|Image from MiniGrey.com|
Alfred A. Knopf, 2013
There’s a lot of mysterious stuff happening on Offley Street. Good thing Hermelin’s around to use his mouse-y detective skills. He solves the mystery of the Lost Glasses of Dr. Parker and the Dramatic Rescue of Baby McMumbo. But how will the neighbors react when they realize their celebrated sleuth is a rodent? This romp of a mystery is chockfull of humorous narration by Hermelin and delicious visuals clues hidden in the mixed media illustrations. Try leaving it lying around and let elementary school aged kids pour over the illustrations. Offley Street is populated by a whimsical set of neighbors and Hermelin is a curious, goodhearted protagonist, much like Eve Titus’s Anatole. Although the ending is satisfying, Grey leaves the reader clues that could very well led to more adventures for Hermelin and his new friend Emily.
|Image from SimonandSchuster.com|
Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2014
Look out! Here comes the Hug Machine! Ready to give everyone a hug – young or old, short or tall! He might look like a boy, but he’s actually a Hug Machine that runs on pizza! No matter what the Hug Machine is always open for business! This expressive read aloud is a fun book for a Valentine’s Day themed toddler storytime. Written from the boy’s point of view, the text is energetic and humorous. The watercolor illustrations feature exaggerated characters, especially the long-armed Hug Machine. Don’t miss the whimsical endpapers!
|Image from RandomHouse.com|
Candlewick Press, 2014
Fritz wakes up knowing that today he’ll feel different because today he’s five! Except he doesn’t feel different. He still can’t tie his shoelaces and none of his teeth are even the tiniest bit loose! Will he ever feel five? The easy to read font plus bright, cartoonish pen, ink, and watercolor illustrations make this a fun title for preschool storytime. Try using it for a birthday themed storytime along with A Letter for Amy by Ezra Jack Keats.
|Image from TundraBooks.com|
Tundra Books, 2014
They say an elephant never forgets…but Nancy might have forgotten something important. So she tries to remember things she knows – things that are the same and things that are different, things with wheels, and places to relax. She remembers them backwards and forwards, this way and that. What is it that Nancy can’t remember? The highlight of this delightful book is the loose, yet precise artwork created with graphite pencil and sculptures made with Japanese papers. Simple text and delicate illustrations pair perfectly to illustrate concepts (messy vs. clean, backwards vs. forwards). The short text and the happy ending make this a great book for storytime.