Book of the Week: Super Hair-o And the Barber of Doom

Book of the Week, Children's

Super Hair-o And The Barber of Doom by John Rocco

Published: 2013 by Disney-Hyperion

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

Little Rocco is a super-powered, superhero.

He has many super, awesome super powers. He can whoosh like the speed of light on his tire swing. He can catch slippery green frogs without the help of a net. And he can soar higher than any of his friends on his red bike.

Where do his superpowers come from though? Why, isn’t it obvious? His hair!

Rocco’s hair is this crazy mass of curls! And it is awesome.

But Rocco isn’t the only superhero. His friends are superheroes too, all who possess great powers.

And where do they get their powers from? You guessed it: their hair!

Yes, their hair is as zany as Rocco’s is.

Superheroes can get themselves out of any sticky situation.

That is, when they are captured by their dads.

Captured and dragged away to the villain’s lair, a.k.a. The Barber shop!

It’s at this point in the book where I like the “dun, dun, dun!” music would sound off.

I love how, at this point, the colors of the illustrations shift from full color to black and white as little Rocco is about to step foot into the lair.

I also love how the guy sitting in the barber’s chair has an old school handlebar mustache.

Even though Rocco protested, and struggled the barber’s powers overpowered Rocco’s superhero powers.

By the end, both Rocco’s hair and super-charged superpowers were virtually nonexistent.

By the time Rocco manages to escape the evil clutches of his capture, he’s so drained he can’t even make it back to his hideout.

Rocco fears that his superpowers have disappeared. If they have, how can he possibly be a superhero? And worse, what will his friends think?!?

I love how Rocco is an emotional character. His facial expressions give him away on every page.

Rocco does everything in his human powers to get his powers and his hair back. He uses plant, mops, and even his trusty sidekick Sam to help. But all were not helpful.

When he see his friends, he finds out that their superpowered hair has been stripped and cut away.

Even though they don’t like this, I will say this: they all look super cute with new, shorter hair.

The superheroes are obvious down in the dumps about their lost powers. That is, until a little, crazy-haired little girl is in need of superhero help.

Power surged. And the heroes spang into action, not worrying about their hair, or lack of.

The little girl’s doll was stranded on the monkey bars.

But the superheroes were there to save her!

Rocco and his friends are TRUE superheroes – people who are brave in the face of danger, and people who care about other even if they don’t know them.

I really loved this book! It was so much fun!

The illustrations are AWESOME! They really captured the spirit of the book and of little Rocco.

The writing is smart, and super-charged!

Okay, I’ll admit, I’m a bit biased. I love John Rocco’s writing and illustrations! I think he’s genius!

But even if I wasn’t biased, Super Hair-o and the Barber of Doom is a book that boys and girls, both young and old will love!

 

Book of the Week: Doug Unplugged

Book of the Week, Children's

Doug Unplugged by Dan Yaccarino

Published: 2013 by Knopf Books for Young Readers

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

I like robots. And Doug is a robot!

Doug’s parents names are Rob Bot and Betty Bot. They are perfectly fitting for the blue and pink robot.

Just like most parents they want their little robot to be the smartest robot on he block. That’s why he’s plugged in and filled with knowledge and information.

Today’s particular lesson was about the city, and life within the city. Doug learned about things like: manholes, fire engines, trash cans, taxis, fire hydrants, subways, and even pigeons.

Doug looks quite content to be plugged in.

That is, until a pigeon shows up at Doug’s window – cooing and calling to him from the his own personal perch.

Doug has a real sense of curiosity. I love this aspect of him, and feel that author really captures a child’s natural sense of curiosity.

Doug wonders if he could learn in different ways. If he were to venture out into the wild city in which he lives would he learn more by experience?

Doug unplugged! And ventured into the city to explore and learn.

I love how this book shows that life and lessons are always surrounding us.

I love how Doug zips out the window, startling a flock of pigeons.

His first lesson was that if you fly into a flock, they get spooked and scatter.

The city is composed of many, many people. Different people, with different ideas and beliefs.

Doug discovers that the crowds make it difficult to see where you are going.

Flying isn’t Doug’s only mode of transportation – taking the subway is another. And he rides the subway like a seasoned pro.

