At the 2016 summer SCBWI conference I had the pleasure of attending a session led by editor Neil Porter. During that hour, he invited author/illustrator Antoinette Portis on stage to discuss and read from her picture book, Best Frints in the Whole Universe. I fell in love with this PB instantly. It has everything I love in a PB: quirk, humor, and a lot of heart. It’s one of my favorites and I’m excited to gush about it today.
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Today is a special day on the blog because I’m gushing about The Green Umbrella, a darling picture book written by Jackie Azua Kramer and illustrated by Maral Sassouni!
I was given an opportunity to read it last fall and I instantly tumbled head over heels for this story about imagination. The language is gorgeous, and the texture and intricacies of the illustrations had me finding new details each time I read. I COULD NOT put this book down.
Continue reading “Meet the Characters of Jackie Azua Kramer’s The Green Umbrella + Giveaway”
It’s a bird. It’s a plane. No, it’s Astro! And he’s picking up speed fast. Oh No, Astro! written by Matt Roeser and illustrated by Brad Woodard is filled with fun words, stellar illustrations, and space-y facts, all sure to enthuse future space cadets. And to top it off, the humor will have little ones laughing from cover to cover. Grab your telescope and prepare for some serious gushing. I love this book!
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I first heard part of this book read aloud at the SCBWI LA Conference in August. Editor Melissa Manlove read it with gusto during a panel and she had the audience of 1,000+ people cracking up. So when she abruptly closed the book halfway through, you bet your bottom I had to finish it. President Squid by Aaron Reynolds and illustrated by Sara Varon is a fun and LOL-worthy PB with one ridiculous protagonist. This (very current and relevant) political satire will get the whole room rolling.
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I’m really excited to share my thoughts on Water Is Water, written by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Jason Chin. To put it simply, this picture book is beautiful. It’s the most beautiful concept PB I’ve read. I knew I was going to love it from the first spread.
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I’ve been waiting to get my paws on this picture book and, just as I suspected, it did not disappoint. There Was on Old Dragon Who Swallowed a Knight, written by Penny Parker Klostermann and illustrated by Ben Mantle, is officially one of my favorite PBs. The rhyme is fun, fast-paced, and flawless. And the illustrations pop with color and hilarity.
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As a kid, I’m sure most of you, like me, claimed to see shapes or faces in your soup. A la veggies or rice, of course. I know all of you saw words in your vegetable broth courtesy of alphabet noodles. Those were fun, right? But a GIRAFEE in your soup? An alligator? A whale? That would have been crazy. That intrigue drew me straight toward Ross Burach’s There’s a Giraffe in My Soup. It’s ladles of fun!
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Conversation voice picture books are difficult to master. Try telling a compelling story through dialogue alone. It’s TOADally not easy. Which is one of the reasons I’m gushing about I Don’t Want to Be a Frog, written by Dev Petty and illustrated by Mike Boldt. Hop down to read the rest of today’s gush!
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When I previewed Nellie Belle (written by Mem Fox and illustrated by Mike Austin) at the 2015 SCBWI L.A. Summer Conference, I was hooked after the first spread. Of course, it’s hard not to immediately love a book when the wonderful Mem Fox stands on stage and delivers the most perfect picture book reading EVER. She captivated 5,000+ attendees with her musical and theatrical reading techniques. We all listened and laughed in awe. With a deep-rooted love for singsongy PBs as well as excitable pups, I dedicate this gush to Nellie Belle.
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Fairytale characters? Check! Figure skates? Check! Tons of twizzles, turns, and arabesques? Check, check, check! I recently picked up Little Red Gliding Hood, written by Tara Lazar and illustrated by Troy Cummings, and oh what a treat it is! This picture book is jam-packed with humor, suspense, and fun figure skating moves to keep you warm and toasty. I’m a sucker for fractured fairytales and this one’s got me gushing like crazy.
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