Books by Kelly DiPucchio

GRACE GOES TO WASHINGTON by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 3, 2019

"A layered story with educational and entertainment appeal. (author's note, suggested activities, chart of checks and balances) (Picture book. 6-10)"
Grace learns about the branches of government and uses a democratic process at school to make their community a kinder place. Read full book review >
WE'RE GOING ON A TREASURE HUNT by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 16, 2019

"Arr-propriate for multiple rereadings and more fun than a bottle of rum! (Picture book. 3-6)"
Forget the bears. Treasure's the name of the game in this reimagining of a storytime staple. Read full book review >
POE WON'T GO by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Oct. 16, 2018

"A cute escapade for the silliest readers. (Picture book. 3-7)"
A pink elephant named Poe sits in the middle of a town's only road and won't budge—until someone bothers to find out why he's there. Read full book review >
SUPER MANNY CLEANS UP! by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: July 10, 2018

"A gentle lesson to always listen to your inner hero and help others do the same. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Super Manny (Super Manny Stands Up!, 2017) returns to tackle an important environmental concern. Read full book review >
HOW TO GROW HAPPINESS by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 8, 2018

"Like Jerome's, its heart is in the right place. (Picture book. 3-6)"
With the help of his forest friends, gnome Jerome learns a valuable lesson about happiness—or maybe gardening. Read full book review >
SUPER MANNY STANDS UP! by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: July 4, 2017

"With great read-aloud potential, this story could be used by both parents and teachers to introduce concepts of courage and standing up to bullies from the youngest preschoolers up. (Picture book. 4-8)"
This charming story marries the mania for superheroes with a potent anti-bullying message, making it an apt tale for present times. Read full book review >
LITTLES by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 13, 2017

"There's plenty of room on the shelf for this celebration of the similarities and connections among all our adorable littles. (Picture book. 2-4)"
"Littles are loved from the moment they're born. / They're swaddled, / and coddled, / and kissed every morn." Read full book review >
ANTOINETTE by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"A reassuring tale that celebrates the uniqueness of each dog (or person) and the creation of a purposeful life. Three cheers for the winning Antoinette, who 'could not—would not—give up!' (Picture book. 2-7) "
The beloved puppies of Gaston (2014) are back, this time with Antoinette's story of self-discovery as she reveals that every dog has a gift to share. Read full book review >
EVERYONE LOVES CUPCAKE by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"A picture-book treat. (Picture book. 3-8)"
A sweet follow-up to DiPucchio and Wight's Everyone Loves Bacon (2015). Read full book review >
DRAGON WAS TERRIBLE by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Aug. 23, 2016

"This is one terribly good dragon tale that will leave readers laughing and with an appreciation for the healing power of a good book. (Picture book. 3-8)"
In this comical tale, one kingdom is fed up with its disobedient dragon. Read full book review >
ONE LITTLE TWO LITTLE THREE LITTLE CHILDREN by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 3, 2016

"An uneven effort at inclusion. (Picture book. 3-5)"
A multicultural spin on an old rhyme stops short of rehabilitating its problematic history. Read full book review >
EVERYONE LOVES BACON by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A bacon book so funny that perhaps even some vegetarians will love it. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Retro art meets wry humor in this very funny tale of hubris set in a diner. Read full book review >
ZOMBIE IN LOVE 2 + 1 by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 6, 2015

"Rare is the entertaining story that has equal appeal at Valentine's Day and Halloween. Share with a slightly older audience who will fully appreciate the silly yet wonderfully gross details. (Picture book. 5-8)"
Zombie couple Mildred and Mortimer find a live baby on their doorstep. Although happy to be parents, taking care of a new baby often scares them to death. Read full book review >
DOG DAYS OF SCHOOL by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 17, 2014

"The conclusion kids might draw? Going to school isn't nearly as bad as being a dog. (Picture book. 5-8)"
"Be careful what you wish for" is just one of the messages in this humorous book about switching places. Read full book review >
GASTON by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 3, 2014

"A perfect read aloud that will leave them begging for more—an absolute delight. (Picture book. 2-7)"
Gaston, an adorable pup, lives with his loving and proper poodle pack, until an outing reveals there's more to family than meets the eye. Read full book review >
CRAFTY CHLOE by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Aug. 20, 2013

