Books by Jane Chapman

Released: Jan. 7, 2020

"Yes, hearts are full of love, and a heartbeat can be a soothing comfort to those in need of some TLC. (Picture book. 3-7) "
Chapman adds to the I-love-you-always shelf. Read full book review >
BEAR CAN'T SLEEP by Karma Wilson
Released: Oct. 23, 2018

"A smart, stealth bedtime tale. (Picture book. 3-5)"
A brown bear tries his best to slumber through winter. Read full book review >
Released: March 1, 2018

"Immersive, fluffy, and tailor-made for one-on-one storytime with caregivers and friends. (Picture book. 3-7)"
Paw in paw, two otter pups keep each other safe from a dangerous ocean storm. Read full book review >
ME TOO, GRANDMA! by Jane Chapman
Released: March 1, 2017

"Hoo doesn't love a sweet story about grandmas? (Picture book. 3-6)"
A child fears the loss of his grandmother's love. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 29, 2016

"Fluent and friendly, this frolic will encourage preschoolers and emergent readers to recite and chant along with each reread. (Picture book. 3-6)"
Forest-animal friends launch a string of contrasting terms to illustrate opposites just as a storm brings everyone together in Bear's cozy lair. Read full book review >
Released: March 1, 2016

"Promising-enough storytime fare despite the unconvincing illustrations. (Picture book. 6-8)"
Mouse's roomy new home becomes anything but as he discovers that it already has several outsized residents. Read full book review >
NO MORE CUDDLES! by Jane Chapman
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A fully rounded, easily associative, and visually inviting story. (Picture book. 3-7)"
As everybody knows, a bigfoot likes his privacy, even if he is built to cuddle: snuggly, soft, and silky (at least those bigfeet like Barry, who evidently knows about bathing). Read full book review >
BEAR COUNTS by Karma Wilson
Released: May 12, 2015

"Bear's fans may get practice counting the number of times they ask for this again. (Picture book. 2-5)"
Having tackled one concept in Bear Sees Colors (2014), Bear and his charming woodland friends now address the numbers from one through five. Read full book review >
BEAR SEES COLORS by Karma Wilson
Released: Sept. 23, 2014

"Light on story but full of delightful details and lots of color practice, this is sure to garner many new fans for Bear and his group of friends. (Picture book. 2-6)"
Wilson and Chapman's Bear is back, this time for younger listeners who are learning colors. Read full book review >
GOODNIGHT, ARK by Laura Sassi
Released: Aug. 4, 2014

"A breezy text kept afloat by the buoyant illustrations—if only Mrs. Noah had been invited along for the ride as well. (Picture book/religion. 2-7)"
Noah packs up an ark full of critters and heads out to sea in a gale in this rollicking, rhymed version of the Old Testament story. Read full book review >
IS IT CHRISTMAS YET? by Jane Chapman
Released: Sept. 1, 2013

"A story with a youngster getting ready for Christmas with just his dad should be a welcome choice for single fathers to share with their children. (Picture book. 3-6)"
A little bear named Teddy gets ready for Christmas with his father, Big Bear, in this decidedly cheerful British import. Read full book review >
WHO ARE WE? by Alexis Barad-Cutler
Released: June 1, 2013

"Toddlers and young preschoolers, both independently and in groups, will enjoy both the guessing game and the simple, interesting animal facts this offering provides. (Board book. 1-3)"
An engaging, lift-the-flap riddle book that will keep little ones guessing. Read full book review >
BEAR SAYS THANKS by Karma Wilson
Released: Sept. 4, 2012

"A tender tale of friendship, timed for Thanksgiving. (Picture book. 3-7)"
In a new companion to Bear Snores On and Bear Wants More (2002, 2003), a lovable bevy of friends come together again for feast and fun. Read full book review >
I'M NOT SLEEPY by Jane Chapman
Released: Sept. 1, 2012

"An ideal story for those who prefer softer edges to their bedtime shenanigans. (Picture book. 3-6)"
A little owlet employs a big bag of tricks when Grandma tries to get him to settle down to sleep. Read full book review >
Released: June 1, 2012