Doug can fly higher than any pigeon he meets. So high, that he can see all of the city from where he was.

Some of the things Doug learned, unplugged: wet cement is squishy, sirens wail way too loudly, garbage is a smelly business, all sorts of things grow out of the cracks in the sidewalk, taxis will only stop if they are flagged down, and most of all part fountains make a perfect pool.

Doug’s downloaded lessons teach him a lot, but the one thing the lessons have never taught him is how to play.

But a little blue boy in the park teaches him all sorts of games like hide and seek, tag, sliding and swinging.

Doug also learns through his new little blue friend that friends help each other in time of need.

When the little blue boy realizes that he can’t find his parents, Doug flies his little friend high above the trees to help find his parents.

When Doug sees his friend hug his parents, he thinks about his own, and wants to hurry back to tell him all about his day in the city.

Doug’s best lesson of that day: “if you want to show your parents you love them, you should give them a great big hug. ”

I love how colorful this book is.

The illustrations are crisp, sharp, and really bring Doug to life.

The writing is strong and smart. It really is the reason why readers will flock to this book.

I love how this book is a book for everyone – it’s full of laugh out loud moments and moments of wonder and tenderness.

 

Book of the Week: The Great Lollipop Caper

Book of the Week, Children's

The Great Lollipop Caper by Dan Krall

Published: 2013 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

I love how the title makes readers think this book is about something completely different from what it’s about.

Let me just say this: the main characters are a lollipop and a caper! So unique, and it really makes the book stand out from the get go!

The end pages really capture the personalities of both characters. The lollipop is jolly and inviting. While the caper is quite opposite: he’s unfriendly and a bit ticked off (but maybe he’s ticked off because he’s stuck in a sealed jar).

The caper isn’t just an average caper, he’s a FANCY capers. Okay, so he’s pickled! He’s still fancy.

Children do NOT like capers. It’s a known fact.

Children DO like lollipops though.

The book makes readers think about why Mr. Caper is so unliked and why Lollipop is, well, so loved.

The caper has dreams you know! He dreams of a world full of peace, a world full of people who love him and dislike lollipops.

But Mr. Caper isn’t disliked by all. Many, many people, who just happen to be adults, love Mr. Caper.

I love how this book shows that everyone is unique, and have unique tastes.

It isn’t enough to just be loved by adults!

Mr. Caper has a plan, one that is sure to make all of his dreams come true.

Capers can easily disguise themselves. A hat and black trench coat easily transforms this caper into a pea, a suspicious looking pea, but still a pea.

Mr. Caper’s plan is to infiltrate the lollipop factory.

I love how on the guards box there’s a “NO CAPER” sign posted. Just above that sign, is a sign illustrating that capers, are in fact, stinky creatures.

The security guard isn’t a great security guard. He cannot see though Mr. Caper’s very clever disguise.

The lollipop factory is full of lollipop batter … obviously.

The second part of Mr. Caper’s plan is to make all the new lollipops taste like capers.

It’s a genius plan, really it is!

This book shows how lollipops are made one place and then transported to places all over the world. Places like China, France, Egypt, and even Florida! Lollipops are universal.

Mr. Caper succeeded in transforming the lollipops, but did he succeed in transforming the children’s hearts? Do they love him just as much as the red Lollipop?

I love how this book is full of twists, turns, and mystery!

The kids really do seem to like the new caper flavored lollipops. Even if it turns them green and gives them crazy eyes.

Seeing Mr. Caper smile is great! Readers will see that he isn’t the bad guy, it’s just sad because he’s alone and unloved.

As soon as the kids taste the new flavored lollipops, they become as bitter and as sour as Mr. Caper was before his plan succeeded.

Even though Mr. Caper loves being loved by the children, he doesn’t like that he’s upset all the adults. One even calls him a “bad caper!”

Did Mr. Caper’s plan really succeed?

I love how this book shows readers (of all ages) that sometimes what you want, isn’t in fact, what you really want or need even.

Lollipop, as always is delightfully happy!

Mr. Caper thinks that everyone hates him. But that isn’t true. Lollipop likes him, and is his friend.

The Great Lollipop Caper really shows the power of friendship, and that if you have one true friend you have all you need!

