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LITTLE BAT IN NIGHT SCHOOL

From the Bat Book series

Quiet and hopeful, this animal-themed school story rings true.

After a rough start, Little Bat’s first night at school is all he hoped it would be.

Little Bat is all ready for school. His supplies are laid out, including his new “batpack” with a rather leggy snack inside. He is so excited he can hardly sleep. But soon night falls, and it is time for Mama Bat to bring him to school. The school is bigger than Little Bat expected, but the teacher, a raccoon named Mrs. C., welcomes him right in. His classmates are all other night creatures: raccoons, owlets, a ferret, and some other bats who aren’t very friendly. When Little Bat flies into a cubby to hide, he finds another student hanging upside down too, an opossum named Ophelia. They become friends, and the rest of the night improves. The little creatures learn together, play together, and listen to a story until the sun starts to rise and it is time to go home. Lies’ distinct artistic style brings the characters to life, showcasing personalities, relationships, and action against a largely white background. The ups and downs of the classroom are captured with delicacy and sensitivity, a useful model of the changing social dynamics that can turn strangers to playmates and new adults into trusted teachers. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Quiet and hopeful, this animal-themed school story rings true. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: June 29, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-358-26984-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: May 18, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2021

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RUBY FINDS A WORRY

From the Big Bright Feelings series

A valuable asset to the library of a child who experiences anxiety and a great book to get children talking about their...

Ruby is an adventurous and happy child until the day she discovers a Worry.

Ruby barely sees the Worry—depicted as a blob of yellow with a frowny unibrow—at first, but as it hovers, the more she notices it and the larger it grows. The longer Ruby is affected by this Worry, the fewer colors appear on the page. Though she tries not to pay attention to the Worry, which no one else can see, ignoring it prevents her from enjoying the things that she once loved. Her constant anxiety about the Worry causes the bright yellow blob to crowd Ruby’s everyday life, which by this point is nearly all washes of gray and white. But at the playground, Ruby sees a boy sitting on a bench with a growing sky-blue Worry of his own. When she invites the boy to talk, his Worry begins to shrink—and when Ruby talks about her own Worry, it also grows smaller. By the book’s conclusion, Ruby learns to control her Worry by talking about what worries her, a priceless lesson for any child—or adult—conveyed in a beautifully child-friendly manner. Ruby presents black, with hair in cornrows and two big afro-puff pigtails, while the boy has pale skin and spiky black hair.

A valuable asset to the library of a child who experiences anxiety and a great book to get children talking about their feelings (. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5476-0237-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Posted Online: May 7, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2019

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THE HUGASAURUS

Gently models kindness and respect—positive behavior that can be applied daily.

A group of young “dinosauruses” go out into the world on their own.

A fuchsia little Hugasaurus and her Pappysaur (both of whom resemble Triceratops) have never been apart before, but Hugasaurus happily heads off with lunchbox in hand and “wonder in her heart” to make new friends. The story has a first-day-of-school feeling, but Hugasaurus doesn’t end up in a formal school environment; rather, she finds herself on a playground with other little prehistoric creatures, though no teacher or adult seems to be around. At first, the new friends laugh and play. But Hugasaurus’ pals begin to squabble, and play comes to a halt. As she wonders what to do, a fuzzy platypus playmate asks some wise questions (“What…would your Pappy say to do? / What makes YOU feel better?”), and Hugasaurus decides to give everyone a hug—though she remembers to ask permission first. Slowly, good humor is restored and play begins anew with promises to be slow to anger and, in general, to help create a kinder world. Short rhyming verses occasionally use near rhyme but also include fun pairs like ripples and double-triples. Featuring cozy illustrations of brightly colored creatures, the tale sends a strong message about appropriate and inappropriate ways to resolve conflict, the final pages restating the lesson plainly in a refrain that could become a classroom motto. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Gently models kindness and respect—positive behavior that can be applied daily. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: Dec. 6, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-338-82869-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Orchard/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 27, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2022

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