"This soothing ode to the power of friendship reveals that a lazy day is always better spent with the ones you love. (Picture book. 3-5)"
The grass is always greener when you have companions to share your time. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2011

"Brisk and bright, yet subtle in its message. (Picture book. 3-6)"
What can little creatures do to protect themselves from the forest bully? Read full book review >
BEAR'S LOOSE TOOTH by Karma Wilson
Released: Aug. 30, 2011

"Though it is light on specific information about how and why teeth are lost, most children will enjoy relating to Bear in his latest oh-so-cozy adventure. (Picture book. 3-6)"
Wilson and Chapman continue this popular series that began with Bear Snores On (2002). Read full book review >
THE LITTLE WHITE OWL by Tracey Corderoy
Released: Oct. 1, 2010

In the middle of a snowy wilderness, there lives a little white owl, all by himself, with just his teddy bear. But his head is full of happy stories and he's got lots of toast to nibble, so he's never lonely. One day, he notices that the big blue sky seems to stretch on forever, so he decides to check it out. He flies to a forest of the prettiest trees, where a parliament of beautiful owls, with perfect bright feathers in a spectrum of colors, lives. They daren't move for fear of marring their feathers, but they're not shy to tell the little white owl how plain he looks. The little white owl shares his toast and declares that he does have colors, in his heart, and proves it with magical tales that bring smiles to his listeners. Soon they're spreading their wings. This fuzzy fable seems unclear of its message—fine feathers aren't all they're cracked up to be? stories have the power to liberate? always travel with a toaster?—though Corderoy's prose is lyrical (if treacly) and Chapman's illustrations are pretty enough. (Picture book. 4-6)Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2009

The animals of the forest are preparing for Christmas, but Grumpy Badger just wants to settle down for his long winter's nap. He is awakened by cheery visits from several friends and then by a frantic call for help for Mole, who is stuck at the top of the community Christmas tree. All the visitors are rebuffed with grumpy behavior, but after a nightmare about poor Mole's fate, Grumpy Badger repents, rescues his friend and invites everyone home to feast on his winter provisions. The story is quite British in tone and dialogue, and the characters (all males) have a certain appeal due to their dignified manners—or curmudgeonly attitude, in the case of Grumpy Badger. The oversized format helps provide a good look at Chapman's cast of endearing animal characters. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2008

It seems that all the little bears in this family are "scaredy-bears" when it comes to thunderstorms. While Bear and Mrs. Bear try to sleep on a stormy night, one by one, Baby Bear, Little Bear and Young Bear creep into their bed, convinced the storm's howls and bangs are monsters. "There's no such thing as monsters!" Bear tries to convince them unsuccessfully. After being awakened three times, it's Bear's turn not to be able to sleep, and he ends up getting spooked by the storm as well. Bear gets a taste of his own medicine when the small bears laugh at him and tell him there's no such thing as monsters. Though not particularly striking in any way, it's still a mildly amusing if predictable story about a classic issue. Human "scaredy-bears" will enjoy the humorous turn and probably find comfort in the repetition and Chapman's trademark cuddly illustrations. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
A LONG WAY FROM HOME by Elizabeth Baguley
Released: Sept. 1, 2008

Noah the bunny feels "squished and squashed by the sleepy rabbits" in his burrow, so into the night he goes. An albatross takes him to the frozen North where he plays in the snow and then sleeps, splendidly alone, in an ice cave. But when he wakes up cold, all he wants is to be back in his burrow—will he be able to get home? Is there really any doubt? Chapman delivers one of her trademark adorable little animals endowed with a Disney-esque range of expressions. The icy-blue palette of the North stands in sharp and effective contrast to the cozy browns of the burrow in this mild flight of fancy. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
THE DARK, DARK NIGHT by M. Christina Butler
Released: June 1, 2008

