Like Jerome’s, its heart is in the right place.

READ REVIEW

HOW TO GROW HAPPINESS

From the Jerome the Gnome series , Vol. 1

With the help of his forest friends, gnome Jerome learns a valuable lesson about happiness—or maybe gardening.

A bright yellow bird named Warble flies through the Garden of Wonder, landing in Jerome’s open window. Warble offers Jerome a “tiny black seed” that she calls “the seed of happiness.” Jerome offers a piece of bright red yarn—the “perfect” thing for Warble’s nest!—in exchange. When the seed doesn’t do anything, however, Jerome worries that it may be broken. Friends Beamer the robot and Nutilda the squirrel suggest sunlight, and Sir Surly the turtle prompts Jerome to toss the seed into the pond for water. It takes Sherwin Wigglesworth, a jaunty worm with a monocle, to show Jerome how to plant his seed. Jerome and friends are impatient for the seed to grow, until Glinda, the butterfly fairy (who just happens to be fluttering by), points out the missing ingredient: love. “The best things always grow from love.” Jerome nurtures his seed with water, food, love, and some of his favorite things placed all around. It grows into a giant green watermelon that everyone can share. Though it doesn’t really hang together logically, DiPucchio’s story captures an innocence in tune with the very young. Kaufenberg’s illustrations are appropriately bright and cute, depicting Jerome as a white garden gnome with a pointy red cap.

Like Jerome’s, its heart is in the right place. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: May 8, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-63565-140-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Rodale Kids

Review Posted Online: March 27, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

It’s gratifying to see Lola’s love of books leading her to new experiences.

LOLA PLANTS A GARDEN

From the Lola & Leo series

Hoping to have a garden like the one in her poetry book, Lola plants seeds, waits and weeds, and finally celebrates with friends.

The author and illustrator of Lola Loves Stories (2010) and its companion titles take their appealing character outside. Inspired by her favorite poem, the nursery rhyme “Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary” (repeated on the front endpapers), Lola chooses her favorite flowers from library books. Helped by her parents, she grows a grandly diverse flower garden, just right for a celebration with peas and strawberries from the family plot. Beardshaw’s acrylic illustrations show her garden in all its stages. They also show the copper-toned preschooler reading on her mother’s lap, making a flower book, a beaded string with bells and shells, a little Mary Mary doll and cupcakes for the celebration. Her bunchy ponytails are redone, and her flower shirt is perfect for the party. Not only has she provided the setting; she makes up a story for her friends. The simple sentences of the text and charming pictures make this a good choice for reading aloud or early reading alone. On the rear endpapers, the nursery rhyme has been adapted to celebrate “Lola, Lola, Extraordinary.”

It’s gratifying to see Lola’s love of books leading her to new experiences. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Aug. 5, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-58089-694-8

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: June 10, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2014

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A quiet, warm look at the bond between grandfather and grandson.

MAX AND THE TAG-ALONG MOON

After a visit, an African-American grandfather and grandson say farewell under a big yellow moon. Granpa tells Max it is the same moon he will see when he gets home.

This gently told story uses Max’s fascination with the moon’s ability to “tag along” where his family’s car goes as a metaphor for his grandfather’s constant love. Separating the two relatives is “a swervy-curvy road” that travels up and down hills, over a bridge, “past a field of sleeping cows,” around a small town and through a tunnel. No matter where Max travels, the moon is always there, waiting around a curve or peeking through the trees. But then “[d]ark clouds tumbled across the night sky.” No stars, no nightingales and no moon are to be found. Max frets: “Granpa said it would always shine for me.” Disappointed, Max climbs into bed, missing both the moon and his granpa. In a dramatic double-page spread, readers see Max’s excitement as “[s]lowly, very slowly, Max’s bedroom began to fill with a soft yellow glow.” Cooper uses his signature style to illustrate both the landscape—sometimes viewed from the car windows or reflected in the vehicle’s mirror—and the expressive faces of his characters. Coupled with the story’s lyrical text, this is a lovely mood piece.

A quiet, warm look at the bond between grandfather and grandson. (Picture book. 4-6)

Pub Date: June 13, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-399-23342-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: March 13, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2013

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more