Mr. Pine’s Purple House

“Mr. Pine lived on Vine Street in a little white house.” Which was fine. But there were fifty identical white houses on Vine Street. Mr. Pine just wanted to be able to tell which house was his. He has an idea! He plants a little pine tree in his front yard so his house will…

The Pickle Chiffon Pie Olympics

About ten years ago, Jill Morgan was working with Roger Bradfield on the republishing of Pickle-Chiffon Pie. In one of his letters to her, he sent Jill a few pages of creative scribbling. Jill enjoyed those pages and tucked them away in a drawer. A few years later, Jill found the pages and sent them back…

Giants Come In Different Sizes

In 2018, Jill Morgan of Purple House Press sent me a few of her favorite picture books for review. I appreciated the beauty and timelessness of Miss Jaster’s Garden and have since given it as a baby gift. I truly enjoyed the sweet and relatable Alexander, and recommend it to mamas of littles who have…

After the Sun Goes Down

From 1953 to 1973, Glenn Blough and Jeanne Bendick collaborated on 14 delightful nature books for children. Blough, an educator and leader in children’s science education, wrote these informative, but also delightful science books for young readers so that children would become more curious about the natural world and feel more connected to it. Jeanne…

Who Lives In This Meadow

From 1953 to 1973, Glenn Blough and Jeanne Bendick collaborated on 14 delightful nature books for children. Blough, an educator and leader in children’s science education, wrote these informative, but also delightful science books for young readers so that children would become more curious about the natural world and feel more connected to it. Jeanne…

Ostriches

I have seen ostriches at the zoo, and I remember learning about them in elementary school, but I don’t remember ever being impressed by them or even caring about them. In fact, what I knew about ostriches before reading this fascinating book by Herbert Zim could be summed up in just a few facts: ostriches…

Buzztail and Leaper

In my review of Here Come the Bears, I explained how delighted I was that Purple House Press is actively working to bring the Alice Goudey books back into print. These charming and scientifically accurate books are written for young readers, but are fascinating to the child at heart in all of us. Alice Goudey…

Here Come the Bears

Listen Now: Years ago, a dear friend mentioned that she was collecting as many of the Alice Goudey books as she could find. She has the very best taste in books and she thought that they were charming and explained scientific ideas to children in a timeless and friendly way that is so rarely replicated…

A Blizzard Year

I don’t recall how I acquired A Blizzard Year. It’s a very interesting little book that could have belonged to one of my children once upon a time, or I may have picked it up at the library book sale. No matter, I have had it a while, and picked it up on a whim…

Miss Moore Thought Otherwise

I recently started off on a rabbit trail that leads back through prominent librarians of the 20th Century to the first women librarians in America. These women were influential in shaping ideas about the kinds of books that should be written for children. Many of them resorted to writing children’s books themselves.   While sorting…

Stick

Stick is another of my serendipitous library finds. The little frog on the first page is so cute I couldn’t resist taking him home. I assumed, from the first page, that the story wasn’t going to be terribly original.   We all know this story. The young frog is going to insist on doing things…

I’d Know You Anywhere

I’d Know You Anywhere, My Love by Nancy Tillman There are things about you quite unlike any other . . . Things always known by your father or mother. So if you decide to be different one day, No worries . . . I’d know you anyway. The things people throw away! I picked up…

Amos and Boris

I enjoyed William Steig’s Sylvester and the Magic Pebble years ago, but not so much that I set out to find everything Steig had written. More recently, I read Dr. De Soto and didn’t love it.  I also remember feeling that the cover of The Amazing Bone is a bit creepy; flashbacks to childhood nightmares…

A Fly Went By

A Fly Went ByBy Mike McClintockIllustrated by Fritz Siebel A Fly Went By is another old (1958) favorite picture book in the “I Can Read It All By Myself” series.  I loved reading it all by myself when I was learning to read. My kids loved it, and now I’m using it with my students…