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Welcome to Books to Hoot About! the children's book review blog from InfoSoup librarians and users!

Reviews by : Shawano City-County Library

Author: Christie Matheson

This simple book is stunning in its presentation of the life cycle of an apple tree.  Readers are involved with moving the tree through its different stages and seasons-  tap the tree to create more leaves, warm the tree by rubbing it to create blooms, shake the tree to drop the apples along with many other magical actions.  Not to be missed!

Amazing Wonder

Author: R. J. Palacio

For Wonder fans, Mr. Browne's precepts continue on in this quick but powerful read.  The precepts- or principles to live by- were compiled by Mr. Browne; one for each day of the year.  They demonstrate kindness, hopefulness and the goodness of human beings and were derived from the original characters in Wonder, popular songs, children's stories, over 1200 submissions from readers among many other famous people.

Very Magical!

Author: Patrick George

This fun and interactive book demonstrates opposites through a very ingenious way- an acetate transparent page changes sun into rain or hot into cold.  An excellent short read for preschool age children.  The format of the book allows children to take part in learning opposites in a hands-on way.

A Strong Woman

Author: Stone Tanya Lee

This book is a biography of Elizabeth Blackwell, set in picture book format.  It is informative and easy to understand for elementary-aged children.  For older children, the book also includes an author's note giving more comprehensive information on Blackwell.  The well-researched book ends with a list of sources consulted while creating the book.  Children will be surprised at Blackwell's story and her hardships in becoming the first female doctor.  The book is illustrated by Marjorie Priceman (think "Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin!")


This simple book is an extremely creative way to explore colors!  One "see-through" page magically becomes two different images- a green frog is also a brown bear; a chocolate ice cream cone is also an orange sunset.  Children will enjoy flipping through the book, exploring what happens when colors blend together.

Author: Carron Brown

This truly innovative book will be a big hit with kids!  Turn down the lights, grab your flashlight and investigate the life of an apple tree by shining a light behind each page to see what emerges.  From bare branches to insects and critters, children will have fun guessing what will shine through the tree next.

Title: Naked!
Author: Michael Ian Black

Have fun chasing this little boy around the house after his bath- naked!  Mom tries so hard to catch him but the boy can only have fun with being naked dresses him in a cape!  This book is sure to please young boys and girls alike, with many parents being able to relate to the characters.

Rhyming Fun

Author: Patricia Thomas

With a Seuss-ical feel, all the jungle animals beg and plead with Elephant NOT to sneeze because when he better watch out!  The zebra loses his stripes, the alligator's snout turns inside out and monkeys fall from the trees among other crazy events.  It's the teeny tiny mouse that finds a way to keep Elephant from sneezing, however even that has unexpected results.  A great rhyming story that moves along at a great reading pace.

Author: Harriet Ziefert

In the style of "Goodnight Moon," Bear and his six friends get ready for a camp-out, starting with their underwear!  They rhyming rhythm is fun and and moves the story along nicely.  The sparse text and simple illustrations makes this a good choice for younger readers.

Author: Steve Jenkins

The Steve Jenkins and Robin Page duo are at it again with this great story and illustrations about a variety of baby animals' first days.  From kiwis kicking out of their eggs to sea otters dozing on their mothers' belly to sea lion moms and pups calling back and forth to recognize each other's voices, this book is a winner!  As usual, the book ends with a glossary of the animals presented in the book with additional information for those children seeking more details.  Beautifully done.