"Share this lively tale of bighearted friendship and originality with young readers needing a little zest for life. A corresponding website provides crafting ideas and instructions. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Chloe finds herself once again with a cliffhanger of a problem (Crafty Chloe, 2012). And it involves her two best friends. Can her creative powers get her out of this pickle? Read full book review >
CRAFTY CHLOE by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Feb. 21, 2012

"Required reading for any child going to a birthday party. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Crafty Chloe is the creative cousin of Clementine. Ginger haired, with an adorable taste in free-to-be-me outfits and a heart of gold, this young heroine finds original and kind-hearted solutions to big problems. Read full book review >
GILBERT GOLDFISH WANTS A PET by Kelly DiPucchio
ANIMALS
Released: June 9, 2011

A fresh, funny take on a popular topic—the perfect pet. Read full book review >
ALFRED ZECTOR, BOOK COLLECTOR by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 1, 2010

Shy, bespectacled Alfred doesn't fit in with other kids; perhaps because of this, he falls in love with books at an early age and determines to collect them all. Finally, Alfred manages to round up the last book in town and, unsure of what to do, settles into his home to read each and every volume. Meanwhile, without books, life becomes dull for the other inhabitants of the town. When the very well-read and much older Alfred emerges, he brings books for the people as well as a lesson about sharing them. Pamintuan's bright, shiny, sharp-edged illustrations portray the young boy amid towering stacks and the rolling landscape of his small town as he and his collection grow, while tight, crisp rhymes trace his journey. If the story is both a tad predictable and a bit confusing (why did Alfred collect books if he didn't intend to read them?), the colorful pictures will draw children in, and the sprightly text will hold their attention. While its ultimate message may be worthy, however, this parable may be a little too opaque for child readers. (Picture book. 5-7)Read full book review >
THE SANDWICH SWAP by Rania Al Abdullah
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 27, 2010

Like all best friends, Lily and Salma do everything together: They draw pictures, play on the swings, jump rope and eat lunch together. But Lily eats a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich while Salma eats a hummus-and-pita sandwich. Each girl thinks the other's looks yucky! When they say so, the friendship splits, schoolkids take sides and someone yells FOOD FIGHT! Salma and Lily feel ashamed, especially when they are called into the principal's office. The next day they sample each other's sandwiches and declare them delicious. They go to the principal's office again, this time with an idea to share—a gatefold depicts a long picnic table overflowing with ethnic food and happy kids. Tusa's whimsical illustrations spice up the story. Her large, vivacious drawings contribute character and comic touches, especially to the food fight, but there is one notable omission in this story of cultural understanding: Absent from the picnic table's array of flags identifying ethnicities (which include Iceland, Greece and Mexico among others, in addition to the United States and Jordan) is the Israeli flag—a hugely sad missed opportunity. (author's note) (Picture book. 4-7)Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 1, 2008

There's no printed music but few readers will feel the lack, as DiPucchio expertly recasts 18 chestnuts into rousingly icky versions that practically sing themselves. Introducing such soon-to-be-favorites as "Do Your Guts Hang Low?" "99 Bottles of Blood on the Wall" and the genuinely revolting "Blow, Blow, Blow Your Nose," this collection makes Judy Sierra's Monster Goose (2001) and even Alan Katz's takeoffs seem positively restrained. As is his wont, Grimly spatters his dark scenes with unidentifiable substances and populates them with grotesquely misshapen creatures—who, thankfully, look down or aside rather than directly out at viewers. Children who enjoy being creeped out won't be able to get enough: "Home, home of the strange, / where the feared and the freaks come to play. / Where the stench in the air / comes from goon underwear / and the kids are all pasty and gray." All together now. (Poetry. 8-12) Read full book review >
GRACE FOR PRESIDENT by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Feb. 26, 2008

"A timely, well-constructed explanation brought down to a level anyone can comprehend. (author's note) (Picture book. 7-10)"
When Mrs. Barrington rolls out a poster displaying all the U.S. presidents' portraits, the observing and bold Grace Campbell asks, "Where are the GIRLS?" Read full book review >
MRS. MCBLOOM, CLEAN UP YOUR CLASSROOM! by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 2005