A monster stalks the pond...or does it? After greeting friends Hedgehog, Badger, Rabbit and Mouse, Frog hops his way down to the pond. It's getting dark so he needs his lantern to guide him. There he nearly runs into a huge, black Pond Monster (which even the youngest listener will be able to recognize as Frog's shadow), and Frog hops away as fast as he can. One by one, his friends sneak down with him for a peek at the monster, making the shadow bigger and more ominous each time. It's only when Mouse swims ahead that the others see a shadow and realize the source of their unfounded fears. The reiteration of the joke will wear thin by the end, although the repetition of sound effects and the refrain, "And the dark was all around," provides a happy linguistic anchor for reading the tale aloud. Chapman's animals pop with bold color and apt detail; Butler's familiar fable is amiable but ultimately undistinguished. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
DADDY HUG by Tim Warnes
by Tim Warnes, illustrated by Jane Chapman
Released: May 1, 2008

This husband-and-wife team's addition to the daddy-adoration genre comes out just in time for his big day. An adorable but realistically portrayed cast of animals parades through the pages, daddies with their offspring. One by one, compact rhyming couplets describe the various dads: "Daddy busy / Daddy strong / Daddy slimy / Daddy long." These pages depict hummingbirds, gorillas, snails and snakes, respectively, each interacting with his children. Many of the adjectives and verbs appear in delightfully descriptive fonts—"fluffy" sprouts soft-looking feathers, while "dirty" shakes off clumps of mud. The gentle rhyme sets the tone for bedtime, and the final spread is the perfect segue to sleep, with a group of daddies hugging their children close. As always, Chapman's illustrations define the mood and tone for the text. Her animal families are warm and loving, with expressive faces, and she keeps their interactions and activities natural. A cuddly tribute to all the things that make a dad, Dad...and not a bad way to reinforce a child's concept of adjectives and verbs, either. (Picture book. 3-5)Read full book review >
BEAR FEELS SICK by Karma Wilson
Released: Sept. 11, 2007

This gentle rhyming tale about being sick and taking care of friends is sure to cheer up even the sniffliest of small patients. It's a beautiful autumn day, but Bear is feeling sick and cannot play with his friends. Instead of leaving him to recuperate alone, they tenderly try to make him feel better. Hare snuggles a blanket around him and mouse gives him a hug, while badger gets some water so that gopher can cook some broth and mole can put a cool cloth on his forehead. When this does not cure him, the birds fly off to get some leaves for tea, but Bear "still feels sick." Lullabies finally coax him off to sleep, and when he awakens, all their efforts have paid off. Unfortunately, now his friends are feeling sick, and bear unflinchingly takes up the mantle of caregiver. Chapman's acrylic illustrations are as delightful as ever, depicting an adorable cast of forest animals in warm earth tones. The friends' love for one another is more than evident from their facial expressions and tender actions. This is a sure soother for anyone home sick in bed. (Picture book. 3-7)Read full book review >
TIME TO SAY GOODNIGHT by Sally Lloyd-Jones
Released: Feb. 1, 2006

Forest animal moms tell their little ones that it's time to say goodnight in this rhyming bedtime treat. "Tiny mouse, the day is done. / Stop your scurrying, little one. / No more squeaking, not one peep. / Close your eyes now, go to sleep!" From the smallest bunny, bird and squirrel, to the largest deer and bear, the animals must stop what they are doing and settle in for the night—except for the owl, that is. Two beautiful double-page spreads wordlessly depict parents and children snuggling in, whether it's to a nest, den or burrow. But in a somewhat jarring finale, the animals leave their cozy beds to address the reader directly with a pointed reminder that it's time for sleep. Chapman's illustrations are filled with muted colors and soft shapes, helping to set the stage for bedtime. Her sweetly expressive forest animals will be a surefire winner with children and parents alike. The progression of both text and pictures from busy activity to settling down will give youngsters an example to follow. (Picture book. 2-6)Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2005

Little Mortimer Mouse craves a mouse-sized house of his own because his mouse hole is not a pleasant place—"Too cold. Too cramped. Too creepy." At Christmastime, Mortimer finds a house that is just the right size: a Nativity set with a little hay-filled bed that's a perfect fit. He moves the baby and the other statues out of the house each night so he can curl up in the manger until he overhears the Nativity story read out loud on Christmas Eve. Mortimer then realizes the meaning of the statues and the baby Jesus figure and offers a prayer to Jesus to send him a home of his own. Mortimer's prayer is answered in short order when he finds a gingerbread house set out for Christmas Eve. Mortimer is an appealing little creature in Chapman's illustrations, showing his determination to find a cozy bed, but the volume's greater appeal for families and schools will be as a simple but satisfying story that focuses on the true meaning of Christmas rather than on Santa or presents. (Picture book. 3-8)Read full book review >
MOMMY MINE by Tim Warnes
Released: March 1, 2005

