Thursday, April 26, 2012

Recent Non-fiction

The President's Stuck in the Bathtub: Poems about the Presidents
By Susan Katz, illustrated by Robert Neubecker
Published 2012 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
I read about this one right before it showed up on the New Book cart and was instantly drawn to it. This book is fantastic! I love the use of poetry to provide interesting facts about our presidents. I very much want to use this book as part of a presidential/historical program. The poems are fun and give new details that kids will love to discover about people they probably think are boring (come on, don't kid yourself). There are brief notes and presidential quotes in the back. I think once this book is discovered by one kid, all his/her friends are soon going to know about it too.

Outside Your Window: A First Book of Nature
By Nicola Davies, illustrated by Mark Hearld
Published 2012 by Candlewick Press
Recently, my colleagues and I have been having numerous discussions about non-fiction aimed at the very young. We are seeing more and more requests for books about non-fiction topics for younger and younger patrons (yes, these requests more often come from the parents). I don't think this is going to end any time soon, so I was pleased to discover this title among our new books. This is a book filled with simple yet interesting and descriptive poems about nature through the seasons. The illustrations are lovely and engaging. I think this book would really work during a program about nature for younger kids. My exact notes are "vibrant" and "appealing."

Diego Rivera: His World and Ours
By Duncan Tonatiuh
Published 2011 by Abrams
This title recently won the Pura Belpre Illustrator Award so I was happy to stumble across it on the new book cart. This book is a fantastic picture book biography that introduces young readers to a very important artist. The first part gives a brief introduction to Rivera and his work, with illustrations in a style strikingly reminiscent of Rivera's. The second part imagines what Diego would paint if he were alive today, with side-by-side then and now comparisons. Back matter includes a bibliography, the inspiration behind the illustrations and a list of where you can find Rivera's work in real life. This is a really wonderful book.

Here Come the Girl Scouts!
By Shana Corey, illustrated by Hadley Hooper
Published 2012 by Scholastic Press
I'm not gonna lie - I can't give an honest review of this book. Not because I know the author or anything, simply because when I saw this book, I totally freaked out. You see, I was a Girl Scout for my entire childhood (age 4-18) and I have a lot of great memories. This book is absolutely wonderful if you've ever been a Girl Scout - I got teary-eyed a number of times. Daisy's story is inspiring and fascinating. The illustrations here are very well-suited to the text. I love everything about this book - this is actually a picture book I would love to own, even though I have no children to share it with. I completely love this one.

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