Books by Will Hillenbrand

OFF WE GO! by Will Hillenbrand
Released: Sept. 15, 2013

"A winner all around. (Picture book. 3-7)"
A good friend will help you prepare for your challenges and will see you through them, as Bear does for Mole in another charming tale in the series from Hillenbrand (Kite Day, 2012, etc.) Read full book review >
BEAR IN LOVE by Daniel Pinkwater
Released: Aug. 14, 2012

"There's lots to love here. (Picture book. 3-5)"
A friendly little whodunit results in an unexpected romance between a bear and a bunny. Read full book review >
KITE DAY by Will Hillenbrand
Released: March 1, 2012

"This gentle and charming read-aloud will make young audiences "awww" with delight. (Picture book. 3-6)"
In this breezy kite affair, the adorable duo of Bear and Mole is back again, reveling in nature. Read full book review >
SNEEZE, BIG BEAR, SNEEZE! by Maureen Wright
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2011

"Still, though the bounce of Wright's verse is welcome, the story is all too slender; for truly satisfying ursine braggadocio, try How Chipmunk Got His Stripes, by Joseph and James Bruchac, illustrated by José Aruego and Ariane Dewey (2001). (Picture book. 3-6) "
Big Bear gets in all kinds of trouble when he takes credit for the work of the wind. Read full book review >
SPRING IS HERE by Will Hillenbrand
Released: March 1, 2011

"A sweet, simple tale of the lengths we all go to in the name of friendship…and spring. (Picture book. 3-6)"
Mole is absolutely thrilled that spring has finally arrived. Read full book review >
MOTHER GOOSE PICTURE PUZZLES by Will Hillenbrand
Released: March 1, 2011

Hillenbrand introduces the idea of rebuses to newly emergent readers with a gathering of likely-to-be-familiar Mother Goose rhymes—from "Hey diddle, diddle, / the [cat] and the [fiddle]" to "Twinkle, twinkle, little [star]." Read full book review >
DON'T SLAM THE DOOR! by Dori Chaconas
ANIMALS
Released: Aug. 1, 2010

"Begs to be read aloud one-on-one and shared in a storytime setting. (Picture book. 4-8)"
This cause-and-effect tale with a catchy rhythm begins with a green-eyed, red-pig-tailed girl shouting: "Please don't slam the door! / Don't slam that old screen door! / A slamming door will wake the cat, / and heaven knows, we don't want that, / so please don't slam that door!" Read full book review >
SLEEP, BIG BEAR, SLEEP! by Maureen Wright
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2009

"Bear-gets-ready-for-winter books abound, but this one's worth adding to any collection. (Picture book. 3-8)"
Big Bear is hard of hearing, so each time Old Man Winter tries to tell him to "Sleep, Big Bear, sleep," he hears something different, from "drive a jeep" to "leap" to "dive deep." Read full book review >
LOUIE! by Will Hillenbrand
ANIMALS
Released: April 1, 2009

"His prose, however, though clearly a heartfelt homage, strains to wrestle Bemelmans's biography into a playfully childlike story with only limited success. (Picture book. 6-8)"
The artistic journey of a porcine Parisian painter. Read full book review >
ONE FINE TRADE by Bobbi Miller
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: March 15, 2009

"Consider as a fresh and funny alternative to George Shannon's Piney Woods Peddler (1981) or the various singleton versions of "Hans in Luck." (Picture book/folktale. 6-9)"
In this sprightly Southern rendition of a familiar folktale, Georgy Piney Woods sets out to trade a "rail-skinny horse" for a "shiny silver dollar" to buy his daughter Georgianne a wedding dress. Read full book review >
BABY DRAGON by Amy Ehrlich
ANIMALS
Released: Aug. 1, 2008

"While the illustrations are appealing and colorful and the repetitive nature of the storytelling engaging in its predictability, this story may well frighten the young children it's aimed at. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Mother Dragon instructs her baby to wait for her by the red fern while she visits his grandmother, telling him she'll be back by morning but neglecting to explain why he's being left behind. Read full book review >
COCK-A-DOODLE CHRISTMAS! by Will Hillenbrand
ANIMALS
Released: Oct. 1, 2007

"Hillenbrand's illustrations in gouache, ink and collage feature large animals in deep earth tones contrasting well with the two appealing roosters in brilliant hues. (Picture book. 3-6)"
Hillenbrand offers an amusing and original Christmas story for younger children, with the familiar setting of the stable in Bethlehem and a cast of farm animals. Read full book review >
WHOPPER CAKE by Karma Wilson
FICTION
Released: July 10, 2007

"The language of the recipe for a junior-sized version of the dessert is a bit corny, but after engaging with the tale's good-humored action, kids will be watering at the mouth. (Picture book. 5-9)"
Written in verse, Wilson's original, folksy tall tale is given an industrial-strength boost from Hillenbrand's big, exuberant artwork. Read full book review >
CALENDAR by Myra Cohn Livingston
POETRY
Released: May 1, 2007

