Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Monarch Update

Here are a few more Monarch nominees to add to the list.

Chicken Big 
Chicken Big by Keith Graves
The humor in this picture book is hilarious.  When a “humongous” chicken pops out of her enormous egg the other chicken don’t know what to make of him. He is just so big; certainly, it cannot be a chicken…maybe an elephant, a giant squirrel, or an umbrella. Whatever this thing is it is not a cute little chicken, but little by little everyone in the coop starts to love him.  Our giant chicken uses settle humor to deal with her fellow chickens as they “run for their lives” every time something new happens.  The greyish background brings our chickens closer to us and the text bubbles help us discern each chicken’s personality. 

Say Hello to Zorro!

Say Hello to Zorro! by Carter Goodrich.
Mister Bud is a happy dog. He has everything right the way he likes it- his naps, his toys, his dish, his own bed, and his perfect schedule. That is until Zorro arrives. This little pug has different ideas about Mr. Bud’s schedule and trouble soon follows. Until they realize that they something in common, they have the same schedule! Double the fun for this pair of mismatched dogs.  Goodrich illustrations make this book perfect. The settle looks between Mr. Bud and Zorro, the rised eyebrows, Zorro’s fierce look, the easy colors creating snapshots of their home all create the perfect reading experience.

Clever Jack Takes the Cake

Clever Jack Takes the Cake by Candace Fleming, illustrated by G. Brian Karas.
These are two of my favorite author & illustrator working together to tell a beautiful story about a boy’s quest to deliver the perfect birthday present. Jack finds himself in a tough spot when he is invited to the princess 10th birthday party and has no means to bring her a present.  Don’t despair, Jack is clever boy and he figures a way to make the perfect present for her royal majesty. But on his way  to the castle he  encounters all sorts of challenges and his perfect present is no longer so. Will he save the moment?  A must read.  I love the soft tone of the illustrations, the little details, and eager expressions. The illustrations layout follows the text leading us down the path to the castle. The text is succulent and musical, engaging the reader and listener alike. 

This is a unique book telling the story of Tony Sarg, the boy who grew up to become the puppeteer of Macy’s parade. I found Tony’s life fascinating, his creativity and ingenuity were amazing.  The artwork in this book is unique as well with Sweet's carefully created collages using different materials, illustrations, photographs, and even toys and puppets she created during her research.  The book includes a nice bibliography and sources section as well as personal notes from Sarg's family.