Wisely counsels looking to our past to find our future.


In a starlit room, an unnamed protagonist listens to her aunties tell stories.

The female elders tell tales of immigration, multilingualism, and change. The protagonist soaks the stories up, completely rapt. Every word her aunties say feels “steeped in love and lore.” The more she listens, the more she wants to tell her own story. But how will she know what her story will be? Soon, her imagination takes flight. Will her story be about sailing away with pirates who have forgotten their trousers? Or will her story be about teaching magical creatures their alphabets? She wonders if she will become an explorer. When her aunties hear that she is trying to tell her story, they encourage her to find her own voice. That is when the protagonist realizes that her story is more than just her present and future: It is also her past, including all the memories and adventures and histories she’s inherited from women like her aunties. By the end of the book, the narrator still isn’t sure what her story will be, but—with the help of her aunties—she is excited to find out. The book’s text is lyrical, whimsical, and inspiring, the vision of interweaving individual and collective stories both accessible and heartwarming. The illustrations of the brown-skinned protagonist and racially diverse aunties are gentle and playful. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Wisely counsels looking to our past to find our future. (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 26, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-593-20506-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Aug. 11, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2021

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A winning tale about finding new friends.


Bear finds a wonderful toy.

Bear clearly loves the toy bunny that he has found sitting up against a tree in the forest, but he wants to help it return to its home. With a wagon full of fliers and the bunny secure in Bear’s backpack, he festoons the trees with posters and checks out a bulletin board filled with lost and found objects (some of which will bring a chuckle to adult readers). Alas, he returns home still worried about bunny. The following day, they happily play together and ride Bear’s tricycle. Into the cozy little picture steps Moose, who immediately recognizes his bunny, named Floppy. Bear has a tear in his eye as he watches Moose and Floppy hug. But Moose, wearing a tie, is clearly grown and knows that it is time to share and that Bear will take very good care of his Floppy. Yoon’s story is sweet without being sentimental. She uses digitized artwork in saturated colors to create a lovely little world for her animals. They are outlined in strong black lines and stand out against the yellows, blues, greens and oranges of the background. She also uses space to great effect, allowing readers to feel the emotional tug of the story.

A winning tale about finding new friends. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: April 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-8027-3559-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Posted Online: Feb. 19, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2014

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The visual details invite interaction, making it a good choice for storytime or solo inspection.


It’s a quiet day, until….

“I have a bot!” An excited child’s happiness is short-lived, for the remote-controlled toy escapes its wireless tether and begins an ascent up the side of a skyscraper. The building’s doorman launches a race to recover the bot, and soon everyone wants to help. Attempts to retrieve the bot, which is rendered as a red rectangle with a propeller, arms, and a rudimentary face, go from the mundanity of a broom to the absurd—a bright orange beehive hairdo and a person-sized Venus’ flytrap are just some of the silly implements the building’s occupants use to try to rein in the bot. Each double-page spread reveals another level of the building—and further visual hijinks—as the bot makes its way to the top, where an unexpected hero waits (keep an eye out for falling bananas). The tall, narrow trim size echoes the shape of the skyscraper, providing a sense of height as the bot rises. Text is minimal; short declarations in tidy black dialogue bubbles with white courier-style typeface leave the primary-colored, blocky art to effectively carry the story. Facial expressions—both human and bot—are comically spot-on. The bot-owning child has light skin, and there are several people of color among those trying to rescue the bot. One person wears a kufi.

The visual details invite interaction, making it a good choice for storytime or solo inspection. (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: July 23, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-425-28881-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: March 31, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2019

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