January Bookshelf

Where’s Baby?

By Anne Hunter

Mama and Papa Fox can’t find Baby so Papa heads out on a search. While kids learn concepts like up, under and around as Papa explores the forests and asks its creatures if they’ve seen baby, they also realize that baby is hiding in clear sight in every scene. The delicate and lovely illustrations with their limited palette highlight the humour of this adorable hide-and-seek tale. Ages 3 to 7 – Publisher, Tundra Books – $21.99 hardcover

 

The Button Book

By Sally Nicholls, illustrator Bethan Woollvin

This book presses all of the right buttons. It teaches colours, it tickles the funny bone, it challenges memory and it provides a visual treat. From a singing button to a tickle button, from a rude sound button to a mysterious white button, there’s only one way to find out what they do. This imaginative book will prompt requests for repeat readings. Ages 3 to 7 – Publisher, Tundra Books – $19.99 hardcover

 

The Reader

By Luciana DeLuca, illustrator Cynthia Alonso

I can’t help but be a fan of a book that encourages reading. This personal bias aside, this is a wonderfully told story of a child who loves to read and extols all of the amazing things that books allow us to explore. The little book lover wakes before her parents and spends some quiet time in their library where she can read all of the books she can reach. Ages 3 to 7 – Publisher, Crocodile Books – $17.95 US hardcover

 

Ella McKeen, Kickball Queen

By Beth Mills

In her debut picture book, Beth Mills offers an insightful look at recess, friendship, and being a good sport. First grader Ella McKeen is the undisputed kickball queen until a new girl named Riya shows up―and shows her up at recess. Ella reveals that she’s a sore loser, throwing a full-blown tantrum and she needs to redeem herself. This relatable story is a great starter for talks about dealing with emotions. Ages 5 to 9 – Publisher, Lerner Books – $24.99 US hardcover

 

The Bug Girl (a true story)

By Sophia Spencer with Margaret Mcnamara, illustrator Kerascoet

Real-life 7-year-old Sophia Spencer was bullied for loving bugs until hundreds of women scientists rallied around her. Now Sophie tells her inspiring story in this picture book that celebrates women in science, bugs of all kinds, and the importance of staying true to yourself. Ages 3 to 7 – Publisher, Schwart & Wade Books –$23.99 hardcover

 

Runaway

By Cordell Barker

Adapted by Sarah Howden

Part of the National Film Board of Canada Collection, the 2009 animated short film has been adapted to print as a graphic novel for young readers. The adventure rolls along as the train’s captain becomes indisposed and there’s no one left to pilot the train. But doesn’t a train usually drive itself? What could possibly go wrong? And with that, the allegorical tale of greed, ignorance and the social cost of self-importance is away. This rollicking and fast-paced comic that is short on dialogue, big on laughs and ends with a bang. Ages 8 to 12 – Publisher, Firefly Books – $19.95 hardcover hardcover

 

Just a Kid

By Rie Charles

At just 95 pages this inspirational novel is ideal for hesitant readers who will be hooked by the characters and the relatable plot. One morning, Meerin Hoy looks out her window to Carson’s Field and notices signs that declaring the land is being developed. The nine-year-old is determined preserve the neighbourhood’s beloved green space. With movements occurring in many parts of the world today, this is a timely novel for young readers to learn about the possibilities of influencing the adult world, even when it seems no one wants to listen. Ages 7 to 9 – Publisher, Red Deer Press – $12.95 paperback

 

I,Cosmo

By Carlie Sorosiak

Pet owners talk to their pets. Some even speak for them and give voice to their imagined thoughts. In this novel, the dog’s voice and thoughts drive the story that is narrated by Cosmo, a devoted golden retriever. His humour colours this heart-tugging tale of a dog working to keep his human pack together during a tumultuous year. Cosmo is everything you’d want a dog to be and more and his story is a love letter to dogs. Always a worry for me when reading stories about pets is whether or not the pet survives. No worries with this story, even though Cosmo is an old boy. Ages 8 to 12 – Publisher, Candlewick Press – $16.99 US hardcover

 

The Plastic Problem

By Rachel Salt

Subtitled “The shocking truth of plastic’s impact on our planet — and what we can do about it”, the simple and transformative book examines a major problem and provides some hope. As a producer for the popular award-winning YouTube channel AsapSCIENCE, Salt is accustomed to taking big, complicated concepts and translating them into entertaining and easy-to-understand segments. She does that with this critically important book that will change the lives of those who read it.  All ages – Publisher, Firefly – $12.95 paperback