It’s Monday and I’m happy to be participating in a weekly event with a community of bloggers who post reviews of books that they have read the previous week. Check out more IMWAYR posts here: Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers
I am fortunate to receive books every spring and fall to read and review from Kids Can Press, the largest Canadian-owned children’s publisher in the world. It is like Christmas in my house when these boxes arrive! This week, I’m excited (and proud!) to highlight some of my favorite new releases from our amazing Canadian authors and illustrators that arrived on my front porch last week! Please note that many of these titles have not yet been released but most will be available early April and can be pre-ordered.
Toshi’s Little Treasures – Nadine Robert
Sigh. I love this book. Love it enough to want to make pajamas out of it and wear it to bed every night. It is a unique search-and-find informational picture book about a little boy named Toshi and his grandmother. Together, they explore six of their favorite places — the riverbank, the town, the forest, the country, the park and the beach. At each location, Toshi finds treasures to add to his collection. After you find the treasures with Toshi, there is a matching activity on the next page for Toshi to figure out where the treasures came from. There are SO many teachable moments in this book! Interactive + thinking = a winner!
The Storm – Akiko Miyakoshi
A young boy, excited to go to the beach, is disappointed when a big storm approaches and possibly ruins his plans. That night, as his parents prepare for the storm, the boy listens to the sound of the rain and dreams an imaginary dream to try to drive the storm away. This book has minimal text but the story is told mostly through the amazing charcoal drawings, which set the tone of gloominess and fear as the storm approaches. This would make an excellent read-aloud book for practicing making connections.
Life Without Nico – Andrea Maturana
Simple, poignant story about two best friends having to cope with parting ways when one must move away. Translated from Spanish, originally published in Mexico. I like how the book deals with not only the sadness when a friend moves, but how to “fill up the spaces” and what happens when the friend returns. Lots of emotions here to connect to and charming illustrations.
The Not-So-Faraway Adventure – Andrew Larsen
My dear teacher and blogger friend Carrie Gelson (There’s a Book For That) has a fondness for books that highlight inter-generational relationships so I immediately thought of her when I read this book! It is an endearing story of a girl and her grandfather doing something special together. I loved the message that it is not necessary to leave home for an adventure. Great mixed-media illustrations. This book would make a great anchor for writing about adventures with grandparents.
Manners are Not For Monkeys – Heather Tekavec
Hilarious story that turns “good” and “bad” manners on it’s head! Children behaving like monkeys and monkeys behaving like children! This one will be sure to get a lot of laughs from both the story and the silly illustrations and also be a good discussion starter about manners with the younger ones.
Mr. King’s Machine – Geneviève Côté
There aren’t many books for younger students that focus on environmental issues in a simple, accessible way. This is the third book in Geneviève Côté’s wonderful picture book series about a crown-wearing cat who, with a little help from his friends, learns important environmental lessons. This book focuses on air pollution and would be a great book to begin a discussion on the environment with early primary students. The two other books in this series are Mr. King’s Things (impact of pollution and over-consumption) and Mr. King’s Castle (environmental stewardship and reducing your footprint)
Willow’s Smile – Lana Button
This book is a perfect book to share with students just before picture day! (Great connections!) Willow has a beautiful smile but she is shy and doesn’t always smile when she should. Lovely message encouraging you to be yourself and about having a good self image. I have enjoyed the other Willow books, but I think this is my favorite!
Fluffy Strikes Back – Ashley Spires
This is a fun graphic novel about a group of pets, led by Fluffy the cat, who try to rid the world of aliens (bugs). It is an apparent “spin-off” of s is a spin-off from the successful Binky series. This book is filled with dry wit and slapstick tones, (along with the occasional bathroom break!) but with important underlying themes of courage, determination and taking responsibility. A great graphic novel for early readers.
Feathered – Deborah Kerbel
Wow. This book caught me by surprise, sucked me in and wouldn’t let go. Powerful, sad middle-grade novel about an eleven year old girl named Finch who endures the recent death of her father, the depression of her mother, the nasty friend of her brother, the meanest teacher in the school and nasty-girl bullying. When a new family from India moves next door, Finch begins to find a friend and a find a purpose. This book tackles so many issues facing adolescent girls and would be an excellent book for discussions on loss, bullying, mental health, learning difficulties. It is powerful, compelling, raw, and you will not be able to stop reading it. Right up there with The Thing About Jellyfish and Reign Rain.
Thanks for stopping by! Which Kids Can Press book has caught your eye?