Thursday, June 15, 2006


WHY DO YOU CRY? by Kate and M. Sarah Klise (Henry Holt)

In order to attend Little Rabbit’s grown-up birthday party, you can’t cry. This leaves out the squirrel, who cries when he is left out of games. This leaves out the cat, who is afraid of the tall shadows on the alley wall. This leaves out the horse who cries (like many of us) when he has a bad day at the hairstylist. But when Little Rabbit’s criteria leaves out his sentimental mother, he decides maybe he’s been a little too stringent. This very dear story reminiscent of Charlotte Zolotow’s early work might have you shedding a tender tear, or just marveling at the matte illustrations brimming with clever detail. The creative team behind one of my favorite novels for teaching letter-writing, REGARDING THE FOUNTAIN (9 and up), these sisters are so talented I could cry, and eagerly await any and all of their offerings. (4 and up)

Also of interest:
WHAT ARE YOU SO GRUMPY ABOUT? by Tom Lichtenheld (Little,Brown) is an empathetic exploration of what gets kids' goats, from the dreaded gravy touching peas to the even worse case cenario of a sibling touching anything at all. Full of cartoon illustrations, snarky sidelines and endpapers with helpful "Sure Cures for Grumpiness," his book is funny, funny, funny, and I mean the rare kind of funny that comes from being true. The author polled over a hundred children in order to create this book, and that's why it hits its mark dead-on. Fans of Dav Pilkey will love this book. (5 and up)

If you are looking for a wonderful guest author for a school visit, please do consider Tom Lichtenheld; I had the pleasure of meeting him in person over the weekend and seeing him in action for the first time. Sharing the stage with bestselling (and equally swashbuckling) author Carolyn Crimi, he rocked the boat with Everything I Know About Pirates at a Pirate Party at the PlanetEsme Bookroom. Children were actually screaming with laughter and delight, and he did an amazing job creating a collaborative illustration with the help of every child in the room. Here is a picture of him giving a pirate's "aaaargh!" for the camera with an enthusiastic young buccaneer.

Links are provided for informational use. Don't forget to support your local bookseller.


Anonymous said...

I love Regarding the Fountain! Your mentioned of it reminds me to recommend it to some of my fifth graders this summer. And the grumpy book, boy howdy, we need that this last week of school. Something to make us laugh. Lots of studnets at my school are acting out because their daily routine is ending as we move into summer break.
Happy Reading,

Anonymous said...


now you're makin' ME cry! and, no, i was NOT googling myself. i read your page on an almost daily basis. both kate and i adore YOUR work and are fellow (fella?) illinoians (peoria). keep doing what you're doing - and next time you're in berkeley, let's have lunch!

sarah klise


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