Certainly cute and good animal practice for little ones, but there’s just something off about this one.

READ REVIEW

WHAT NOT TO GIVE YOUR MOM ON MOTHER'S DAY

An adorable, rosy-cheeked blond boy decked out in overalls has some advice for readers about Mother’s Day gifts.

It’s really more nonadvice, as he freely tells readers what she won’t appreciate. “Do NOT give her a bucket of big, fat worms… / unless she is a bird.” Left-hand pages show the boy inappropriately gifting his mother, while right-hand pages show the appropriate animals enjoying the gifts: “Tweet, tweet! Plump, juicy worms!” A beat-up shoe is a poor gift choice…unless your mom is a dog. Save the dead flies for spider moms, the rotting log for a salamander and the block of salt for the deer. Cross sticks, a mound of termites, a mud puddle and mosquitoes off the shopping list. And as for what the pint-sized tyke does recommend? Well, a hug and a kiss, of course. Brilliant hues and patterns fill Christy’s spreads, which highlight just the right details for younger readers. But strangely, the mother comes off as a bit of a layabout and interacts very little with her child. Her activities include a bubble bath, reading in a comfy chair, coffee on the porch and lying in the hammock—in that order, which is also a bit odd—and culminate in a shared dessert with her little boy.

Certainly cute and good animal practice for little ones, but there’s just something off about this one. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: April 2, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-4778-1647-9

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Amazon Children's Publishing

Review Posted Online: March 13, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2013

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Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture...

WHEN I PRAY FOR YOU

Turner adds another title to his picture-book series that highlights the miracles in the mundane (When God Made Light, 2018, etc.).

In the vein of children’s-bookshelf stalwart Oh, the Places You’ll Go, Turner’s rhyming text includes both prayers and life advice for a growing child, beginning with infancy and moving on to adolescence. At times the rhyme and meter are strained, muddling meaning and making the tempo feel occasionally awkward when read aloud. Overall, though, the book executes its mission, presenting Christian theological truths within the rhythmic inspirational text. For this third series installment Turner’s text is paired with a new illustrator, whose bright illustrations of wide-eyed children have great shelf appeal. While David Catrow’s previous illustrations in the series featured effervescent black protagonists, the child in Barnes’ illustrations appears white, though she occupies an otherwise diverse world. While illustrated as a prayer from a mother for her daughter, the text itself is gender neutral.

Though it will never usurp Dr. Seuss, it will still find a home where Christian families of faith seek inspirational picture books. (Picture book/religion. 3-6)

Pub Date: Feb. 19, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-52565058-4

Page Count: 48

Publisher: WaterBrook

Review Posted Online: Dec. 5, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

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A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends.

GOOD NIGHT, LITTLE BLUE TRUCK

Is it a stormy-night scare or a bedtime book? Both!

Little Blue Truck and his good friend Toad are heading home when a storm lets loose. Before long, their familiar, now very nervous barnyard friends (Goat, Hen, Goose, Cow, Duck, and Pig) squeeze into the garage. Blue explains that “clouds bump and tumble in the sky, / but here inside we’re warm and dry, / and all the thirsty plants below / will get a drink to help them grow!” The friends begin to relax. “Duck said, loud as he could quack it, / ‘THUNDER’S JUST A NOISY RACKET!’ ” In the quiet after the storm, the barnyard friends are sleepy, but the garage is not their home. “ ‘Beep!’ said Blue. ‘Just hop inside. / All aboard for the bedtime ride!’ ” Young readers will settle down for their own bedtimes as Blue and Toad drop each friend at home and bid them a good night before returning to the garage and their own beds. “Blue gave one small sleepy ‘Beep.’ / Then Little Blue Truck fell fast asleep.” Joseph’s rich nighttime-blue illustrations (done “in the style of [series co-creator] Jill McElmurry”) highlight the power of the storm and capture the still serenity that follows. Little Blue Truck has been chugging along since 2008, but there seems to be plenty of gas left in the tank.

A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 22, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-85213-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: June 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2019

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