Best friends can get you through anything. Even if your best friend is a lollipop.

Lollipop is really helpful. He knows exactly how to make everything better: he lets all the kids take a lick, turning them back into the sweet children they were BEFORE the caper flavored lollipops corrupted them.

Even though the kids were back to their normal, Lollipop loving selves, and the adults were no longer upset at the fancy caper, Mr. Caper still isn’t happy. Why? Because there’s nothing left to his one true friend, Lollipop.

Lollipop is VERY wise. In hopes to cheer up Mr. Caper, Lollipop says: “Sure, those kids love me now, but when they grow up, guess who they’re going to be crazy about?” And that’s the truth!

The Great Lollipop Caper is full of exceptional writing. Writing that isn’t only inviting, but it’s also whimsical.

Children and adults alike will surely love this book.

The Great Lollipop Caper will have readers laughing from the front to the back cover.

The illustrations! They are fantastic! So vibrant, so strong, and really drives the story along.

Both the illustrations and the writing evoke emotions in readers.

Author Dan Krall is a master of his craft, readers will easily recognize this.

This is a really fun book. And I think anyone who picks this book up will feel the same way.

 

 

 

Book of the Week: Betsy Red Hoodie

Book of the Week, Children's

Betsy Red Hoodie by Gail Carson Levine Illustrated by Scott Nash

Published: 2010 by HarperCollins

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

The (front) endpapers are HYSTERICAL. They portray the flock of sheep dressed in hats, sporting guitars, and chatting among one another. I particularly love the little one who announces that he wants to be a wolf one day.

The sheep are convinced that one of their shepherds is a wolf in disguise.

Betsy is so excited to be “old enough” to go to Grandma’s house all by herself. This is a life changing moment.

But she worries what will happen to the sheep? She is a shepherd and her flock needs tending.

Zimmo, another shepherd, who looks suspiciously like a wolf – that is if wolves dressed in striped yellow pants, with a grey vest, and a yellow scarf.

He explains that Grandmas don’t like wolves. Especially since one was eaten by a wolf.

But Zimmo wouldn’t do such things.

On the way to Grandma’s house, Betsy, the flock of sheep, and Zimmo sing a doo wop song that consists of: “Waa paa Wooo! Baaa! Maahaa has! Do woppa woo!” Catchy isn’t it?

“Cows say mood. Is he a cow?”

Betsy fully believes that Zimmo is a good wolf, one who’s never hurt a human or a sheep. But he is eyeing those cupcakes!

Betsy and the sheep like to pick flowers.

Before arriving at Grandma’s house, Betsy is stopped by a lady hunter who warns her of the dangers of hanging out with a wolf.

Everyone but Betsy believes that he wolf is going to eat everyone and everything. I really love how this fact alone portrays the hope that lives within children, and that should live within adults.

Even the sheep start to turn on Zimmo. Especially when they see him licking his chops. They urge him to eat grass instead.

These are some chatty sheep!

“What do grandmas look like? They have big eyes, the better to see you with. THey have long arms, the better to hung you with. They are long in the tooth, the better to chew with.”

“What do wolves look like? They have big eyes, the better to see you with. They have long arms, the better to hug you with. They have long teeth. They look a lot like grandmas!”

Zimmo runs ahead of Betsy and the sheep. Making even the reader suspicious of his motives.

Betsy is having a hard time gaining control over her flock. One is sitting up in a tree, tweeting, pretending to be a bird. They others won’t move due to rain pouring down on them.

When they finally …. finally reach Grandma’s house Betsy’s suspicions are confirmed – she sees Zimmo and another wolf sneaking around, lurking really, around the house, trying to find a way in.

Scared and determined, Betsy rushes down the hill, and into Grandma’s house only to find a party – for her – in full swing.

Oh, that other wolf? It was Zimmo’s grandma!

I love how this book was suspense filled.

And how even though it’s a retelling of a favorite story, it’s unique and full of new surprises.

Betsy’s birthday party is great! When blowing out the candles on her pink iced cake she wishes for more good days just like the one she just had. Though the sheep have several theories on what her birthday wish really is: more sheep? for her yummy looking pink cake to turn into green grass? To be a sheep one day?

