Saturday, May 9, 2015

Hermelin, the mouse detective as told to Mini Grey

A mouse named Hermelin can read and write. He uses these special powers to solve mysteries such as missing fish, glasses, and pearls on his dense city street. He even saves a baby! But when the people throw a party at the corner sausage shop to thank him, they are shocked that a vermin mouse shows up. This causes Hermelin to realize that he is a pest, which hurts his feelings. Fortunately, a little girl who lives on the block, a bit of a detective herself, figure out that Hermelin has been solving the neighhorhood crimes and invites him to be her friend and partner detective.

I love this book's depiction of city living and close neighborhoods. The illustrations are also fantastic, and the narrative fun.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

The Man in the Moon by William Joyce

We've attempted this book a couple times now. At first, my daughter said it was too scary. The part where the adoring parents die is upsetting. But the artwork is beautiful, and the story romantic. The Man in the Moon is the guardian of childhood, and the actual moon is the children's nightlight to ward off nightmares.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

a bus called heaven by Bob Graham

As a city planner with a grassroots leaning, this book is the type I want my daughter to remember from her childhood. A bus is abandoned in the neighborhood, and people turn it into a sort of community center. It hosts parties and meetings and other rendezvous. But it's blocking the sidewalk and gets towed away. They get it back and park it in the vacant lot behind their house.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Cat and Fish illustrated by Neil Curtis and written by Joan Grant

Cat and Fish are unlikely friends. This book describes how their relationship begins in sweet words and stunningly beautiful images. I wish I had created these images. I've held on to this gorgeous book from the library for far too long.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Crazy Hair by Gaiman and McKean

My daughter worried this one would be too scary too. It depends on your perspective. The artwork combines images of real hair with drawings, and I dig it. The words are a sort of rhyme poem. The story is ... unusual. Unusual enough that I both want to blog about it, but also don't want to give it away.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Frog Belly Rat Bone by Timothy Basil Ering

Initially, I was drawn to the art, and my daughter was turned off by it. She was afraid the story would be scary. When she finally let me read it to her, she told me she had looked at it on her own and realized that it isn't scary. The artwork is dark and weird. The words displayed in odd lettering. It is the story of a little boy seeking treasures in Cementland. I am always a little sensitive about cities being depicted as bleek, but sometimes they are. I agree with the book about the goodness of friendship and plants.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Wild Berries by Julie Flett

This is another just beautiful book where the artwork takes my breath away. A little boy and his grandma pick berries in the forest. Some words are also provided in the Cree language.