoing success from these trans-Atlantic collaborators. (Picture book. 4-8)"
A little whimsy, a little darkness, a little music for a song turned into a picture book by veteran singer/songwriter Ian. Read full book review >
OPPOSITES by Ingrid Schubert
Released: April 1, 2013

"Good fun for older preschoolers and early-elementary children eager to flex their conceptual muscles. (Picture book. 4-7)"
Disparate beasts frolic in a variety of landscapes, all to demonstrate myriad combinations of opposite pairs. Read full book review >
OPHELIA by Dieter Schubert
Released: Jan. 25, 2009

Entirely winning illustrations and a folktale-like plot are brought low by a lackluster, if unobjectionable, ending. One morning Ophelia the hippo is awakened by Kevin's voice coming "from afar," complaining of butterflies in his stomach. Off the pudgy 'potamus goes, medical bag in hand, to see to Kevin's stomachache, telling Meerkat as she goes. Meerkat recommends a hot-water bottle for his cramps and sets off too, alerting Frog before he leaves. Predictably, this forest game of "Telephone" imagines greater and greater troubles for poor Kevin with each animal in the chain, until, "Kevin is dead," screeches Toucan. Delicate, full-bleed watercolors depict the characters with a gentle humor: The yellow-spotted, blue-footed Frog, for instance, carries a red teapot; Meerkat sports a red scarf and totes his penguin hot-water bottle under his arm. With each iteration of Kevin's increasingly severe condition, the animals' imaginations are projected into the scene, Kevin's silhouette appearing in ever more dire circumstances. But the ending explanation—"He was just a little nervous about being in love"—is nothing if not a letdown and will likely leave readers feeling cheated. (Picture book. 4-8)Read full book review >
HAMMER SOUP by Ingrid Schubert
Released: May 1, 2004

The Schuberts dish up a nourishing broth, using "Stone Soup" and "Grasshopper and the Ants" as main ingredients. Hardworking, pest-hating Kate is infuriated when a genial giant, Bruce, cobbles together a ramshackle cabin next door—and even more so at his lackadaisical way with putting off till tomorrow what, in her view, should be done right now. When an ensuing winter storm blows his shack away, she reluctantly invites him into her cozy home—but refuses to feed him from her industriously gathered stores, until he proposes making soup from his small hammer. All he needs is a pot. . . . Children will enjoy contrasting the mild-mannered giant with his diminutive, type-A neighbor, as well as their respective homes—hers wonderfully tidy, with an adjacent, thoroughly weeded garden strewn with warning signs: his, thrown together from junk and mismatched parts—both rendered with engagingly exact detail in the pictures. By the end, Kate has lightened up, Bruce has shown at least a sign of changing his ways, and the two, along with their respective pets, are positively radiating good fellowship. Beautiful soup. (Picture book. 6-8)Read full book review >
Released: April 1, 2002

The characters from previous Schubert picture books (Beaver's Lodge, not reviewed, etc.) return for a new version of an old story. Beaver builds himself a little boat and invites his friends for a ride. When they point out that the boat is barely big enough for him, he builds a raft, and one by one, his friends join him on it. Even when Bear climbs aboard, they manage to stay afloat, but when Butterfly lights on Bear, the raft sinks and they end up in the river. It's all in a day's play and Beaver happily goes back to his little boat. The pleasant watercolors portray the animals appealingly and provide much to keep the eyes engaged: creatures peeking out from the foliage, a spider clinging to a tendril, and evidence of Beaver's lumberjack activities will maintain interest for multiple readings. (Picture book. 3-5)Read full book review >
ABRACADABRA by Ingrid Schubert
Released: April 15, 1997

A bear with a pig snout? A frog with wings? Macrobius the magician has played mix and match with all the animals in the forest. Something has to be done about him—soon. The animals think that Fox will have an answer, but even he has fallen under the spell and sports large yellow goose feet. Lowly Hedgehog comes up with a plan and all of them work together to best Macrobius. The text of this ``united we stand'' story is adequate, but the lively illustrations run away with the honors. Detailed watercolors, many of them full-bleed, double-page spreads, feature a large cast of mixed-up animals, an atmospheric forest, and a rather timid magician. Children will have fun figuring out whose misplaced body parts belong to whom, and the endpapers offer clues to Macrobius's bewitchment. (Picture book. 2-8) Read full book review >
AMAZING ANIMALS by Ingrid Schubert
Released: Sept. 15, 1995

A book about friendly animals of all stripes and colors, from every corner of the globe, growing, playing, swimming, flying, hunting, feeding, and dying. These pictures are precisely drawn in pencil and then carefully fleshed out with watercolors in such a way that no matter how complicated the scene (in one picture, over 70 different species can be counted), every detail can be surveyednothing gets lost in the whole. The illustrations are imaginatively conceivedbig tableaux, little scenes juxtaposed with one another, pictures laid out like diagrams (e.g., tracing the growth of a butterfly)and very animated. Although the animals in this book are sometimes agressive toward others shown, they are amiable enough toward readers. The texta rhyme or two per pagedoesn't quite live up to the pictures; amid a few felicitous lines (``It's naptime for this dreamy bunch/stuffed and sleeping after lunch'') are flat ones: ``Sometimes life is brutally stopped/one animal catches another and eats it up.'' (This is depicted in the illustration.) An agreeable book, if somewhat lopsided, that gives readers a good idea of what it must have been like inside Noah's ark. (Picture book/nonfiction. 4-8) Read full book review >