"A short, sweet treat for storytimes, and a nice impetus for families to discuss their own activities through the year. (Picture book/poetry. 3-6)"
Livingston's brief, through-the-months poem gets a vibrant treatment in this appealing picture book. Read full book review >
THE MOON MIGHT BE MILK by Lisa Shulman
ANIMALS
Released: March 1, 2007

"A sweet bedtime tale that's sure to elicit a cookie request. (recipe included) (Picture book. 3-6)"
Rosie wonders what the moon is made of; her cat purrs, "a saucer of fresh milk." Read full book review >
SMASH! MASH! CRASH! THERE GOES THE TRASH! by Barbara Odanaka
FICTION
Released: Oct. 1, 2006

"Young audiences will be happy to crash and bash right along with these familiar mechanical Wild Things. (Picture book. 6-8)"
Fans of Kate and Jim McMullan's I Stink! (2002) will welcome this look-alike, sound-alike return visit, as a pair of bright green trucks with backward-looking red eyes and huge mouths (even, in one startling scene, an oversized tongue) consume with relish a smorgasbord of broken furniture and garbage: "Rotten eggs? / Apple cores? / Pack 'em in—the engine ROARS. / Stinky diapers? / Coffee grounds? / Load it UP and smash it DOWN." Read full book review >
MY BOOK BOX by Will Hillenbrand
ANIMALS
Released: Aug. 1, 2006

"General instructions appended. (Picture book. 5-8)"
Conceived to kick off a library's summer reading campaign, this relentlessly purposeful outing presents a toddler-like elephant and frog duo demonstrating uses for an understandably rumpled-looking cardboard box. Read full book review >
PLEASE PLAY SAFE! by Margery Cuyler
ANIMALS
Released: Aug. 1, 2006

"Required reading for parents and children alike. (Picture book. 3-6)"
Penguin's second outing is all about playground safety, with a healthy dose of good manners and respect thrown in for good measure. Read full book review >
WHAT A TREASURE! by Jane Hillenbrand
ANIMALS
Released: March 15, 2006

"The first effort from this husband and wife team plainly conveys with animals and nature the adage, "one man's junk is another man's treasure" for early ages. (Picture book. 3-5)"
The day that Mole gets his new shovel, he starts to dig for treasure despite his brother betting that he won't find any. Read full book review >
THIS LITTLE PIGGY by Jane Yolen
NONFICTION
Released: March 1, 2006

"If comprehensiveness is a consideration, this is a must for a collection. (Picture book. 1-5)"
Divided into the types of games parents and children can play as they read these rhymes, this collection focuses on lifting, bumping, wiggling, clapping and pantomiming motions. Read full book review >
THE BUMPY LITTLE PUMPKIN by Margery Cuyler
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Aug. 1, 2005

In this holiday-themed retread of The Biggest, Best Snowman (1998), Little Nell once again "proves" (with plenty of help) that she's more capable than her two big sisters suppose. Read full book review >
THE JOURNEY OF THE ONE AND ONLY DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE by Judith St. George
HISTORY
Released: May 1, 2005

"Children will probably love it, but whether they will get any honest history out of it is a different question. (bibliography) (Picture book. 5-9)"
This is undeniably winning; whether it is good, however, is up for discussion. Read full book review >
ASLEEP IN THE STABLE by Will Hillenbrand
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2004

"Hillenbrand's mixed-media collage illustrations are just as successful as his text, with pleasing variance in perspective and appealing owl characters. (Picture book. 3-7)"
From their perch high in the rafters of the stable, Baby Owl and Mama Owl look down on the manger scene in this delightful introduction to the Nativity story. Read full book review >
ONE, TWO, THREE O’LEARY by Malachy Doyle
BEDTIME BOOK
Released: Sept. 1, 2004

"And because the rhymes—or at least their infectious rhythms—are likely to be familiar to a wide range of children, the collection, with plenty to look at on each page, should easily attract children's attention. (Picture book. 3-7)"
There's really no plot here beyond ten small children cavorting in the spirit of "five little monkeys jumping on the bed." Read full book review >
PLEASE SAY PLEASE! by Margery Cuyler
ANIMALS
Released: April 1, 2004

"A must for every children's library—and for the frustrated parents of young ones. (Picture book. 3-7)"
The table manners of Penguin's dinner guests are under scrutiny in this delightful look at mealtime behavior. Read full book review >
DOWN ON THE FARM by Merrily Kutner
ANIMALS
Released: March 1, 2004

