Combining education and intergenerational fun, this work will appeal to readers of all ages.

THE CHILDREN'S MOON

A boy learns about the moon and space in this picture book.

Sunny, a blond White child, notices that the moon and sun simultaneously appear in the daytime sky. Grandma says this is called “The Children’s Moon” and “it belongs to…children in the world. People of all ages love to dance together under its magic light.” Sunny dances and Grandma spins in her electric wheelchair. They play a game called “TO THE MOON AND BACK,” and Sunny “blasts off.” The book then switches to nonfiction content, providing information about the moon, astronauts, and more. It features historical events, like the first moon landing, and intriguing facts, including how recycled water is used in space. The work also touches on the moon’s significance in many cultures before returning to Sunny and Grandma. While the boy decides that he wants to visit Mars, he promises to keep Grandma in his heart wherever he travels. The book then presents more educational snippets for young readers. Cook offers an enticing learning experience in an approachable format. The work delivers entertaining tidbits for kids, such as how the Toy Story series’ Buzz Light­year was named after astronaut Buzz Aldrin. Nadeau’s detailed, hand-drawn illustrations add nice character. The artistic, realistic depictions show Sunny, Grandma, and various children enjoying the Children’s Moon. Illustrations also supplement the nonfiction parts, with drawings of the moon and portrayals of people mentioned, including Stephen Hawking.

Combining education and intergenerational fun, this work will appeal to readers of all ages.

Pub Date: Feb. 2, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-52-557804-5

Page Count: 52

Publisher: FriesenPress

Review Posted Online: May 21, 2021

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The feelings of community and togetherness are palpable.

SNOW GLOBE WISHES

When a snowstorm blows through town, it knocks out power and sends evening commuters scurrying for the safety and warmth of home.

But in the electricity-free night, one family turns the darkness into an opportunity to slow down and enjoy time together. This charming story follows the evening of an interracial family of four: a brown-skinned and dark-haired woman, little girl, and little boy, and a man presenting as white with light-colored skin and light hair. They have a candlelit picnic of Chinese takeout next to a blazing fireplace and decorated Christmas tree. The family enjoys the rest of the quiet snowy evening beneath a blanket fort in which they sleep together, cat and dog bundled in as well. The next morning, they and the rest of the community go out to play in the snow. The final spread in the book depicts the family’s cat and dog looking at the happy human tableau, now within the snow globe, which reads “Peace on Earth.” The muted colors, simple, childlike renderings, and happy characters make this book about a snowstorm feel warm and cozy—think hygge in picture-book form. Aside from the star-topped, decorated tree and the “Peace on Earth” message, often associated with Christmas, there are no religious symbols used in the book.

The feelings of community and togetherness are palpable. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-53411-031-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press

Review Posted Online: Aug. 18, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2019

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Charming characters, a clever plot and a quiet message tucked inside a humorous tale.

YOU ARE (NOT) SMALL

From the You Are (Not) Small series

Fuzzy, bearlike creatures of different sizes relate to one another in an amusing story that explores the relative nature of size.

A small purple creature meets a similarly shaped but much larger orange critter. The purple creature maintains that the orange creature is “big”; the orange one counters by calling the purple one “small.” This continues, devolving into a very funny shouting match, pages full of each type of creature hollering across the gutter. This is followed by a show-stopping double-page spread depicting two huge, blue legs and the single word “Boom!” in huge display type. Tiny, pink critters then float down by parachute, further complicating the size comparisons. Eventually, these brightly colored animals learn to see things in a different way. In the end, they decide they are all hungry and trudge off to eat together. The story is told effectively with just a few words per page, though younger readers might need help understanding the size and perspective concepts. Cartoon-style illustrations in ink and watercolor use simple shapes with heavy black outlines set off by lots of white space, with an oversized format and large typeface adding to the spare but polished design. While the story itself seems simple, the concepts are pertinent to several important social issues such as bullying and racism, as well as understanding point of view.

Charming characters, a clever plot and a quiet message tucked inside a humorous tale. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 5, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4778-4772-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Two Lions

Review Posted Online: June 30, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2014

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