THE SANDMAN

THE STORY OF SANDERSON MANSNOOZIE

From the Guardians of Childhood series , Vol. 2

At the behest of the Man in the Moon, shooting-star captain Sanderson Mansnoozie takes on a new responsibility—guarding Earth’s children from the evil Pitch and his Dream Pirates.

Back in the Golden Age, he was tasked with sending dreams down to everyone who made a wish upon his passing fiery vessel (because a granted wish “always begins with a dream,” as the narrator circularly notes). Now Sandy wakes after eons of sleep to sail our planet’s skies on a cloud of golden Dreamsand and assist in chasing away the nightmares plaguing slumbering children. Like the Guardians of Childhood origin tale it succeeds, The Man in the Moon (2011), the plotline and internal logic seem rudimentary next to Joyce’s extravagantly ornate illustrations. Here, amid dramatic curls and swirls of glowing sand, the smiling, newly minted Lord High Protector of Sleep and Dreams cuts a stubby but intrepid figure—topped by a wild golden mane and surrounded by attentive seashells and lissome, tattooed mermaids—as he does his nighttime work beneath deep fields of stars and a benevolently smiling moon. The art makes a bigger impression than the story, but the overall tone is appropriately dreamy, and as for that creeping nightmare: “you know it’s not real.” (Picture book. 5-9) 

 

Pub Date: Oct. 2, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-4424-3042-6

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Atheneum

Review Posted Online: Aug. 29, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2012

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

This story covers the few days preceding the much-anticipated Midnight Zombie Walk, when Stink and company will take to the...

STINK AND THE MIDNIGHT ZOMBIE WALK

From the Stink series

An all-zombie-all-the-time zombiefest, featuring a bunch of grade-school kids, including protagonist Stink and his happy comrades.

This story covers the few days preceding the much-anticipated Midnight Zombie Walk, when Stink and company will take to the streets in the time-honored stiff-armed, stiff-legged fashion. McDonald signals her intent on page one: “Stink and Webster were playing Attack of the Knitting Needle Zombies when Fred Zombie’s eye fell off and rolled across the floor.” The farce is as broad as the Atlantic, with enough spookiness just below the surface to provide the all-important shivers. Accompanied by Reynolds’ drawings—dozens of scene-setting gems with good, creepy living dead—McDonald shapes chapters around zombie motifs: making zombie costumes, eating zombie fare at school, reading zombie books each other to reach the one-million-minutes-of-reading challenge. When the zombie walk happens, it delivers solid zombie awfulness. McDonald’s feel-good tone is deeply encouraging for readers to get up and do this for themselves because it looks like so much darned fun, while the sub-message—that reading grows “strong hearts and minds,” as well as teeth and bones—is enough of a vital interest to the story line to be taken at face value.

Pub Date: March 13, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-7636-5692-8

Page Count: 160

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Dec. 14, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2012

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Teachers will certainly find themselves wishing for their own arsenal of supplies to help them with their grading, and...

THE LITTLE RED PEN

Obviously inspired by "The Little Red Hen," this goes beyond the foundation tale's basic moral about work ethic to explore problem solving, teamwork and doing one’s best.

Nighttime at school brings the Little Red Pen out of the drawer to correct papers, usually aided by other common school supplies. But not this time. Too afraid of being broken, worn out, dull, lost or, worst of all, put in the “Pit of No Return” (aka trash), they hide in the drawer despite the Little Red Pen’s insistence that the world will end if the papers do not get corrected. But even with her drive she cannot do it all herself—her efforts send her to the Pit. It takes the ingenuity and cooperation of every desk supply to accomplish her rescue and to get all the papers graded, thereby saving the world. The authors work in lots of clever wordplay that will appeal to adult readers, as will the spicy character of Chincheta, the Mexican pushpin. Stevens’ delightfully expressive desk supplies were created with paint, ink and plenty of real school supplies. Without a doubt, she has captured their true personalities: the buck-toothed stapler, bespectacled scissors and rather empty-headed eraser.

Teachers will certainly find themselves wishing for their own arsenal of supplies to help them with their grading, and students may take a second glance at that innocuous-looking red pen on the teacher’s desk. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: April 18, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-15-206432-7

Page Count: 56

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: April 6, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2011

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more