Queen of Kindergarten (Penguin Random House) by Derrick Barnes, illustrated by Vanessa Brantley-Newton, doesn’t come out until May 24, but the reviews are already rolling in. Booklist says: Brantley-Newton brings the fun of King of Kindergarten (2019) back in this companion book’s vibrant illustrations and racially diverse characters. MJ’s kindness and self-assuredness set a wonderful example for readers,who may also be preparing to expand their worlds, whether attending school or participating in anew group activity. A great choice for combating first-day jitters and building confidence. And the Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books says: this story exudes joy, celebrating the kid who walks into the room and owns it with sunny confidence and genuine warmth. The art is rich with textures, creating an effusive sense of movement as geometric patterns in various objects and clothing contrast with dappled splotches and soft blending in the background. There’s not a dull color in this palette of vivid tones, and dynamic figures convey the cheerful busyness of the classroom. Pre order your copy here!
Congratulations to our artists who have been recognized by Bank Street Books as being among the best books of the year. Included on the list are Like a Dandelion (HarperCollins) by Huy Voun Lee, Off to See the Sea (Sourcebooks) by Niki Grimes, illustrated by Elizabeth Zunon, Paletero Man (HarperCollins) by Lucky Diaz, illustrated by Micah Player, Coqui in the City (Dial) by Nomar Perez, When My Cousins Come to Town (West Margin Press), by Angela Shante, illustrated by Keisha Morris, There Goes Patti McGee! (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), by Tootie Nienow, illustrated by Erika Medina, King of Ragtime (Simon & Schuster), by Stephen Costanza, Secrets of the Sea (Clarion) by Evan Griffith, illustrated by Joanie Stone and Stitch by Stitch (Holiday House) by Connie Schofield-Morrison, illustrated by Elizabeth Zunon. Congratulations everyone! See the full list here
Emily’s Big Discovery,(Candlewick) by Liz Kessler, illustrated by Joanie Stone is the first in a sparkling, charmingly illustrated series of readers that brings half-mermaid Emily Windsnap—star of the New York Times best-selling series—to a younger audience. With a mermaid tail and an entire ocean awaiting her, Emily is eager to meet new friends and swim off on big adventures in this inviting new series for the younger set. Get the book here
Kirkus has given a starred review to Mommy’s Hometown (Candlewick) by Hope Lim, illustrated by Jaime Kim. A child visits their mother’s hometown and is surprised to find it now differs from her recollections. Mommy regales the young narrator with bedtime stories about a playful, carefree childhood. Against the backdrop of a verdant countryside and towering mountains, a lush river provided ample opportunity for Mommy and her friends to catch fish, splash, and treasure hunt. Idyllic and joyful, these vivid memories have given the child high expectations for an upcoming visit. A train car window offers the first glimpse of a vastly different landscape. Bustling streets and gleaming skyscrapers crowd the horizon, and the mountains struggle to be seen. The striking contrast between reality and anticipation both awes and disappoints the child. Yet while many things have changed, the river still flows through the city center. Hand in hand, Mommy and child wade in, re-creating the cherished moments of Mommy’s youth. The pair make their own memories in this special place, reinforcing that it is familial bonds and unconditional love that define home rather than physical surroundings. A tranquil warmth radiates from the illustrations, providing an underlying feeling of safety […]
In addition to his wonderful children’s book art, Michael Slack is also a fine artist. Currently he has two colored pencil and acryla gouache drawings on display at The Compound Gallery in Emerville, CA. See more about the gallery here
A Sprinkle of Sadie (Affirm Press) written by Lana Spasevski, illustrated by Joanie Stone has been published in Australia. In this sweet chapter book, Sadie needs to throw a surprise birthday for her mum, help out at the Cookgrove fundraising day,and welcome someone new to her class. But Sadie’s sweet intentions do not always go to plan! Her vanilla ice-cream cake for Mum is as flat as a pancake. Her cupcake stall has tough competition. And her welcome treat is not welcomed! Can Sadie find a way to save the day? In these three sprinkle-filled stories (complete with recipes!) the unstoppable Sadie shows that any problem can be solved with generosity, kindness and, of course, a delicious baked treat. This book is the first in a series. Congratulations Joanie! Learn more about the book here