Author Warnes teams up with his illustrator wife to create a salute to mothers of all types. Simple, rhyming text characterizes the mostly physical attributes of various animal mothers. Spanning a broad spectrum of species, Warnes's choices include creatures from the smallest winged insect to the tallest giraffe. The sing-song cadence of the rhymes is naturally suited for read-aloud sessions with the very young. Although some human mothers could take umbrage at the slightly disparaging remarks that arise from rather forced rhymes, such as "Mommy grubby / . . . Mommy chubby" and "Mommy lazy / clumsy Mommy-whoopsy-daisy," when combined with Chapman's comically detailed illustrations, these comments lean more towards a spirit of whimsy rather than casting aspersions. While Chapman's charmingly depicted creatures range from exotic lemurs and anteaters to more familiar barnyard inhabitants, the devoted connection between the mothers and their offspring becomes the universal theme that unites them all. Scoring high on the exuberance scale, the rollicking recital is bound to be warmly embraced by the preschool set. (Picture book. 3-5)Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2004

In this third story about Bear and his friends, Bear struggles to stay awake during the group's holiday preparations. On Christmas Eve, all the other animals fall asleep, but Bear stays up all night making presents for the others. He's so busy with his work that he misses the appearance of Santa, who pauses at the cave door to fill all their stockings. On Christmas morning, the smaller animals enjoy their own gifts and then surprise Bear with a comfy quilt for his long-awaited winter slumber. The rollicking rhyming text is punctuated with the regular refrain of "but the bear stays up," which will surely be chanted gleefully by children listening to this story. The illustrations do a fine job with animal expressions and with difficult situations such as a mole popping corn and a Raven stirring up some fruitcake. The oversized format includes many double-page spreads with the bumbling, big-hearted bear in action and then finally settling down for a long winter's nap, after which Bear had better be back. (Picture book. 3-7)Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 1, 2004

You can judge this book by its cover. Precisely as promised, it is thickly packed with rhymes, songs, and a few well-told tales—25 in all. The cover painting of crows escaping from a pie is a perfect example of the fine artwork inside. This is a collection for the youngest set of story-lovers and lap-time snugglers. Each one is a classic, well-known and well-loved by generations with shorter versions like "Little Bo Peep," which includes only the first verse and longer ones such as "Mary Had a Little Lamb" with four verses. Some tales offer a variation on the classic. In "The Three Little Pigs," for instance, the third pig is a female and in the "Little Red Hen" she doesn't have chicks with whom to share her bread. The compilation is generously illustrated in rich, warm tones on white with attention to detail without clutter. The characters, animal and human alike, are pudgy and benevolently expressive. From "Hey Diddle, Diddle" to "Pussy Cat, Pussy Cat," this is a bountiful treasury of gems. (Anthology. 2-5)Read full book review >
TIGRESS by Nick Dowson
by Nick Dowson, illustrated by Jane Chapman
Released: June 1, 2004

A tigress raises two cubs in this brief, poetic picture book that lends itself equally well to a read-aloud or independent reading. Sensuous present-tense text presents the tigress as mother, hunter, and, above all, force of nature. Chapman's bright, full-bleed acrylics make the most of the text, lush spreads giving equal weight to beauty and savagery (a stop-motion kill is most effective), the primary type set against faint paisley patterns that move in and out of the jungle background. Italicized snippets provide hard facts that supplement the more emotive narrative: "[The cubs] are too small to walk far, so the tigress uses tooth power" is glossed by, "Tiger cubs have loose skin on their necks, which makes them easy to lift." The whole takes itself seriously as nonfiction, an index (with a little lesson in how to use it) providing access to the paged text that precedes it. A brief author's note gives a few more facts about tigers and their current endangered status today, and it is, refreshingly, as easy for primary graders to read as the main narrative. A lovely, solid package. (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-8)Read full book review >
DILLY DUCKLING by Claire Freedman
Released: Feb. 1, 2004