There are many morals to this story: “wolves are good for grandmas. Some wolves are grandmas.  Some grandmas are sheep? And some books never end.”

But I believe the best moral of this story is: not to be so judgmental and to trust your instincts.

I loved Betsy as a character! She’s honest, brave, and wears a spunky red hoodie!

The writing is spectacular! It’s not only strong, it’s fun!

Young readers and old readers alike will really enjoy discovering a new twist on an old tale.

The illustrations are great! They’re vibrant and are the perfect compliment to the text.

 

Book of the Week: The French Fry King

Book of the Week, Children's

The French Fry King by Roge

Published: 2012 by Tundra Books

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

The French Fry King himself is a dog. But not just any old dog, he happens to be a weenie dog!  Or as the book refers to him as: “a sausage dog”.

His name is Roger. I just love human names for pets.

Roger is a thinker.

He thinks about things like: “if I had a human girlfriend, would we hold hands or paws? If humans were dogs, would they build dog house skyscrapers?” I often wonder if dogs actually think this way.

All the people around Roger seem so rushed and busy, so much so that they barely notice him. On young boy is playing with a rubics cube. An older gentleman is listening to some music on his iPod. An old lady, with a bag full of groceries, is busy chatting on her cell phone.

I really love how all the humans are portrayed as doing really typical, really mundane activities.

Roger wasn’t like other dogs. He was an individual! Unlike other dogs, he doesn’t like chasing the mail men, he didn’t like barking at cars. Instead, he wishes he could be an astronaut.

I love how this book shows young readers to embrace themselves for who they are.

There’s a little boy, running through the street, dressed as Batman. I love it!

The attention to detail is impeccable. For example, author/illustrator portrays a random woman, a passerby, with a magazine tucked neatly under her arm. But it isn’t just any magazine, it’s Elle. And from the looks of her, it’s not surprising that she reads such a magazine.

I like that Roger is a very cultured and informed dog. He likes to read the newspaper.

It’s while he’s reading that he discovers his life’s calling: to become the French Fry King!

He lives in a little silver trailer, where he spends his night peeling potatoes in trying to make all his french fry dreams come true.

His silver trailer home doubles as a food stand.

Sure enough, his french fries are a hit! And why shouldn’t the be? It’s pretty impressive that a dog made them!

Soon the little sausage dog is, not only rich, but also famous!

He travels all over the world selling his fries.

I love how Roger has an adventurous spirit!

I also love how author/illustrator illustrates all the native people of all the countries Roger visits.

With that, how each native eats his/her fry dependent on where they live. For example, in Kenya, the people dipped their fries in chocolate. In Vietnam, they dipped them in soy sauce. In Cuba, they were dipped in spicy salsa. And India they were served in curry.

There are about one hundred ways to eat a french fry. Preferably, I like mine with ketchup!

Roger soon finds out, even though his rich, famous, and loved he still isn’t happy. He still feels as if something is missing from his life.

He abandons his strand and stumbles upon Charlotte the Corn Cob Queen.

It suddenly dawns on Roger what exactly is missing in his life: a friend, a love! Someone to who likes him for who he is, not the French fries he makes.

The two fall in love, and besides living happily ever after, they combine their efforts to create Roger and Charlotte’s Royal Shepherd’s Pie stand.

“Life is beautiful!”

I love how this book shows that no one can really predict the future, that sometimes we have to accept life as it comes.

Roge’s writing is strong. It’s smart, and doesn’t underestimate the books young readers.

The illustrations are simple, refined, and really drive the story forward.

This was a really fun book!

Young children, I think, will love this book. I think they will truly identify with Roger, and his dreams.

 

Book of the Week: The Dark

Book of the Week, Children's

The Dark by Lemony Snicket Illustrated by Jon Klassen

Published: 2012 by Little, Brown Books for Young Children

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

It’s a Lemony Snicket book — enough said.

I love how this book focuses on something that a lot of children are fearful of: the dark.

With that, I love how this book shows young readers that the dark isn’t anything to be afraid of.

The little boy (who readers later find out is named Laszlo), on the first page is shown with a flashlight, alone in the dark, and shining his light on the title page. Very clever!

