Showing posts from June, 2017

Picturebooks Roundup (Part 2)

Picturebook Favorites [Part II]  ALA (2017)
La La La  Kate DiCamillo (Author) and Jaime Kim (Illustrator)
A beautiful story of hope and personal exploration told through a simple, repeated refrain, and accompanied by incredible illustrations rendered in a combination of black and white and vibrant color. You won't want this wonderful little book to end!
(10/03/2017 - Candlewick Press)

Love, Triangle  Marcie Colleen (Author) and Bob Shea (Illustrator)
Told through a delightful combination of word play and geometric imagery, Love, Triangle is a hilarious story of friendship and the complications that ensue when a new arrival comes into the picture. As circle and square compete for triangle's attention, Shea's illustrations perfectly capture the and exaggerate their shenanigans.
(10/03/2017 - Balzer + Bray)

Read the Book, Lemmings!  Ame Dyckman (Author) and Zachariah OHora (Illustrator)
Why won't the lemmings read the book‽ Don't they know lemmings don't jump off of cliffs‽ T…

Picturebooks Roundup (Part 1)

Picturebook Favorites [Part I] ALA (2017)
Claymates  Dev Petty (Author) and Lauren Eldridge (Illustrator)
Metafiction at it's finest, this hilarious picturebook features two clay creations playing around with an artist's tools, turning themselves into increasingly bizarre and silly shapes. What a bunch of trouble-makers! What will the artist think when she gets back to her studio?!
(Little, Brown - 06/20/2017)
Little Penguin and the Lollipop Tadgh Bentley
When Little Penguin eats his friend's lollipop, he feels bad and tries to make things better, but he just can't seem to figure out what to do (even a hug doesn't work!) Funny faces and silly escapades abound as Little Penguin tries everything he can think of to make up for his bad behavior. He's certainly learned his lesson: Never take a lollipop from a seagull!
(Balzer + Bray - 10/03/2017)
That is My Dream Langston Hughes (Author) and Daniel Miyares (Illustrator)
Langston Hughes' incredible poetry (Dream Variation) i…

Ashes to Asheville - Sarah Dooley

After Mama Lacy's death, Fella was forced to move in with her grandmother, Mrs. Madison. The move brought Fella all sorts of comforts she wasn't used to at home, but it also meant saying goodbye to her sister Zoey (a.k.a. Zany) and her other mother, Mama Shannon. Though Mama Shannon fought hard to keep Fella, it was no use. Already heartbroken, Fella soon finds herself alone in Mrs. Madison's house, grieving both the death of her mother and the loss of her entire family. Then one night, Zany shows up at Mrs. Madison's house determined to fulfill Mama Lacy's dying wish: to have her ashes spread over the lawn of the last place they were all happy as a family. Of course, this means stealing Mama Lacy's ashes and driving hundreds of miles in the middle of night to Asheville, North Carolina. Their adventure takes one disastrous turn after another, but their impulsive journey helps them rediscover the bonds that truly make them sisters.

This short but deep story of t…

Last Seen Leaving - Caleb Roehrig

Flynn's girlfriend has disappeared. How can he uncover her secrets without revealing his own?

Flynn's girlfriend, January, is missing. The cops are asking questions he can't answer, and her friends are telling stories that don't add up. All eyes are on Flynn—as January's boyfriend, he must know something.

But Flynn has a secret of his own. And as he struggles to uncover the truth about January's disappearance, he must also face the truth about himself.

This was certainly an intriguing tale that went in directions I did not expect. It was pretty brutal at times, but Roehrig did manage to examine some intense themes throughout the narrative, including rape culture, murder, intimidation, and dirty politics.
Flynn in particular was a deeply flawed but interesting character, trying to hide is sexuality even when he knew deep down how he felt about other guys. I kind of expected a relationship to develop eventually, but not quite how it actually happened in the book. Kaz…

Radio Silence - Alice Oseman

Frances has always been a study machine with one goal, elite university. Nothing will stand in her way; not friends, not a guilty secret – not even the person she is on the inside.

But when Frances meets Aled, the shy genius behind her favourite podcast, she discovers a new freedom. He unlocks the door to Real Frances and for the first time she experiences true friendship, unafraid to be herself. Then the podcast goes viral and the fragile trust between them is broken. Caught between who she was and who she longs to be, Frances’ dreams come crashing down.

Meanwhile at uni, Aled is alone, fighting even darker secrets. It’s only by facing up to your fears that you can overcome them. And it’s only by being your true self that you can find happiness. Frances is going to need every bit of courage she has.

"Hello. I hope somebody is listening...."
This is how each episode of Universe City begins, and it is also the opening line of Radio Silence, and intriguing, character-driven explor…

Wild Beauty - Anna-Marie McLemore

For nearly a century, the Nomeolvides women have tended the grounds of La Pradera, the lush estate gardens that enchant guests from around the world. They’ve also hidden a tragic legacy: if they fall in love too deeply, their lovers vanish. But then, after generations of vanishings, a strange boy appears in the gardens.

The boy is a mystery to Estrella, the Nomeolvides girl who finds him, and to her family, but he’s even more a mystery to himself; he knows nothing more about who he is or where he came from than his first name. As Estrella tries to help Fel piece together his unknown past, La Pradera leads them to secrets as dangerous as they are magical in this stunning exploration of love, loss, and family.

Lyrical, rich in detail, and full of magic, Wild Beauty is a feast for the senses. McLemore is a talented writer, and one who understands how to quietly and slowly develop characters and connections. Her previous work, When the Moon Was Ours and The Weight of Feathers, is similarly …

York: The Shadow Cipher - Laura Ruby

It was 1798 when the Morningstarr twins arrived in New York with a vision for a magnificent city: towering skyscrapers, dazzling machines, and winding train lines, all running on technology no one had ever seen before. Fifty-seven years later, the enigmatic architects disappeared, leaving behind for the people of New York the Old York Cipher—a puzzle laid into the shining city they constructed, at the end of which was promised a treasure beyond all imagining. By the present day, however, the puzzle has never been solved, and the greatest mystery of the modern world is little more than a tourist attraction.

Tess and Theo Biedermann and their friend Jaime Cruz live in a Morningstarr apartment house—until a real estate developer announces that the city has agreed to sell him the five remaining Morningstarr buildings. Their likely destruction means the end of a dream long-held by the people of New York. And if Tess, Theo and Jaime want to save their home, they have to prove that the Old Yo…