A classic reboot that feels fresh.

READ REVIEW

THE LITTLE PINK ROSEBUD

A small rosebud living in her cozy underground space is urged by two new friends to sprout above the earth and blossom into a beautiful flower.

Feeling safe in her warm, dark home, Rosebud is disturbed by Rain’s knocking and then Sun’s cheery rustling at the window. These new friends insist that Rosebud allow them to enter, giving her the necessary ingredients for growth. With Rain and Sun’s encouragement—“Poke your head through!”—little pink Rosebud finds herself in a blooming spring garden. Shand retells a story originated by the early-20th-century children’s storyteller Bryant, ever so lightly desentimentalizing it while retaining the feel of the simple, repetitive dialogue of the original: “It’s the Rain and the Sun.…It’s the Sun and the Rain.…And we want to come in! We want to come in!” Opaque colors create a small, brown-toned room with door and curtained window and a surprised Rosebud sitting in a large green armchair. The smiling faces of a sun and a puffy white cloud represent Rosebud’s uninvited, equally anthropomorphized visitors. A careful review of the room reveals a clock on the wall with the four stages of germination, hinting at the story’s theme, which culminates aboveground in the glowing greens and pastels of springtime. A brief addendum relates the process. Though the scientific explanation is rudimentary, the fictional narrative employed will make it accessible to young listeners.

A classic reboot that feels fresh. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: March 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-4867-1555-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Flowerpot Press

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

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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

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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

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