Wild Picture Books

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So many new picture books, so little time . . . Here are the newly published books I’m recommending this summer, 2015.
P.S. These aren’t just for your littlest readers, they’re great for older readers as well. Remember how much your kids enjoy reading with you. They need to hear the vocabulary, see the illustrations, visualize the story, and enjoy these stories. And, if your older readers don’t want to listen to you read to them, do what I do: leave the books piled around the house. My kids can’t resist just peeking in to see . . . and then, they keep reading.

Wild Picture Books, Summer 2015

Milo is Not a Dog Today
Milo is Not a Dog Today
by Kerstin Schoene and Nina Gunetsreiner
Milo is a dog with a BIG imagination. He loves to pretend he’s other animals — a rooster, a sheep, a ladybug. But will he ever find a friend who has an imagination as big as his? I loved the ending and the hope that we can find people like us, even just one person. (Or dog.)
The Short Giraffe
The Short Giraffe
by Neil Flory, illustrated by Mark Cleary
The giraffes are ready to take a group photo but the littlest giraffe doesn’t make it into the frame. After trying and trying to make him taller, an even better solution is found! Love the creative problem-solving.
I will fight monsters for you
I Will Fight Monsters for You
by Santi Balmes, illustrates by Lyona
This clever parallel story of a young girl (and a young monster) who are both frightened to sleep because of the upside down world of monsters (and humans) beneath (above) their beds. Luckily, dads will fight monsters for their kids and they give good advice: “the size of the monsters depends on how scared you are. If you feel very brave, the monster will shrink and run away” and “fear is elastic, like bubble gum. As you grow braver, fear shrinks smaller and smaller until it disappears.” Creative, reassuring, and heart-warming!
Explore the most unsuitable pets for kids — from a warthog to an alligator — in this silly story. (Of course, I love the main character’s name, too.)
The Big Princess
The Big Princess
by Taro Miura
In an oversized book about a king and queen who are given a tiny princess to love, we see their unconditional love for the fast growing princess who is under a spell. Gorgeous graphic illustrations!
Cow Tripped
The Cow Tripped Over the Moon A Nursery Rhyme Emergency
by Jeanne Willis, illustrated by Joel Stewart
The cow fell, the Rock-a-Bye Baby did, too. Someone fell off a wall and a weasel goes pop. The Nursery Rhyme ambulance helps them all in this clever rhyming story.
Touch the Brightest Star
Touch the Brightest Star
by Christie Matheson
We love this sweet, interactive picture book. Touch, press, pat, and blow as you say good-night to the deer, the tree, the stars, and the owls. Shhh. Breathe in deeply. It’s time to sleep! Your youngest readers will really enjoy this. 🙂 Added to: The Best Picture Books for Age 2.
It’s up to William (the cat) to track down the missing painting, the famous Mona Cheesa. He follows the clues and finds the culprit — MICE! This is a fun and entertaining story.
Rechargeables Eat Move Sleep
The Rechargeables: Eat Move Sleep
by Tom Rath, illustrated by Carlos Aon
It’s hard to combine a specific life lesson and make a compelling narrative that isn’t too preachy or didactic. In this new book by the author of How Full Is Your Bucket? Rath mostly succeeds in creating a reasonable story that children will enjoy and remember the lessons. As you may have guessed from the title, the foremost lesson is: eating healthy, moving around, and sleeping well at night keep us fully charged. It’s not a subtle story, perhaps a bit over-the-top with the lessons but you’ll come away from the book having fully realized what the author’s intent was.
The Elephantom
by Ross Collins
An elephantom is a ghost elephant. He’s getting this little girl in trouble and keeping her awake all night. Her parents don’t understand but her grandma knows just what to do (she has a lot of ghost pets.) You’ll love the fun, surprising ending!
Flip Flap Safari
Flip Flap Safari
by Alex Sheffter
Flip the top or bottom of the animals to invent totally wild and crazy new animals. A lion can become a “liingo” when combined with a flamingo bottom. Or pair a cheetah with a warthot and you get a “cheetahog.” Lots of fun but with a bit more text than I would normally like to see in a picture book.
I Yam a Donkey!
I Yam a Donkey!
by Cece Bell
This silly but frustrating conversation between an intelligent yam and a not-so-smart donkey will most likely make you laugh, especially if you’re a grammar kind of person.
by Sarah Weeks, illustrated by David Small
Cat owners know that living the high life is precisely what cats aspire to do. And lucky for Glamourpuss, she’s lavished with everything she needs to be . . . glamorous. That is until Bluebell the dog arrives with a visiting relative. I love the vivid illustrations and true-to-life dreams of a diva cat — who transforms the dog into a glamorous dog!
Double Happiness
Double Happiness
by Nancy Tupper Ling, illustrated by Alina Chau
Written in poems, this is a bittersweet story of moving from their home, saying goodbye to family and favorite things and traveling to a new, colder home. Throughout, Gracie shares her feelings and her observations as well as her wonderful imagination. The text is simple but meaningful. Wonderful!
Princess who had no kingdom
The Princess Who Had No Kingdom
by Ursula Jones, illustrated by Sarah Gibb
This is a wonderful newly created fairy tale about a determined, beautiful, and intelligent princess who, despite having no kingdom, makes her life excellent. And I adore, adore, adore Sarah Gibb’s art! Her illustrations are truly amazing.
Vegetables in Underwear
by Jared Chapman
I’ve read a lot of books about underwear, but this is my first vegetable underwear book!! It’s totally adorable, too. “I wear underwear, you wear underwear, we all wear underwear,” shout the veggies who also model underwear opposites: dirty / clean, serious / funny, and so forth. I think your kids will love it! Added to: The Best Picture Books for Age 2.

Just Itzy
Just Itzy
by Lana Krumwiede, illustrated by Greg  Pizzoli
LOVE! Itzy combines all the spider stories / songs into one funny story about Itzy going to kindergarten. First he chases a fly and accidentally scares a little girl on a tuffet only to get swallowed by an old lady (who also swallowed a lot of other crazy things!) When he’s coughed back up, he tries to build a web. As he does, it starts raining and he struggles to keep going up the yes, you guessed it, the waterspout.

I'm Brave
I’m Brave
by Kate & Jim McMullan
Firefighter fans are going to love to read about the life of a brave (and good looking’) fire engine driving through smoke and heat to a blazing fire. Filled with lots of delightful sound effects: CLANG, HONK, WHOOSSSSSH and EEEEEEOWOOOO for young children. Added to: The Best Picture Books for Age 2.

Send for a Superhero
Send for a Superhero!
by Michael Rosen, illustrated by Katharine McEwen
We follow along as Dad reads Emily and little Elmer a comic about villains (Filth and Vacuum) who can’t be stopped — until Boring Man comes along. What will happen next?
funny thing
unny Thing Happened On the Way to School
by Davida Cali, illustrated by Benjamin Chaud
Want your kids to learn about hyperbole? Then this is the book for you! You see, this little boy is late for school because . . . well, it’s one thing after another but let’s just say evil ninjas, an elephant parade, and a boy playing a magic pipe ALL thwarted him being on time. Very funny!
new picture books I'm loving, summer 2015




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