Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Congratulations to the winner of our custom poster give-away sponsored by Uprinting.com. Chosen by random.org, the winner is:
I would make a poster of my daughter's sixteenth birthday photo for her room. firstname.lastname@example.org
I'll be notifying you by email. To those who are disappointed not to win, our give-aways for custom greeting cards and a custom vinyl banner are still open.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Do Monkeys Tweet? (Hardcover), by Melanie Walsh. Like the other books in this series, this one depicts various animals engaged in unusual (for them) activities, with a question posed to the reader. "Do horses bark?," "Do little mice purr?," etc. The answer (always, until the last page, a resounding, "no!") is answered on the following page, with the proper creature performing the activity. It's a short, simple book, with enough repetition to engage the toddler set.
"Do horses bark? / No, dogs do. Woof! Woof!"
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: He seemed a bit hesitant about that cover image of the monkey at first, but now he's read it a few times. He likes it, almost as much as the first in this series. He shouts out, "no!" each time he turns the page.
Parent's Peeve: Same issue of the cover not being in the book. (Cute how the monkey is hanging upside down on the back cover, though).
Do Donkeys Dance? (Hardcover), by Melanie Walsh. Same format as the other two books in the series. This one includes, among others, a hopping hippo, hanging cat, and leaping turtle.
"Can a ladybug stand on one leg? No, but a flamingo can."
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: He enjoys it, shouting out the usual "no." I struggle to slow him down to see if he's actually digesting what the question is. The last page asks, "Can you fly up in the sky?" and he always shouts, "no!" (can't say he's wrong about that), but the actual answer is "Yes! Bon voyage!" with an illustration of an airplane. So, after a few reads, he now yells "no!" and then, after he turns the page, "sneaky!" because it's sort of a trick question. :)
Parent's Peeve: If it's on the cover, it should be in the book. OK, I'll stop saying that now. Until the next review. Also, for an animal that hops, I think a bunny would have been better than a flea.
When I read books as an adult, I often will find one author I love and then rush through everything he or she has written. I remember when our son was very young, he LOVED a board book called Peek-a-Who by Nina Laden, so I went online and ordered every one she'd written (not a huge fan of library board books when children are still putting things in their mouth)(I reviewed all four of the Nina Laden books here). For the most part, though, we tend to hop around from author to author.
What authors have been such hits with your kids that they've sent you back for more?
Monday, September 28, 2009
Today during a trip to the library I decided to pick up Shel Silverstein's A Light in the Attic, Where the Sidewalk Ends, and Falling Up. The first two, at least, are on lists of "banned books" that I've seen in connection with Banned Books Week. My son is still too young to enjoy them (not quite age two yet), but I loved these books when younger and have been looking forward to rereading them with him someday. So instead of any full reviews tonight, I'm just offering up a poem from A Light in the Attic:
PUT SOMETHING IN
Draw a crazy picture,
Write a nutty poem,
Sing a mumble-gumble song,
Whistle through your comb.
Do a loony-goony dance
'Cross the kitchen floor,
Put something silly in the world
That ain't been there before.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Just a quick reminder to go and enter our three current give-aways, for a total of over $175 worth of personalized printing. (All are sponsored by Uprinting.com, but unlike their previous give-aways, they don't involve any shipping or handling charges). All can be used to make really fun, unique holiday gifts. What grandparents wouldn't like a custom poster print of their grandkids? How about a custom flag for a little pirate-loving toddler? A head-start on Christmas or thank you cards? Please go enter, but do it quickly, because some of them are ending very soon:
Here is the link to enter to win an 18" x 24" custom poster print of any of your images (value: $24). Deadline is September 30, 2009.
Here is the link to enter to win 250 custom greeting cards (value: $90+). Deadline is October 1, 2009.
Here is the link to enter to win a 24" x 36" custom vinyl banner (value: $62). Deadline is October 18, 2009.
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
"Two penguins in the penguin house were a little bit different. One was named Roy, and the other was named Silo. Roy and Silo were both boys. But they did everything together. / They bowed to each other. And walked together. They sang to each other. And swam together. Where ever Roy went, Silo went too."
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Well, we still have an open give-away for a custom poster print (go enter! this would make such a fun holiday gift, and few people have entered, giving you great odds to win). But Uprinting.com is just going wild with the give-aways lately. I know some of you entered and didn't win our last give-away of 250 custom greeting cards, and they're offering another set! This time, they've listened to feedback and eliminated the shipping fee. So it's just a good old fashioned freebie.
"'I'm green,' said Pete. 'I want to be pink. Everyone else is.'"
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: Honestly, he's not really into it. I can't get him to sit still for it. I'm a little surprised, because he enjoys seeing flamingoes at the aviary. I'm going to keep trying. As always, I figure he might just be a little young for it. The illustrations (a cut paper collage style) don't vary all that much from page to page - the flamingoes and alligator partake in a few activities, but there isn't much in the way of background. I think this minimal amount of extras suits the simplicity of the story, but it also means that after he's seen the flamingo and alligator once, he's kind of ready to move on. I really do think he'll like this one when the text means more to him.
Hop Jump (Paperback), by Ellen Stoll Walsh. Betsy is a little bit different than the frogs around her. The other frogs go "Hop jump, hop jump. It's always the same." Betsy, on the other hand, takes her cue from some floating, twisting leaves, and decides to cut a rug (lilypad?) with some lovely movements of her own. "'It's called dancing,' she said." The other frogs are a bit taken aback, and tell Betsy that there is no room for dancing. Betsy goes and finds her own place to dance. The curious frogs follow her, and "before too long their feet began to move." Another wonderful tale about being unique, refusing to conform, and acceptance of others. My favorite part is the conclusion (see excerpt); no sour grapes for Betsy.