"Accompanying art is appropriately lighthearted and basic, if not overly simplistic due largely to heavy black outlines that give the flat images a slightly rudimentary, coloring-book quality that suits the text. (Picture book. 2-5)"
The three R's—rhythm, rhyme, and repetition—are harvested abundantly in this simple, sing-song introduction to farm animals for toddlers. Read full book review >
HERE WE GO ROUND THE MULBERRY BUSH by Will Hillenbrand
MUSIC AND THE ARTS
Released: Aug. 1, 2003

"A useful addition to the genre. (Picture book. 3-6)"
In a nursery song adaptation that's meant to be sung aloud, a little pig tells about his first day at Mulberry School. Read full book review >
’TWAS THE FRIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS by Judy Sierra
FICTION
Released: Oct. 1, 2002

"Legions of little monster fans will find this innovation more fun than the original. (Picture book. 3-7)"
For anyone who can't decide between Halloween surprises and Christmas cheer, here's a holiday smorgasbord of monsters and one tiny mouse serving as Santa with a sleigh pulled by eight bats. Read full book review >
LOOK OUT, JACK! THE GIANT IS BACK! by Tom Birdseye
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Sept. 15, 2001

"Great fun. (Picture book 5-8)"
Clever Jack of English folklore has stolen the hen that lays golden eggs, the harp that sings, and bags of money. Read full book review >
FIDDLE-I-FEE by Will Hillenbrand
MUSIC AND THE ARTS
Released: April 1, 2001

"Toe-tapping fun. (musical score) (Picture book. 3-7)"
Hillenbrand (Look Out, Jack! Read full book review >
PRESCHOOL TO THE RESCUE by Judy Sierra
FICTION
Released: April 1, 2001

"The preschoolers dressed in ultra-bright rain gear make it clear that a little mud never hurt anyone—in fact, it might even add to the fun. (Picture book. 3-7)"
In this mini-adventure, the grumpy villain is a deceptively deep puddle. Read full book review >
KISS THE COW! by Phyllis Root
ANIMALS
Released: Nov. 1, 2000

"Certain to be a hit with kids and adults, this deserves a big smooch. (Picture book. 3-6)"
A refreshing, original American tall tale. Read full book review >
DOWN BY THE STATION by Will Hillenbrand
Released: Sept. 1, 1999

"This is a happy book, filled with childhood exuberance. (Picture book. 3-6)"
Hillenbrand takes license with the familiar song (the traditional words and music are reproduced at the end) to tell an enchanting story about baby animals picked up by the train and delivered to the children's zoo. Read full book review >
THE BIGGEST, BEST SNOWMAN by Margery Cuyler
ANIMALS
Released: Nov. 1, 1998

"Hillenbrand's comic exaggerations put both the characters and the landscape powerfully in place. (Picture book. 4-7)"
This funny winter's tale from Cuyler features a girl who needs a boost of confidence to get past the teasing of her overwhelming, overbearing mother and sisters. Read full book review >
THE GOLDEN SANDAL by Rebecca Hickox
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: March 15, 1998

Hickox (Zorro and Quwi, 1997) finds her Cinderella in Maha, a fairy godmother in a red fish that Maha shows mercy to, and the lost slipper in a golden sandal, discovered by Tariq, brother of a rich merchant, who then takes on the search for his bride- to-be. Read full book review >
SAM SUNDAY AND THE MYSTERY AT THE OCEAN BEACH HOTEL by Robyn Supraner
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 1996

"Supraner and Hillenbrand employ mockery and mimicry on a grand scale, creating a minor hard-boiled masterpiece. (Picture book. 3-8)"
 Sam Sunday, bear detective, is miserable because no one remembered his birthday. Read full book review >
WICKED JACK by Connie Nordhielm Wooldridge
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Sept. 15, 1995

"Everything in these pictures belongs to the sphere of high comedy, and readers will hoot. (Picture book. 5-10)"
 Wooldridge's first book is stunning. Read full book review >
THE KING WHO TRIED TO FRY AN EGG ON HIS HEAD by Mirra Ginsburg
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: April 1, 1994

"No source given. (Folklore/Picture book. 5-8)"
 A Russian tale retold by a popular picture-book author (Mushroom in the Rain; Two Greedy Bears). Read full book review >
MOON WAS TIRED OF WALKING ON AIR by Natalia M. Belting
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

"A handsome, evocative collection, for a somewhat older audience than Joanna Troughton's retellings (How the Birds Changed Their Feathers; How Night Came; both 1986); a good supplement to Hamilton's In the Beginning (1988), which includes no South American material. (Folklore/Picture book. 7+)"
 ``In the time before this time...'' begins one of these 14 creation myths of the South American Indians. Read full book review >
I'M THE BEST! by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat
ANIMALS
Released: April 15, 1991

"Comical and heartwarming. (Picture book. 4- 8)"
 Dudley has had many owners (one gave him away for eating a plant; one moved; one died) and many names; now he's chosen as successor to another dog, one that died. Read full book review >