From the Yeti Files series , Vol. 2

Monster and dino lovers alike will enjoy the foolishness.

Yeti Blizz and his cryptid cronies are back for more adventure.

After finding his sasquatch cousin Brian, in Meet the Bigfeet (2014), Blizz and his friends are kicking back and playing games. However, their cryptid buddy Vanessa—Nessie—is feeling lonely, and she's thinking about leaving the loch. Blizz knows that might endanger her. Since Jack Saturday the unicorn isn't answering Blizz's calls, Blizz and friends head to Loch Ness on their bikes, and Nessie demonstrates her loneliness—all the denizens of the loch have companions but her. Elf Alex discovers she's a plesiosaur, and the friends decide to seek the help of Tobin Clover, a leprechaun. Tobin takes them back in time with the magic of the rainbow, but the friends are separated in a hasty escape from a T. Rex. Frank the arctic fox makes a dino friend, Nessie and Blizz meet more plesiosaurs, imp Gunthar and Alex run afoul of a triceratops...and Nessie decides she likes the present better. On their return, Tobin has a great surprise for Nessie, and the cryptids receive a call for help from the merfolk! Sherry's second yeti tale imparts a bit of dino info in its labeled black-and-white illustrations, which mix pages with a sentence or two of text with comic-style panels. The frenetic adventure’s as much fun as it is nonsensical. Be warned: read the first adventure before tackling this one, as there are no character introductions and no background info on cryptozoological society.

Monster and dino lovers alike will enjoy the foolishness. (Graphic/fantasy hybrid. 5-9)

Pub Date: Sept. 29, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-545-55619-4

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 11, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2015


Charming and thought-provoking proof that we all contain multitudes.

Oscar winner McConaughey offers intriguing life observations.

The series of pithy, wry comments, each starting with the phrase “Just because,” makes clear that each of us is a mass of contradictions: “Just because we’re friends, / doesn’t mean you can’t burn me. / Just because I’m stubborn, / doesn’t mean that you can’t turn me.” Witty, digitally rendered vignettes portray youngsters diverse in terms of race and ability (occasionally with pets looking on) dealing with everything from friendship drama to a nerve-wracking footrace. “Just because I’m dirty, / doesn’t mean I can’t get clean” is paired with an image of a youngster taking a bath while another character (possibly an older sibling) sits nearby, smiling. “Just because you’re nice, / doesn’t mean you can’t get mean” depicts the older one berating the younger one for tracking mud into the house. The artwork effectively brings to life the succinct, rhyming text and will help readers make sense of it. Perhaps, after studying the illustrations and gaining further insight into the comments, kids will reread and reflect upon them further. The final page unites the characters from earlier pages with a reassuring message for readers: “Just because the sun has set, / doesn’t mean it will not rise. / Because every day is a gift, / each one a new surprise. BELIEVE IT.” As a follow-up, readers should be encouraged to make their own suggestions to complete the titular phrase. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Charming and thought-provoking proof that we all contain multitudes. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 12, 2023

ISBN: 9780593622032

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: June 8, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2023


From the Questioneers series

A much-needed reminder that kindness will always win out.

Teachers influence children profoundly.

From earliest childhood, Lila Greer, the youngest of five in a single-dad household, has been a worrier. Then the family moves. Entering second grade feels overwhelming: Nothing’s familiar, and she has no friends. But Ms. Kern, Lila’s new teacher, invites Lila to erase the chalkboard at recess and to articulate her fears. It helps that someone listens. Soon, classmates get into the act, and lonely Lila makes friends, emerges from her shell, and learns that “what ifs” have positive sides. Lila grows up, still fretting sometimes, and then becomes a new teacher who worries upon meeting her own students. But then she remembers the teacher who helped her overcome her fears and doubts years earlier. What was that marvelous, ineffable quality Ms. Kern possessed? Then Lila remembers: It was kindness! Harnessing that memory, Lila now welcomes her own “smiling young faces.” This is a sweet story that emphasizes good cheer, helpfulness, and the importance of feeling welcome and heard, no matter who you are: terrific messages, expressed in bouncy verses that scan well. The illustrations are colorfully lively. Readers will appreciate occasional displays of humorous and quirky typesetting creativity and will admire Lila’s poufy topknot, which resembles a huge ball of yarn. Lila is light-skinned, Ms. Kern is tan-skinned, and other characters are diverse.

A much-needed reminder that kindness will always win out. (author’s note) (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 7, 2023

ISBN: 9781419769047

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Abrams

Review Posted Online: Nov. 4, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2023

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