I love how this book portrays the dark, not only a character, but an actual entity.

The dark lives with Laszlo.

They live in a house that is big. It’s roof often creaks. And there are many, many stairs to climb.

It takes the dark a while to reach Laszlo and his room late at night.

The dark is a bit of a trickster – sometimes it hides deep within the closet. Other times it shields itself behind the shower curtain. But mostly, the dark was in the basement.

As the story progresses, the dark creeps more and more onto the pages.

This book, without relying on time, shows the different between night and day. Day is often bright, while night is not.

The dark speaks. Reading this book I imagined that his tone of voice was deep and booming.

But in reality, the dark sounded as creaky as the old roof, as smooth and cool as the window, and even though the dark whispered in little Laszlo’s ear, it sounded far off.

Laszlo believes if he visits the dark in his room, maybe the dark wouldn’t visit him in his.

When the dark does visit Laszlo in his room he visits because he wants something. The dark wants to show Laszlo something.

I love how Laszlo sleeps with his flashlight instead of a teddy bear or some other stuffed animal.

Laszlo searches all over for the dark. But it’s not until he reaches the top of the basement stairs that he finds him.

I’ll admit: when reading this part – when the dark was loring Laszlo into the basement late at night – I was a bit scared.

Laszlo is brave. He shows readers that facing fears is a natural part of life and part of growing up.

In the basement, the dark asks Laszlo to step in, come closer. But to what?

To a small dresser situated in the middle of the dark room.

I love how this book offers an explanation of why people are afraid of the dark, and why the dark is the way it is. What are some explanations: “[…]The dark is always close by.” “Without a creaky roof the rain would fall on your bed, and without a smooth, cold window, you could never see outside.” But most of all, without the dark “you would never know if you needed a lightbulb.”

The dark asks Laszlo to open the bottom draw.

What’s in the bottom draw? It’s a mystery for all readers.

Inside the bottom drawer are lightbulbs. Lightbulbs fit for a nightlight.

Thanks to the dark Laszlo isn’t afraid anymore. In fact, the next day he visits the dark in the basement.

This is such a great book for everyone and anyone. Why? Because we all know what it’s like to be fearful of something.

Laszlo is a great character. He’s smart and easy for young readers to relate to.

The dark too is a great character. I love how he’s portrayed as being something foreboding. Even though, as it turns out the dark is a big ol’ softy!

This was a book that I was looking forward to for a while, has high expectations of. And it filled all those expectations!

 

 

Book of the Week: Flora and the Flamingo

Book of the Week, Children's

Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle

Published: 2013 by Chronicle Books

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

There’s so much pink! I love it!

I admit, I haven’t heard much of this book, until I saw someone reading it across the room. I got a glimpse of the illustrations, and just knew that this was a book I wanted to feature here on the blog.

“Friendship is a beautiful dance.”

Before reading this, I never realized how graceful flamingos could be. Before I just thought they were a bunch of pretty, yet often loud, birds.

Flora and the Flamingo is a wordless book, one that relies on the illustrations to tell the story.

I love how this book shows that friendships can be forged anywhere and with anyone.

Little Flora imitates the graceful flamingo with poise and precision. When the flamingo stands proudly on one leg, so does Flora.

Flora wears flippers and a yellow bathing cap. Quite frankly, she’s adorable!

This book features pull down flaps, where readers can uncover “hidden” illustrations.

The flamingo flaps, Flora flaps. The flamingo doesn’t appear to be amused with Flora’s antics.

Flora becomes very sad when she realizes, although she can do most everything the flamingo can do, she can’t do everything.

Personally, I don’t like to see Flora sad. The flamingo doesn’t either.

To make her happy, the flamingo invites little Flora to dance.

Together the graceful pair sway and shimmy across the page.

Through the intricate dance the two becomes friends.

When the dance is done, the two leap into a giant pool of water, splashing and laughing.

Friends will always keep you laughing.

I really appreciated the use of white space throughout the book.

The illustrations are simple, yet the speak volumes!

I love how each page has the illustration of a cherry blossom.

Flora and the Flamingo is an elegant book. It’s sophisticated, it’s whimsical, but above all things, it’s a books that children will love to read.