The wind blows away one of Dilly Duckling's downy feathers and she enlists the help of friends to get it back. While chasing dragonflies and blue butterflies one sunny morning, Dilly is dismayed to find that a gust of wind has blown away one of her feathers. After a dizzy chase, she first bumps into her friend, the porcupine, and then a field mouse; both try to help Dilly retrieve the elusive bit of fluff. Tired and frustrated, a resigned Dilly goes home to tell her mother, who lets her know that losing her fluffy feathers is all part of growing up. Bright acrylic paintings seem blown across the pages by the same winds that have stolen Dilly's feather. A breezy look at the changes of growing up. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
I LOVE MY MAMA by Peter Kavanagh
Released: April 1, 2003

Mother and baby elephant share their day stamping across the plains, taking a dip in the water, and finally snuggling into the tall grass. Lyrical verses describe the day's events, interrupted only occasionally by awkward rhymes. "The pale sun rises through the morning mist. I love my mama on days like this." Likewise "higher" and "river," "plains" and "games, "together" and "each other." Trifling, but easily avoided. Protecting her calf from the driving winds of a storm and then frolicking with him in a game of chase, the mother pachyderm is at once mother and playmate to her young child. Splashing and laughing in the water, mother and child share an affectionate rub of their trunks. As the stars come out, the mother elephant tells her child ancient tales before snuggling with her to fall asleep. Rich and realistic double-paged spreads offer full glory to the giant pair, yet keep intimate this sweet tale of a mother's love from the perspective of a child. Lovely details will make this a special favorite for elephant fans. (Picture book. 1-4)Read full book review >
BEAR WANTS MORE by Karma Wilson
Released: Jan. 1, 2003

Bear's ravenous appetite is the focus of this rollicking follow-up to Wilson's Bear Snores On (2001). Upon awakening from his winter siesta, Bear is beset by a voracious hunger. Although his woodland friends attempt to assuage the bruin's cravings, Mouse's offering of berries, Hare's clover, and Badger's catch of the day do little to quiet the grumbling of the behemoth's belly. While Bear is out foraging, the rest of his friends prepare a feast fit for a famished friend of epic proportions. Wilson's cheerfully irreverent tale pays homage to another hungry bear, known for his penchant for honey, in a tongue-in-cheek scene where the formerly svelte Bear can no longer fit through his den's opening to reach the tantalizing meal inside. Satiated at last by his friend's bountiful springtime picnic, the satisfied Bear soon drifts off to sleep. Wilson's use of the repetitive refrain "Bear wants more" teases readers' appetites for more—of the story—neatly building the anticipation for the tale's surprise ending. The sing-song rhythm of the rhyming couplets lends sprightliness to the ebullient tale. Chapman's acrylic paintings sparkle with the freshness of the vernal season; vibrant, varying shades of greens drench the pages in a riot of blossoming hues. Bear is rendered as appealing as ever; this lovable lump of soft brown fur is as cozy and comforting as a well-loved teddy. Fans will enjoy the fun of revisiting with this convivial pack of forest friends. (Picture book. 3-7)Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2002

Godwin and Chapman (The Best Fall of All, not reviewed, etc.) reunite for their third beginning reader about the team of a big dog named Happy and a mischievous kitten named Honey. The little marmalade-striped kitten wants to help with Christmas preparations, but she causes some minor mischief with tree decorating and holiday baking, giving the more mature dog (and emergent readers) plenty of opportunity to practice saying "no" in various ways. They wait together in front of the fireplace for Christmas to come and are rewarded for their patience with treats in their stockings on Christmas morning. The simple story is written for children who are just starting to read on their own, using a few basic words in larger type and just one or two simple sentences per page. While the story isn't groundbreaking, it does provide opportunities for new readers to see the holiday words in context, and Chapman's dog and kitten are engaging characters. Even children who are just beginning to read will be able to read the repetitive "No, no, Honey!" refrain (something every child has already heard more than once). (Easy reader. 4-7)Read full book review >
BEAR SNORES ON by Karma Wilson
Released: Jan. 1, 2002

