Animal Character

This category contains 39 posts

THE BEAR ATE YOUR SANDWICH by Julia Sarcone-Roach…2016-17 Star of the North nominee

I was unenthusiastic about The Bear Ate Your Sandwich until the end.  I thought it was boring during my first read-through.  Because the narrator is in question it was ineffective as a story for me until the final pages.  I have to say, though, that when the narrator is revealed the story takes on a … Continue reading

HENSEL AND GRETEL: NINJA CHICKS by Corey Rosen Schwartz & Rebecca Gomez Illustrated by Dan Santat

Simply, phenomenal!  Hensel & Gretel:  Ninja Chicks is my favorite in this picture book series so far!  In this version of the Hansel & Gretel fairy tale, Mama has been taken by the evil fox at large in their community.  Hensel & Gretel see the sign advertising the Three Pigs Dojo “Get Empowered, Not Devoured” (read … Continue reading

WOLFIE THE BUNNY by Ame Dyckman…2016-17 Star of the North nominee

Wolfie the Bunny is a delightful tale about the power of love.  When a bunny family finds a wolf cub left in a basket on their doorstep the bunny parents immediately adopt him and treat him as their beloved son.  Their young daughter, Dot, insists that it is a  bad idea and Wolfie will eventually … Continue reading

NIGHT ANIMALS by Gianna Marino…2016-17 Star of the North nominee

Night Animals is the perfect marriage of text and illustration in a picture book. Possum is hiding.  Skunk, alarmed, joins him.  Together they hide from “night animals.”  To their surprise, Wolf, claiming to also be afraid of something bigger and scarier than himself is next to join.  Then, to their shock, Bear has the same … Continue reading

THE SECRET CHICKEN SOCIETY by Judy Cox…2016-17 LOVELACE nominee Division I

Before I even start this review I feel obligated to admit that I am biased:  I don’t like chickens.  I wasn’t looking forward to reading this particular book.  I will also admit that my dislike of actual chickens faded to the background as I read Judy Cox’s The Secret Chicken Society. It begins with Daniel, … Continue reading

8 CLASS PETS + 1 SQUIRREL /1 DOG = CHAOS by Vivian Vande Velde…2015-16 LOVELACE Nominee Division I

8 Class Pets is a great independent reading choice for the younger readers of Lovelace nominees in 2015-16.  Vivian Vande Velde is a master of clear, direct dialogue and this is a huge advantage in this story of Twitch the Squirrel and his manic adventure through the school. Looking for a way to escape a … Continue reading


The Mouse with the Question Mark Tail is a simple, cute story.  Mouse Minor is small…very small…the smallest mouse in the Royal Mews in the court of Queen Victoria.  He is constantly getting into fights with his older, bigger classmates.  He knows the Headmaster doesn’t like him and when one fight goes too far he … Continue reading

THE CHICKEN SQUAD: The First Misadventure by Doreen Cronin Illustrated by Kevin Cornwell

Delightfully slapstick in nature The Chicken Squad builds on the tiny, comical characters who first appear in The Trouble with Chickens, the original J.J. Tully mystery.  A perfect graduation from her brilliant picture books, these short, easy chapter books by Doreen Cronin (of Click, Clack, Moo fame) provide an ideal bridge for young readers. J.J. … Continue reading


Lantern Sam is a dual narrative:  one part told by 10-year-old Henry Shipley and one told in flashback by Lantern Sam (a male calico cat).  Henry’s narration relates the events on the Shoreliner (a famous express train taking passengers from New York to Chicago–960 miles–in less than 20 hours) in 1938 when he and Sam first … Continue reading

GHOST DOG SECRETS by Peg Kehret…LOVELACE nominee 2014-15 Division I and II

My children (ages 10 & 11) and I started reading Ghost Dog Secrets as a bedtime story.  Everyone in our family is a dog-lover so when the kids found out Ghost Dog Secrets was on both Division lists for the Lovelace Award it was the first one they chose for our family storytime.  After finishing Chapter 7 both … Continue reading