Speaking of the illustrations, they are created with precision. They are simply beautiful.

I love how this book doesn’t underestimate children and their reading abilities.

I love how this book really sparks one’s imagination.

It’s the kind of book that I personally want to own, and keep in my own personal library.

Both children and adults who read Flora and the Flamingo will love and cherish this book.

 

Book of the Week: Open This Little Book

Book of the Week, Children's

Open This Little Book by Jesse Klausmeier Illustrated by Suzy Lee

openthislittlebook

 

Published: 2013 by Chronicle Books

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

Before this book was even published, I read an article about it. Just from that article I knew I wanted to read this book. I knew I was going to love it.

The cover of this book is simply adorable. I would love to get lost in all those book.

Speaking of the cover, I love how the white rabbit has a pocket watch. I, personally, love the Alice in Wonderland reference.

The frog is wearing a top hat. Very classy!

Inside this big book are several tiny books.

All the tiny books are various shades of the rainbow, and all tell an important part of a the story.

The first book is a red book with black dots, kind of like a little ladybug.

What a coincidence?! The main character in this little red book is a ladybug, and yes she’s sipping tea from a red tea cup.

The second book is a green book with a darker green, circular print.

And what do you know! The top hat wearing frog is in this little book – hopping from one lily pad to the next with a book in hand.

The third little book is the orange book. Of course it’s orange with a funky, almost abstract looking carrot print scattered about the cover. I wonder what creature will fill the page of this book?

It’s a white rabbit, and he appears to be running very late for a very important date. He is holding a book, maybe he and his friends are off to a book club?!?

The fourth book in the little yellow book, with a honeycomb pattern plastered on it.

But the creature in this yellow book is NOT a bee! It’s a bear. Afterall bears do like honey.

Bear has a yellow umbrella.

The fifth book is the little blue book, and it looks like there’s a castle printed on it.

And it’s in this fifth, blue book, where all the action takes place. The ladybug, the frog, the rabbit, and the bear meet up with a giant!

The giant is SO big he doesn’t even fit in the blue book.

But the giant isn’t a mean giant, he’s a reading giant. And one that likes to read about a ladybug, a frog, a rabbit, and a bear.

After all the friends are done reading they close all of their colored books.

The little books featured within the large book get smaller and smaller.

I love how the book has a very important message at the end of it: at the close of one book, make sure to open another.

The writing is simple (but in a good way), playful, and fun-filled.

The illustrations are full of life and color!

I particularly LOVE the very last illustration: a little library nestled inside of a giant old tree. Animals, people, and giants alike.

This is a really fun, charming book.

This is author Jesse Klausmeier’s debut, and it’s a really fun and charming one. Readers will definitely be keeping an eye out for her future works. I know I will.

 

Book of the Week: Wilfred

Book of the Week, Children's

Wilfred by Ryan Higgins

wilfred

 

Published: 2013 by Dial

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

I was intrigued by this book at first sight. I didn’t know who, or rather, what Wilfred was! And I couldn’t wait to find out.

The end covers are hysterically funny. I especially love the portrait of Wilfred screaming and running away from a tiny white bunny rabbit.

Wilfred lives in a far away place. From the start I really liked that aspect because it leaves readers to believe that this story can happen anywhere, even right in our very own backyard.

Readers find out quickly that Wilfred is a giant.

This giant wasn’t only large he was also hairy.

The ironic thing about that is that he lived in a town where only bald people lived.

Men, women, and children … all completely hairless.  Wilfred stuck out among them for very obvious reasons.

Most of the bald townspeople who glimpsed Wilfred, ran, scared of the friendly giant. All except for one brave, bald boy.

Wilfred is a good listener. And an even better friend.

Wilfred does everything and anything the boy asks him to do. He sits, stands on one foot, plays golf in a fancy golf get-up, played ukulele, did the bald boys homework (even though 3 + 4 does not equal FISH), and Wilfred reenacted the Battle of Waterloo – rocking horse and everything!

The two have so much fun that they decide to play together every single day.

I love how this book shows that the little boy can see beyond Wilfred’s exterior, and inside to the kind of friend he really is.

The bald townspeople have a sinister idea.  Since they’re bald and he has enough hair to go around, they decide that it’s in their best interest to give him a haircut.