A retiring teacher has a final assignment for her final class: Find a creative way to clean out 50 years of displays, decorations, supplies, science and crafts projects, books, lost lunches and like clutter to make way for her successor. Bustling about energetically beneath a huge gray beehive, Mrs. McBloom positively exudes teacherly lovability, but though Francis makes a valiant effort to show a half-century's clutter, he draws rather too neatly to carry it off. Still, there's plenty to pore over in the illustrations, from a potted seedling that grows over the years into a huge, gnarled apple tree to tottering stacks of volumes (many with titles related to keeping classrooms in order), scampering rodents of diverse sorts and middens of bric-a-brac. Ultimately, capable young Georgia Peachpit comes up with a winning strategy—invite all of Mrs. McBloom's former students (nearly everyone in the hamlet of Up Yonder) to carry off one item—and the teacher gets a warm send-off. A happy tale of community cooperation as well as a celebration of a career well spent. (Picture book. 6-8)Read full book review >
DINOSNORES by Kelly DiPucchio
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 1, 2005

How did the dinosaurs get ready for bed? "They bathed and brushed and fluffed their ferns / around the dino site . . . / then laid their horns and spikes to rest / and kissed their eggs good night." Plainly modeled on the toy dinosaurs that are part of so many young readers' kit bags, huge, toothy figures in jellybean colors settle down, many clutching plushies, all about a prehistoric landscape. And were dinosaurs quiet sleepers? Not so—in fact, the cumulative effect of all those thunderous "Proto-grunts, / Diplo-hoots, / Allo-snorts / and Tyranno-toots" drove amphibians out of the water, ignited volcanoes and ultimately caused the Earth itself to crack open, sending the modern continents adrift. Along with proposing a novel theory of plate tectonics, this poke at the past will produce from children the same sort of Tyranno-toots as Jane Yolen's How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? (2000). (Picture book. 6-8)Read full book review >
WHAT’S THE MAGIC WORD? by Kelly DiPucchio
ANIMALS
Released: Jan. 1, 2005

Most pre-readers know the answer to that one—and they'd better, to make sense of this breezy (in several senses) but confusing effort. A sudden wind carries newly hatched Little Chick off to a cow's stall, where his request for shelter is met with a counter-request for the Magic Word. No sooner does he learn that it's not "Peep-peep" but "Moo-moo," than that wind sweeps him away to a beehive—where the Word's not "Moo-moo" but "Buzz-buzz." And so on, past hound ("Bow-wow"), owl ("Hoo-hoo") and pig ("Oink-oink"), until Little Chick fetches up back at the nest, where his mother informs him that the Magic Word is none of the above—it's "Please." Advocates of an English-only curriculum, take note. Little Chick and his mom look like ruffled, diminutive cousins of Big Bird in Winborn's simple farmyard scenes, but there the resemblance to Sesame Street's multicultural viewpoint ends. (Picture book. 5-7)Read full book review >
LIBERTY’S JOURNEY by Kelly DiPucchio
ADVENTURE
Released: Sept. 1, 2004

Lady Liberty steps out for a cross-country adventure in this intriguing story illustrated with striking paintings by Caldecott Medalist Egielski. He captures the calm beauty of the statue, expanding the given parameters to create an inquisitive but shy personality for the colossal, copper-clad character. She walks westward, seeing the sights, until she reaches the Pacific Ocean, when she realizes she misses her home in New York. She returns to her special place, shown in a sweeping spread of Lady Liberty against the nighttime city skyline. The rhyming text describing the statue's journey employs some evocative language, but also has some verses with a sing-song quality and a few lines that don't quite scan. Elementary-school teachers will find lots of uses for this in their classrooms, as the story is applicable to lessons in history, geography, math, and creative writing. An author's note provides additional information about the Statue of Liberty as well as the words to the poem inscribed on its base. (Picture book. 4-8)Read full book review >
BED HOGS by Kelly DiPucchio
ANIMALS
Released: May 1, 2004

DiPucchio debuts with a porcine variation on "Ten in the Bed," featuring a loud-mouthed piglet who manages to edge his five family members off the communal straw pile one by one: "I'm squished! / I'm squashed! / I'm buried in this heap! / You're hoggin' up my space in bed. / I'll never get to sleep!" No one else approaches Fine for pigs in pictures, but here he outdoes himself with a set of enormously fat porkers (individualized by odd items of human dress) sprawling hugely across the spreads, snoring, drooling, sleep dancing, or otherwise keeping Little Runt awake. In "Zzz End," Little Runt can't sleep alone, and so invites groggy parents and siblings back on board: "Ahhhhh, much better!" A good start for the author and hilarious work from Fine. (Picture book. 5-7)Read full book review >