Saturday, April 3, 2010

Kid Konnection: Picture Books from Sterling Publishing

Every Saturday, I host a feature called Kid Konnection -- a (hopefully) regular weekend feature about anything related to children's books. Today, I are going to share with you some adorable picture books from Sterling Publishing.

Summary: Meet Wilbur, who won’t wash his hands after going potty. Wilma, who waits too long…and sometimes doesn’t make it in time. And Freddie, who’s afraid to flush. These are just a few of the preschool animals who need a little help with their bathroom etiquette! With wit and good humor, Hope Vestergaard presents a unique “toilet basics” guide for toddlers. It covers everything from lifting the seat and closing the door to planning ahead when you’re on a trip. All told in cheerful rhyme, with hilarious illustrations, it’s a fun way to handle a serious subject. PLAN AHEAD! DON’T WAIT TOO LONG! GO POTTY BEFORE YOU SLEEP! EXCUSE YOURSELF! KNOCK FIRST! BE SURE TO LIFT UP THE SEAT! CLOSE THE DOOR! DON’T LOLLYGAG! NEVER FORGET TO WIPE!WASH YOUR HANDS! ZIP AND FLUSH! ALWAYS TURN OUT THE LIGHT! -- Sterling

What can I really say about POTTY ANIMALS: WHAT TO KNOW WHEN YOU"VE GOTTA GO! by Hope Vestergaard and illustrated by Valeria Petrone? Booking Son absolutely adored it, and I have to say that reading this book to him was a blast. This book is one that every kid (or every kid that I've ever met) can use because it's all about bathroom etiquette.

The book can a catchy, rhyming cadence; and the pictures are adorable of the potty animals. Each one of the potty animals has a bad (and sometimes quite nasty) potty habit. They include not washing hands, not shutting the door, not zipping up pants, missing the potty, waiting too long, etc. The book ends with a long list of good potty etiquette summarizing all of the points in the book. All of the rules are presented in a light-hearted way, but they are still very effective.

I was surprised by how much of this book stayed with Booking Son. He has a few of the bad habits and he consciously started working on them after reading this book. He also has been pointing out when other kids don't follow the "potty rules."

POTTY ANIMALS is definitely a hit in our house! If you don't mind a little "potty humor," then this book is well worth checking out.

Summary: When a snake slithers into the sleepy town of Dustpan, Texas, the sheriff knows for darned sure that it shouldn’t be allowed to stay—even if it’s really a friendly kind of rattler. No matter if the neighborly reptile has managed to charm the customers at the local restaurant, entertain the Ladies Sewing and join the kids for playtime. After all, that’s the law of the west: NO RATTLESNAKES! But when little Idie Mae Tumbleweed crawls her way over to dangerous Deadman’s Gulch, the rattler proves he’s one jim-dandy hero. Author Sarah Burell and illustrator Bryan Langdo have whipped up one very funny wild-west tale with a unique new star. -- Sterling

by Sarah Burell and illustrated by Bryan Langdo is a another very cute picture book. The story is about a sheriff of a small town named Dustpan where nothing every happens. To pass the time, the sheriff decides to get another job babysitting kids. As soon as he begins his new job watching little Idie Mae, a rattlesnake comes to town and seems to want to make some trouble. The sheriff tries to drive him out of town, but the snake has other plans.

I really enjoyed this story and I think kids will too. While I'm not a fan of snakes of any sort, I couldn't help but like this sweet, smiling rattlesnake. He definitely brought some excitement to the sleepy town, and he even ended up becoming a hero!

DIAMOND JIM DANDY AND THE SHERIFF is a fun story that is sure to be read over-and-over again. The pictures of the snake and the townspeople are just wonderful, and there aren't a lot of words on each page so it's perfect for preschoolers.

Summary: Reach for the Stars is a wonderful way to encourage and congratulate those, regardless of age, who are celebrating a milestone…and feel ready to SPREAD THEIR WINGS AND FLY! The young hero of Serge Bloch’s delightful Butterflies in My Stomach is back, along with his loyal dog Roger. Having mastered the first day of school, the two are embarking further on the perilous journey of life. Like all of us, they encounter many FORKS IN THE ROAD and UPHILL BATTLES—but they also find that there’s no better time than right now to REACH FOR THE STARS and SHOOT FOR THE MOON.And just as with his Butterflies in My Stomach, Bloch’s witty art—a wonderful mix of whimsical line drawings and photography—will delight, charm, and inspire. -- Sterling

REACH FOR THE STARS AND OTHER ADVICE FOR LIFE'S JOURNEY by Serge Bloch is a wonderful book of advice and encouragement. I don't know what I was expecting, but I was a little surprised by how much I loved it! It's one of those books that will mean something different to you each and every time you pick it up.

I'm not sure what I enjoyed more about REACH FOR THE STARS -- the inspirational advice or the illustrations. The advice is nothing that you haven't heard before. In fact, each page contains some popular idioms from the English language such as "You might feel like a fish out of water" and "Dust yourself off! Get back in the saddle!" The author combines all of the idioms together to make a sound book of encouragement.

I also loved the simple yet effective illustrations. Each page is filled with line drawings that are mixed with photography. The pictures are without a doubt eye-catching and cute at the same time.

REACH FOR THE STARS is a fabulous idea for a gift for anyone celebrating an important event whether it be someone graduating from school or even someone starting a new job. There is a ton of good advice and life lessons that will definitely prove inspirational in someone's life.

Summary: From one newborn foal walking on wobbly legs and five open-billed nestlings eager for food to eleven children playing in the park and twelve church bells ringing, this lovely picture book celebrates spring, Easter, and new life. Joy N. Hulme and Dan Andreasen, who created the beautiful Stable in Bethlehem, once again capture the spirit of a holiday and a season. Hulme’s gentle rhyme and Andreasen’s softly-hued, charming pictures work in perfect harmony, and the adorable bunnies, fuzzy yellow chicks, and frolicking lambs will enchant children. -- Sterling

And last, but certainly not least, I thought I'd mention a book that's perfect for this time of year called EASTER BABIES: A SPRINGTIME COUNTING BOOK by Joy H. Hulme and illustrated by Dan Andreasen. It's a beautiful little picture book that not only introduces the concept of counting, but it also shows some adorable signs of springtime.

Booking Son is a little too old for this book, but it is perfect for toddlers and early preschool-age children. The book counts different signs of spring from one to twelve including bunnies, chicks, lambs, piglets, and church bells. The illustrations manage to enhance the feeling of this springtime book. The pictures almost look like they were painted with watercolors (I am so not an artist!) and the colors are soft and warm.

I highly recommend EASTER BABIES for young children. It's a beautiful book that is sure to capture their attention while at the same time reinforcing the concept of counting.

If you'd like to participate in Kid Konnection and share a post about anything related to children's books (picture, middle grade, or young adult) from the past week, please leave a comment as well as a link below with your name/blog name and the title of the book! Feel free to grab the little button too!


Beth F said...

Another post for me to bookmark for potential gifts ...

rhapsodyinbooks said...

These are great, and I especially love the Potty Animals! :--)

Anonymous said...

Potty Animals- what a name but a great idea. Others look fun too. All my nieces and nephews now too old for picture books. Maybe not the 4 y.o. twin boys. I don't know anymore.

bermudaonion said...

A lot of great looking books for kids. Any book that helps kids develop good potty habits will be a winner with moms!

Billy Burgess said...

Good Reviews!