The book I selected this week is one of those books. And the writing, the illustrations, the entire package is masterfully done!
I had read one of the author's other titles, Bedtime Monsters, and liked it but it didn't take me to the computer in a 'have to recommend it moment' like this one. My library doesn't have a copy of his Geisel award winning book (gasp, I know) so I am now on the hunt for that.
Publisher: Clarion Books, 2014
Intended Age: 4-8
Themes: This book has so many layers, it's hard to pigeonhole it.
I'm going to grit my teeth and say: Toys, Accidents, Pets
Opening lines: Amelia and Princess Sparkle-Heart were best friends.
GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR (more R's in the original)
Synopsis: A girl's dog is jealous of the girl's new doll.
What I like about this book: SPOILER ALERT-the beauty of this book is hard to talk about without giving away the ending. So, if you don't want to know what happens, don't read. The cover kind-of gives it away . . . .
The story begins on the title page, and continues on the dedication page before you get to the start of the text. The story might seem to begin abruptly if you don't see those illustrations. Perhaps recognizing a bit of myself, I loved the combination of the shoeless girl in overalls and the girly princess doll. (and the girl's crazy fly-away hair although mine was never red!)
|The gutter isn't "scary" black in real life
Houghton Mifflin, the parent company of publisher Clarion Books, provides an activity page for making your own Princess Sparkle-Heart. I think this is a great way to preserve pieces of outgrown favorite clothing. I made a patchwork bedspread with favorite clothing scraps when I was in 8th grade, and I smile when I recognize the events it represents. Of course, I actually sewed some of my clothing (why I looked so rag-tag!) and sewed clothing for Barbie and trolls and . . .so it helps if you are a sewer to begin with.
For writers/illustrators, Josh doesn't seem to have a website--too busy winning awards--but Houghton Mifflin has a nice author interview and view at his creative process here.
For kids, talk about which toys they'd invite to a tea party and why. Then have a party--YUM!
Talk about taking care of your toys. What can be fixed and what can't? Repair or donate some of the toys at home.
Read the Kirkus review here.
This review is part of PPBF (perfect picture book Friday) where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's site. Along with tons of writing wisdom, she keeps an ever-growing list of Perfect Picture Books. #PPBF
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