They use his hair to make wigs for themselves.

They don’t think how Wilfred will feel once all his hair is gone.

How does Wilfred feel? Cold. So cold that he can’t bear to leave his cave, even though he really wants to play with his friend.

I love the picture posted on the wall of Wilfred’s cave – it’s of him and his friend with a heart between them.

This book really shows the power of friendship, and how if you only have one friend in the world – one true friend – that you’re rich!

Worried and upset since Wilfred didn’t show up, the little bald boy decides to go out look for him. What he finds, isn’t Wilfred, but a bunch of townspeople wearing Wilfred’s fur as hair.

The little boy decides to make Wilfred a warm pair of mittens. But he gets lost in the blizzard trying to find his new friend.

When the little boy doesn’t come back to the bald village, the townspeople decide to go look for him. What they find is the boy, safe and warm from the treacherous weather, in Wilfred’s arms.

Upon seeing this sight, the townspeople decide to give Wilfred’s hair back.

They sew it together and make a jumpsuit for their new friend and hero Wilfred.

And that’s how Wilfred, the hairy giant, ended up with a zipper. And a best friend.

I loved how sweet and charming this book was.

Children will love this book! Adults will too.

This book shows that friends come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. And that we shouldn’t judge someone by what someone looks like on the outside. We should judge someone by what’s on the inside.

Wilfred loves to smile. Reading the book will make readers smile too.

The illustrations are spectacular! They really bring make the already great writing, pop!

There’s so much to love about this book! So much!

Book of the Week: Ol’ Mama Squirrel

Book of the Week, Children's

Ol’ Mama Squirrel by David Ezra Stein

mamasquirrelPublished: 2013 by Nancy Paulsen Books

Reasons why I liked this book, and chose it as Book of the Week:

This book definitely lives up to all the buzz I’ve heard about it!

I like squirrels.

I really loved how author David Ezra Stein really managed to capture the fierce-ness of the mama squirrel.

Squirrels really do bark – or in this case CHOOK! CHOOK! CHOOK! (I’ve actually heard a squirrel bark.)

A barking or chooking squirrel is NOT a happy squirrel as readers will see through this book.

Mama squirrel is brave, she’s not afraid to go head to head with creatures that five times bigger than she is.

When cats get to close, she warns them.

When dogs start sniffing around her treat, she chooks them away. Leaving the dog to believe that that mama squirrel is NUTS! (get it?! ha ha )

She even chooks and waves her tiny fist at passing airplanes and red kits that get tangled within her tree’s limbs.

I love how reader’s really do get the sense that Mama Squirrel is a very loving character and squirrel.

I love Mama Squirrel’s catch phrase:  “And THAT takes care of that!”

But one day a giant grizzly bear appears, and he doesn’t seem to be afraid of Mama’s chooking.

I love how it appears that there’s a giant brown grizzly bear roaming the city-scape. He seemed so out of place, which made the whole situation funny.

Speaking of the grizzly, I particularly love the illustrations of the giant bear scaling the tree – he’s only mere inches off the ground.

Mama tries everything from clattering in the branches, chooking at the top of her squirrel lungs, and even pelting him with stored nuts.

The grizzly is one determined bear! You got to give him credit for that.

Mama Squirrel has no choice but to whip out the big guns. She gathers her squirrel babies, and seeks the help of all the mama squirrels in the area.

Mama squirrels are everywhere: by fire escapes, under train tracks, deep within the treetops, and at every corner of the park.

Together all the mama’s join forces and chook! chook! chook! that big mean bear out of there territory!

Mama Squirrel is a real hero. Animals and people alike will easily recognize that.

I love how this book shows that it’s okay to ask for help when you need it.

This book also shows the importance of working as a team.

The writing …. smart, sassy, with a hint of whimsy! Loved every minute of it.

This is a book for animal lovers of all ages.

The illustrations really capture the spirit of the story and the writing.

Author/Illustrator David Ezra Stein pays close attention to the finest details. For instance the character’s expressions are perfect. I really appreciated that aspect.

I love how all the animals are portrayed in a very humanistic aspect – making them easy to relate to and sympathize with.

This book will make kids laugh, a lot!