MADreads for Kids

A review of Thunder Boy Jr. by Sherman Alexie

A fun story about names, family, and finding your own place in the world, Thunder Boy Jr. by Sherman Alexie (Little, Brown and Company, 2016) tells a refreshing story paired with beautiful, full page illustrations. Thunder Boy is named after his father – Big Thunder. He loves his dad, but he wants his own name – a name that says something unique about him. Little Thunder thinks of some possibilities . . . he likes playing in dirt, so maybe his name should be “Mud in His Ears” . . . but he also ...read more

Reviewed by Tracy on
September 30, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of The Slowest Book Ever by April Pulley Sayre

Without reading ahead, what would you guess is the heaviest living thing on the planet?  Would you guess an elephant? A blue whale? Maybe a giant squid? I was surprised to discover that by weight, giant sequoia trees are the biggest thing on Earth.  Giant Sequoias live for about 3,000 years, and at maturity can weigh 2.7 million pounds, as much as eleven full grown blue whales.  Focusing on nature and natural processes, Pulley Sayre invites readers to slow down and learn all ...read more

Reviewed by Karen on
September 23, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Cleopatra in Space: Target Practice by Mike Maihack

Imagine a precocious young Cleopatra sneaking away from her royal tutor to hang with her pal amidst the Egyptian pyramids. She's having a great time playing hooky when she unexpectedly gets teleported to a future time where she's considered to be the savior of the galaxy. Her education now includes combat training and stun gun target practice and her assignments require flying secret missions on a Sphinx hover craft.  The world building in this series is AWESOME. The instructors at Yasiro ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
September 9, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Spot the Cat by Henry Cole

Spot is a cat with a large spot on his back. When Spot sees a bird outside, he leaps out of the apartment window to chase it. Follow his adventures (and the boy who's looking for him) in this wordless picture book. Let's see if you can spot the boy and Spot, the cat, on the intricately-detailed pages. This is a great book for fans of the "Can You See What I See" books by Walter Wick, "I Spy" book series, "Where's Waldo" series, and other picture puzzles. ...read more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
August 26, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of The Gallery by Laura Marx Fitzgerald

It’s 1929 in NYC, and Martha O’Doyle is convinced there is nothing worse than school. When she gets on her teacher’s last nerve and is expelled, she goes to work with her mother as a maid in a wealthy newspaper magnate’s posh home. Turns out she was wrong. It doesn’t take long for Martha to find some intrigue between all the washing and cleaning and potato peeling. It turns out the master of the house’s wife, Rose, is a recluse. She hasn’t left her bedroom in years. The word around the house, ...read more

Reviewed by Beth on
August 23, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Fly Guy presents Bats by Tedd Arnold

For fans of Tedd Arnold’s Fly Guy series, the author has now come out with a series of high-interest non-fiction books.  Bats is filled with some great, general information about bats, lots of quality photographs of different species of bats, and some fast facts about particular species of bats.  This is all wrapped up in a Beginning Reader format which will be great for kids who have experience sounding out words or as a read-with experience with a favorite adult, as the book ...read more

Reviewed by Karen on
August 19, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Six Kids and a Stuffed Cat by Gary Paulsen

What would happen if six very different middle school kids were still in the building after school and a storm blew through?  Well, Jordan, Devon, Mason, Taylor, Regan and Avery are about to find out.  The RJ Glavine Middle School students are thrown together by a, perhaps too cautious, school order to seek safety - which they find in the school bathroom.   The kids have some fun, telling jokes and making the stuffed cat into a mummy.  But mostly, they talk to each ...read more

Reviewed by Jennifer on
August 5, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Through the town by Craig Shuttlewood

All board books are not created for baby’s first year.  Sometimes picture books simply get put into board book format because they are popular as picture books.  But for parents of toddlers, the 14 month-olds to 3 year-olds, some of these board books are great. Through the Town is one of these and really hits the sweet spot.  Very young children can trace the tactile, thick line provided through the book to develop the muscles in their eyes, to learn that when we read in English ...read more

Reviewed by Karen on
July 29, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Hippopotamister by John Green

Red Panda and Hippopotamus are languishing in a dilapidated city zoo when Red Panda decides to leave and find work amongst the humans. He comes back from time to time impressing the hippopotamus with his many careers. Hippo decides to join Red Panda on the outside and becomes Hippopotamister. And so begins a cycle of trying on new jobs and just as quickly having to leave them.  This is a sweet story of recognizing your true talents and celebrating each other for who you really are. The ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
July 28, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of The Mixed-Up Truck by Stephen Savage

Cement mixer is new to the construction biz and gets his wires crossed.  The other trucks ask him to mix up some powdery white cement for the project.  Cement mixer proceeds to mix up powdery white flour, then some powdery white sugar.  Voila! He makes a cake!  But the trucks keep advising cement mixer, who finally gets just the right ingredients for a building.  Savage’s simple shapes and flat colors are perfect for the very youngest truck enthusiasts. But don’t be ...read more

Reviewed by Karen on
July 22, 2016 | 0 comments