A bold, inspiring work for forward-thinking early readers.

WHEN I GROW UP

Zephaniah answers that oft-asked adult inquiry, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” with 13 examples of everyday grown-ups following their dreams.

His light yet substantial rhymed lyrics and Das’ engaging workplace photographs spotlight a wonderfully provocative array of career options. From Maggie the rocket scientist —“all that Maggie wants to do is / Tour the universe”—to Ness the jumbo-jet pilot, David the farmer or Shami the lawyer—“Nobody should bully you, / Shami knows that this is true”—these verse portraits depict actual professionals who not only love what they do, but whose work enriches the lives of others. American readers may be challenged by a few Briticisms from the likes of Bubblz the “Maths Clown,” vet Michelle—“If your dog is dodgy / Or your snake is sloppy / Michelle can fix it with a pill”—or, most hilariously, Ajmer the “Lollypop Man,” whom American children should easily recognize as a crossing guard, not a purveyor of sweets. Such cultural linguistic differences only heighten the great ethnic, gender and vocational diversity of the collection, offering countless jumping-off points for discussion. In the short bios accompanying the poems and photos, Zephaniah also smartly expands the range of future possibilities to include living in more than one place and the freedom to change your mind a number of times about careers.

A bold, inspiring work for forward-thinking early readers. (Informational picture book/poetry. 6-10)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-84780-059-6

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Frances Lincoln

Review Posted Online: Aug. 22, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2012

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

An uncomplicated opener, with some funny bits and a clear but not heavy agenda.

BOOKMARKS ARE PEOPLE TOO!

From the Here's Hank series , Vol. 1

Hank Zipzer, poster boy for dyslexic middle graders everywhere, stars in a new prequel series highlighting second-grade trials and triumphs.

Hank’s hopes of playing Aqua Fly, a comic-book character, in the upcoming class play founder when, despite plenty of coaching and preparation, he freezes up during tryouts. He is not particularly comforted when his sympathetic teacher adds a nonspeaking role as a bookmark to the play just for him. Following the pattern laid down in his previous appearances as an older child, he gets plenty of help and support from understanding friends (including Ashley Wong, a new apartment-house neighbor). He even manages to turn lemons into lemonade with a quick bit of improv when Nick “the Tick” McKelty, the sneering classmate who took his preferred role, blanks on his lines during the performance. As the aforementioned bully not only chokes in the clutch and gets a demeaning nickname, but is fat, boastful and eats like a pig, the authors’ sensitivity is rather one-sided. Still, Hank has a winning way of bouncing back from adversity, and like the frequent black-and-white line-and-wash drawings, the typeface is designed with easy legibility in mind.

An uncomplicated opener, with some funny bits and a clear but not heavy agenda. (Fiction. 7-9)

Pub Date: Feb. 14, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-448-48239-2

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: Dec. 11, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2014

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Fans both young and formerly young will be pleased—100 percent.

HORTON AND THE KWUGGERBUG AND MORE LOST STORIES

Published in magazines, never seen since / Now resurrected for pleasure intense / Versified episodes numbering four / Featuring Marco, and Horton and more!

All of the entries in this follow-up to The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories (2011) involve a certain amount of sharp dealing. Horton carries a Kwuggerbug through crocodile-infested waters and up a steep mountain because “a deal is a deal”—and then is cheated out of his promised share of delicious Beezlenuts. Officer Pat heads off escalating, imagined disasters on Mulberry Street by clubbing a pesky gnat. Marco (originally met on that same Mulberry Street) concocts a baroque excuse for being late to school. In the closer, a smooth-talking Grinch (not the green sort) sells a gullible Hoobub a piece of string. In a lively introduction, uber-fan Charles D. Cohen (The Seuss, The Whole Seuss, and Nothing but the Seuss, 2002) provides publishing histories, places characters and settings in Seussian context, and offers insights into, for instance, the origin of “Grinch.” Along with predictably engaging wordplay—“He climbed. He grew dizzy. His ankles grew numb. / But he climbed and he climbed and he clum and he clum”—each tale features bright, crisply reproduced renditions of its original illustrations. Except for “The Hoobub and the Grinch,” which has been jammed into a single spread, the verses and pictures are laid out in spacious, visually appealing ways.

Fans both young and formerly young will be pleased—100 percent. (Picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: Sept. 9, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-385-38298-4

Page Count: 56

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: June 4, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2014

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more