Snug in his cave, not even some visitors seeking shelter from the storm can wake Bear. Mouse arrives and builds a small fire to warm the chilly air. Hare arrives and they pop corn and brew tea, but even the slurping and burping doesn't bother Bear. Even when Badger passes out crunchy honey nuts and more guests begin arriving, "Bear snores on." By the time Gopher, Mole, Wren, and Raven arrive, it's a full-blown party. "And they nibble and they munch with a chew-chomp-crunch! But the bear snores on." Nothing seems to bother Bear, at least until an errant pepper flake from the stew tickles his nose. Sneezing awake, Bear is furious, but not because everyone is having a party in his cave, but because he has slept through it all. The other animals comfort Bear by insisting that the party is just beginning. Stories and food carry the party until dawn and as all the other animals snuggle in to sleep, only Bear is left awake unable to recapture his slumber. An icy blue palette illustrates the cold winter night, while the cave's interior is rendered in warm tones of reds and browns. The delightful illustrations on over-sized pages depicting the animals' party are the perfect accompaniment to the lyrical text. Little ones will snuggle into bed on a snowy night to hear this one. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
ONE TINY TURTLE by Nicola Davies
Released: Aug. 1, 2001

This beautifully designed story of a loggerhead sea turtle uses an oversized format and glorious acrylic paintings for a work that is both entertaining and informative. Davies (Bat Loves the Night, p. 1120, etc.) focuses on one female turtle called Loggerhead, recounting her life from infancy through her own eggs hatching 30 years later on the same beach where Loggerhead was born. In an inspired design device, the main story is told with large type set against the turquoise blue of the ocean or the soft beige of the beach, and additional relevant facts are included in a smaller typeface set in blocks of wavy lines that are smoothly incorporated into many spreads. Through this device, an adult reader can focus on just Loggerhead's individual story (saving the additional facts for later), or pause during the story to include the deeper explanations of sea turtle biology and behavior. Chapman's (One Duck Stuck, not reviewed, etc.) exquisite paintings bring Loggerhead's world to life, with full-bleed spreads of the big, blue ocean and groups of smaller illustrations framed in soft green. The baby sea turtle on the cover looks as though she might crawl right off the cover and into your hand, and it's hard to imagine a more appealing sea creature. Recommended for school- and public-library collections. (Picture book/nonfiction. 4-8)Read full book review >
THE VERY BUSY DAY by Diana Hendry
Released: March 1, 2001

Big Mouse out-drones the Little Red Hen in this clash of wills that's a companion volume to Hendry's The Very Noisy Night (1999). As Big Mouse works in the garden, he tries to enlist the help of Little Mouse, but Little Mouse begs leave: "I'm busy thinking about my dream." Big Mouse continues to hector Little Mouse: come plant the seeds; come help weed; come give me a hand pushing the wheelbarrow to the dump; come pick berries with me. Little Mouse always has a handy and frivolous excuse: There's dreaming to be done, daisies to be chained, clover to be picked, feathers to be collected. Ultimately, a more practical aspect is revealed behind Little Mouse's seemingly random doings: a beautiful sun hat for Big Mouse. Why doesn't Big Mouse try it on, take a break in the hammock, and—say—why not sample a few of those berries? Big Mouse almost declines the gift, which seems a bit much even for so sour a puss, but agrees to the brief foray into serendipity. Verdant artwork, full of humorous visual asides, softens the stridency, but Big Mouse's priggishness overwhelms Little Mouse's whimsicality and tends to curdle the whole proceedings. Leo Lionni said it first and better in Frederick. (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
RUN WITH THE WIND by Caroline Pitcher
Released: June 1, 1998

Pitcher's story of separation anxiety, here played out by a foal and its mother, will have relevance to children who have experienced similar worries. The foal is an uneasy creature: It is upset by the wind, and the night. More unsettling are its mother's intimations that they will not always be together: "You won't think of me then." This puzzles the foal. "Why won't I think of you?" it asks. "Because you won't." When the day comes—the mother leaves to give rides to children—the foal almost faints, but in no time, it begins to play with the wind: Instant independence. Handsome illustrations can't keep the story from feeling a little pat, and the mother is—for readers—callous. (Picture book. 3-7) Read full book review >