"Soon all the frogs were dancing. All but one. 'Hey, no room for hopping,' said the frogs. 'Oh yes, there's room,' said Betsy. 'For dancing and for hopping."
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: Again, I'm a bit perplexed at his lack of interest, because he loves frogs. If he starts to show an interest, I'll consider this one for our permanent collection. It's that cute.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
"Two Little Blackbirds. Two little blackbirds Sitting on a hill. One was named Jack And one was named Jill. Fly away, Jack, Fly away, Jill, / Come back, Jack, / Come back, Jill. Two little blackbirds Sitting on a hill. - Anonymous"
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: We first received this book at 12 months, and he had no interest in it. I recently pulled it out again, and it definitely has a lot more appeal. Some of the pages (the poems, usually) still fail to grab him, but he enjoys word book type pages, as well as the counting, shapes, and alphabet sections. He probably likes 75% of the book now, and I am betting he'll grow into the other 25%. He loves doing hand motions for the poem I've excerpted above, after we saw it in the back of a Highlights magazine a few months ago.
"Red light, stop. Green light, go. / Cars and trucks drive to and fro."
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: Of the three we read this week, I think this one captured his interest the most. The style of the colorful illustrations (by Ken Wilson-Max) seems suited for his young age. I think he enjoys it enough to consider purchasing our own copy, which I don't do very often these days.
"train on the track clickety clack / behind the sign, cars in line/ street after street under our feet"
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: Once we got beyond just shouting "choo choo!" gleefully 14 times, he enjoyed this. I'm not 100% certain he's connecting the text to the illustrations (getting that the text is describing the train ride), so I'm going to work on that the next time we read it. The illustration style, which really is beautiful, doesn't necessarily lend itself to identifying items on every page (a favorite game of our son's and my trick for engaging him in a book), so he kind of breezes past the middle pages quickly.
Parent's Peeve: The book doesn't appear to be in print any longer, which is a shame, but if you like the sound of it or enjoy a copy from the library, there are plenty of used copies to be had on amazon.com.
"Boxes and cans come in trucks and vans / Unwrap it all for shelves on the wall"
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: Although the illustration style is the same as Window Music, there is more detail to the illustrations here, and every page contains a number of items (house, helicopter, tree, etc.) that pique his interest.
Parent's Peeve: Again, out of print, but plenty of used copies around.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
- Leave a comment explaining how you would use the poster print if you won.
- Blog about the give away and link to Chronicle of an Infant Bibliophile as well as LargeFormatPosters.com - one additional entry.
- Tweet about this giveaway @uprinting with trending topic #giveaway and ask your readers to RT (leave a comment here to let me know) - one additional entry.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Do Lions Live on Lily Pads? (Hardcover), by Melanie Walsh. Our little guy has decided quite determinatively that he will be a "yaya meow meow" (translation: yellow cat) for Halloween, and that Mama will be a black cat, and Dada a "roooooooar" (translation: lion). So when I spotted this playful book on the library shelves, I had to take it home with us. Very bright, simple illustrations of animals (in the wrong locations befitting their kind) pair with questions about their habitats. The book follows a pattern - see excerpt - until the last page. A fun, short book.
"Is this the nest of a goat? / No, it belongs to a bird. / Do crocodiles live in shells? / No, but snails do."
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: I lost count, but I believe we read it approximately 19 times in the first go. All while sitting next to a pile of 7 other new library books. He likes to say "nooooo" as we turn each page to answer the question. I'll be hunting down the other books by this author soon. They include "Do Pigs Have Stripes?," "Do Donkeys Dance?," and "Do Monkeys Tweet?" among others.
Parent's Peeve: I don't like that the lion on the cover isn't actually included in the text of the book. The title page has a picture of a frog, which obviously answers the questions on the front page, but there isn't any text saying that. Still, he didn't seem to mind one bit. He still refers to it as the "roooooar" book when he wants us to read it.
If you enjoy this book, you also should check out our review of Lemons Are Not Red, a longstanding favorite in our house which follows the same sort of quizzing pattern, with the addition of a clever cutout feature.
This one wasn't such a hit, but maybe some of you will love it:
Chicky Chicky Chook Chook (Hardcover), by Cathy MacLennan. I spotted this book on the shelf, and thought the title just screamed "fun read-aloud!" It stars an unlikely trio of animals - chicks, bees, and cats - as they have their peaceful slumber interrupted by a rain storm. The text is all very sing-songy and silly ("Sticky, icky, chicky. Soggy, groggy moggy. Wet. Wet. Wet. / Crazy . . . dizzy . . . buzzer! How will we get DRY?"). If the excerpts appeal to you, you'll probably enjoy the book. The illustrations are fun - quite clear, colorful, and visually appealing as a whole. I wasn't as delighted with reading it aloud as I had hoped.
"Sunny, sunny, hot shine. Snuggle, snuggle, sleepy shine. Lazy . . . dozy. Snoozy . . . woooooozy."
Bookworm's interest at 22 months: He loves cats and bees, which both feature prominently in this book, but he didn't show much interest in it. I'll try a few more times, but I don't think it will become a favorite without some extra effort (for instance, maybe if I try singing the words as lyrics).
What are you reading this week?
Friday, September 18, 2009
Arrr, today is Talk Like a Pirate Day.