Children’s book reviews group journal

Given that I have entirely too many opinions on children’s books, I decided to start a thread on this. And I thought other people might want to follow along or also contribute. This may or may not actually be useful, or just be ranting. :joy:

I’ll post in a few more minutes, because ironically I’m being yelled at for not reading more children’s books right now. :grimacing:

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First up. Ten hungry rabbits by Anita Lobel. Excellent. Latte loves this one. Classic art, works on order words (first second etc), numbers, colors, AND common veggies. Plus a cute little story.



Fun book. Latte loves finding jumper on each page.


Love this book. So silly. We’ve had this for like 8 renews from the library. Latte sings the song from this book at random and it’s hilarious. Bonus, casual representation (not the focus of the book) of a gay couple, a NB character, and possibly one of the main characters is trans.

Love all of Anne Rockwell’s stuff. Very good for the “we’re going to do X thing, what to expect” type reading. Soooo helpful for any new experience and/or hyping them up for something. Zoo day, hiking day, the all together quilt, and apples and pumpkins are all ones we love from her too.

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Yessssss.

A random favorite I stumbled on that I don’t hear recommended often - Where Oliver Fits by Cale Atkinson. Amazon says it’s for ages 3-7, I’d say three until however old you can get away with because it’s a great message for everyone. A little puzzle piece tries to figure out where he fits, tries to change himself to fit in but isn’t happy, and finally finds his place where he can be himself.

The other one I’ve raved about recently is Finding Home / Buscando El Hogar by Esteli Meza. Ages 4-8. A rabbit’s home blows away and he goes looking for it. While he’s looking he sees his friends, they try to help but they can’t find rabbit’s home so they give him something to take with him (a picture, a flower, music). Eventually he just sits down to feel sad for a while. Then he gets up and eventually finds a new home. There’s pictures at the end of him moving in and then having his friends over. At first I thought “This is a nice story but I sense there’s a Bigger Message I’m missing.” The author was inspired by seeing Hurricane Maria devastate Puerto Rico and the strong earthquake in Mexico City in 2017. From the author’s note “So many were left homeless and had to rebuild from scratch. This makes me think about the immigrant experience, and those who leave their countries behind to find a new home.” :sob: That’s such a big thing, and I love how simply it is expressed in this book along with beautiful pictures.

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Oh yes and courtesy of Career Day having a cello page (actually I think it’s a bass oops) we’ve watched this Yo Yo Ma video a trillion times-

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Yes! Yo-Yo Ma on sesame street is why I took up the cello during school (through college). This suite was actually playing during my C-section :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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I’m not sure I can adequately express how much it annoys me that the story rhymes and the song doesn’t :joy:

Latte loves all of the Daniel tiger stories, but it’s really hard when they’re compiled in big books like this. Because it’s obvious that all the stories have different authors. some are in present tense, some are in past tense, some are in first third and even second person. Rarely they rhyme. It’s all over the damn place.

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Editor fail. Tsk. Even if they all have different authors there should be someone making sure they’re coherent across multiple books.

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There seems to be little oversight in many children’s books based on what I have seen. :crazy_face: it’s alarming haha

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The Sesame Street and Winnie the Pooh have the same voice generally.

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Agreed on the Pooh. Biscuit does too, but that’s author first not character first lol so makes sense.

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We grabbed a silly one from the library Latte is loving.

“Bathe the cat”



To do list before grandma arrives, cat messes with the magnet list, silliness follows. Two dad family as a backdrop which is my main approach for this age for diversity for her in books, esp because we have two mom families as friends but no two dad families she knows. I like her getting that exposure without it needing to be The Thing central to the book only.

Recommended! I’ve read this thing 7,000x this week and I’m only mildly sick of it, so that’s a big win.

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As a librarian, my favorite picture books are usually the really interactive ones (storytime fun!) or the snarky ones (Where Is My Hat) or both.

For both, may I present to you:
image

Bonus: two mom family! Tillie Walden’s illustrations are really fun and exaggerated as the main character spirals into having to wait forever.

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Thank you for sharing books with diverse representation!

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I’m really, really lucky with our local public library too, we’re not a big town and they get in nearly everything. And anything they haven’t that I’ve requested they’ve bought! (bea’s bees, Mae among the stars are the two I remember)

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I appreciate that Mae Among The Stars also opens up a conversation for “teachers can be wrong/hurtful” and sets up a future conversation about institutional racism.

I’ll definitely be putting holds on some of these books in the near future, or requests (we are similarly lucky in having a library that’s good about getting everything I’ve requested so far).

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We got Mr. Watson’s Chickens and my kids think it’s great :slight_smile: I also enjoy it, especially poor Mr. Nelson’s expressions as the book goes on, haha.

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Poor mr Nelson is so put upon :joy:

I love picture books and bought them over a 30 year period as my art collection. I focused on fantasy/faery themes and bought solely for the illustrations.

Later maybe I will post some pictures of my favorite contemporary illustrators. I also bought turn-of-the-century rare books and there’s some gorgeous illustrations from what is known as the “golden age of children’s book illustration” which runs from 1880 to 1920.

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I LOVE some of these. I just wish so many didn’t have some racism in them lol. But I definitely have a soft spot for that age of Children’s books illustration styles.

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Complaint review. This book annoys me.

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Weirdly negative. Very emotion denying- as if never being sad or crying, ever, is a good thing. Also “sad/glad” as a rhyme is the most lazy and overdone writing in childrens books ever.

Also can’t load photos currently app keeps crashing I’ll loop back