Sunday, June 24, 2012

Red Knit Cap Girl

Naoko Stoop is a self-taught artist whose love of art began at the age of 5 but who set it aside until after her schooling.  She now creates art specifically geared towards young children - the time when she herself fell in love with art.  Red Knit Cap Girl is her first picture book, and it tells the charming story of a nature loving girl who wants to talk with the moon.  

I love the illustrations.  The artwork is done on a plywood canvas in acrylic, ink and pencil.  The grains of the wood breathe life, texture and movement into every page.  The color palette is perfect for a book that takes place in the forest and helps the reader to escape into nature with the Red Knit Cap Girl.  

At the start of the story the Red Knit Cap Girl is alone with a bunny but in her search for the moon she finds her forest friends.  They decide to throw a party for the Moon, so she will know they are there.  They make paper lanterns and light up the sky, "But there is just silence."  The story has a sweet ending and accompanies the beautiful illustrations nicely.

The characters, images and story are presented with simplicity but the textures of the wood grain and the color schemes create a magical feeling.  My kids love this book.  So much that every time I have sat down to write a post about it, I have not been able to find the book - it has been tucked away in their bedroom or in the corner of a pop-up reading tent or whichever corner they have last been reading it in.

I am excited because you too can have this book for your children (or you!) to haul around your house to read, imagine and play with.  I have one copy to giveaway!

The giveaway is open until this Friday, June 29th.
Here is how you can enter to win:
- leave a comment on this post,
- link to the post on Facebook,
- tweet about the post, or
- pin the post on pinterest
You will receive one entry for each thing you do from the list above (up to four entries).  Make sure and leave a comment for each of your entries.

Good luck!!

I received a review copy of this book, but all opinions are my own. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Summer Reading List

Summer starts at our house on Tuesday afternoon when school is officially out.  We have been busy making plans for the summer: chasing fireflies, homemade ice cream, s'mores and campouts, lemonade stands and lots of swimming.   But one of my favorite parts of summer are the mornings spent at our local library piling our bags full of books to read, whether by the pool or curled up next to the air conditioned vent.  So I was very excited when I saw this post pop up in my reader: 37 Super Summer Reading Lists for Kids Ages 0 - 10 over at Delightful Children's Books.  Amy has linked to every book list imaginable - click through the links and create your summer library list - I know I am!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Time to Eat

I saw a new trio of non-fiction books come into my library recently.  All three books are small, geared towards a younger audience and look at some of the daily habits of animals: eating, sleeping and bathing. Actually, as you read through the books you learn that for some animals, these habits are not so daily.  I love the style of husband and wife duo - Steve Jenkins and Robin Page - the images are simple, the text is short, but the reader leaves with a lot of information and intrigue.

I read Time to Eat out loud to three boys - a 5, 4 and 3 year old.  The book starts with the question, "What is your favorite food?"  To which I heard gleeful screams, "Pizza!  Macaroni and cheese!"  They were quick to find out that these animals ate very differently from them.  Whether it was a Panda Bear eating bamboo shoots for 12 hours a day or an anaconda eating only four or five meals a year, swallowed whole, and sometimes as large as a jaguar, they were fascinated.  Their favorite was, of course, the dung beetle.

I love the fascinating, yet brief information that keeps even young children engaged.  But at the end of the book there is a section with more information on each animal.  After reading that a young blue whale can gain 200 pounds in 24 hours, the five year old wanted to know how big blue whales can get - thanks to the end page bios on each animal, I could tell him up to 390,000 pounds.

This is a fantastic non-fiction book - definitely one to add to your own collection or your library bag.  I can't wait to check out the other two in this series - Time to Sleep and Time for a Bath.

For more great Non-Fiction reads - check out this weeks round-up of Non-Fiction Monday at True Tales & A Cherry On Top.