MADreads for Kids

A review of Hansel & Gretel : a Toon graphic by Neil Gaiman

Any fans of Neil Gaiman should probably check this out. It's the standard story of Hansel and Gretel, the woodcutter's children who are left in the woods when then the family is hit by hard times. One night Hansel hears his parents, worried over their lack of food, discuss leaving him and his sister in the woods. Being resourceful and forewarned, Hansel uses whites stones to guide the pair back to the arms of their parents. However, there is still not enough food and again they are led off into more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
August 7, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of The Monkey goes bananas by C.P. Bloom

This is a fresh look at the conundrum of the monkey on an island who has a yen for the bunch of bananas hanging from a tree on another island, separated by water, and a hungry predator, in this case, a shark.  Bloom and Raymundo have created a story with just a few words, and highly expressive, cartoon-style illustrations.  Monkey tries various methods to reach the bananas, or make the bananas reach him, and is foiled again and again, in progressively more dramatic and hilarious ways more

Reviewed by Karen on
July 31, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Pennyroyal Academy by M.A. Larson

Okay, I admit it, I picked this one for the cover, but can you blame me?  With the rearing dragon, the perfect castle right out of Disneyland and the witch silhouettes sneaking up the mountains, this book promised some major excitement.  But, wow, did it deliver!  With a few sly nods to traditional princess tales, M.A. Larson's Pennyroyal Academy boldly lays claim to fresh fairytale territory where behavior trumps birth, what you don't know can kill you, and where the strength, more

Reviewed by Abby on
July 31, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Better Nate than ever by Tim Federle

Sitting in his first Broadway audition, Nate realizes it’s better to be simple and honest, “SPECIAL SKILLS: I thought a pirouette was a pasty, before this audition, and if that’s any indication of how much I could learn in New York, I hope I have a chance to live here…” Tim Federle’s Nate is a dreamer, a big dreamer on a big adventure in New York City. In Nate we find a character who refuses to settle for being anything less than his fabulous self, even if that self doesn’t fit into his small more

Reviewed by Carissa - Alicia Ashman on
July 17, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Naked! by Michael Ian Black

You might know Michael Ian Black as a comedian and actor, but he also writes children’s books, including this picture book about the benefits and detriments of running around totally naked.  Don’t worry--this is totally-safe-for-work, and fun-for-kids kind of nudity, with bold, strategic illustrations by Debbie Ridpath Ohi, showing the freedom of nudity balanced with the upside of clothing: the dynamism that comes with wearing a cape for example, not to mention protection from the elements more

Reviewed by Carra on
July 9, 2015 | 1 comment
A review of Spots in a Box by Helen Ward

What’s a guinea fowl to do with no spots? Ask for some, of course! In Spots in a Box by Helen Ward (Candlewick Press, 2015), a spotless bird writes a letter requesting some spots. He gets big spots, and little spots, bright spots, and connect-the-dot spots, fancy spots, and - even - not-spots! The humorous illustrations are a perfect combination to the words. The reader sees the guinea fowl try out all sorts of spots – with cardboard boxes, colorful dots, and packaging materials scattered more

Reviewed by Tracy on
July 3, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Bee and Puppycat. Volume 1 by Natasha Allegri

This graphic novel is a collection of the first four Bee and Puppycat comic books created by Natashi Allegri. The comics are based on a Cartoon Hangover animated series on YouTube. Each episode is a little over 6 minutes long and it's all adorable, adorable, adorable. If you are not familiar with kawaii - this is it. It's the phenomenon of cuteness in Japanese culture and Bee and Puppycat more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
June 30, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of One big pair of underwear by Laura Gehl

I have read a lot of counting books, but One Big Pair Of Underwear is something so much more. Don't be distracted by the obviously silly title, or hysterical pictures of bears tugging on giant tighty-whitey or seals on scooters... this book is a just using those adorable and humorous entities to distract you from realizing it is a vocabulary book. Like it's nursery rhyme ancestors did so well, this children's rhyme sneaks in rare words like greedy, gobble, narrow, nook, craving, twisty into it' more

Reviewed by Carissa - Alicia Ashman on
June 26, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Sidewalk Flowers by JonArno Smith

This is a lovely, totally wordless picture book about beauty in unexpected places. A little girl experiences a city walk she’s on with her father in a totally different way, noticing and carefully harvesting the beautiful flowers that grow in the cracks of the sidewalk. As her bouquet grows, she also notices potential recipients for her tiny beauties. The flowers serve as a funeral bouquet for a bird, decorations for a napping man’s shoe, and ornaments for her mother’s hair. Mostly black-and- more

Reviewed by Carra on
June 8, 2015 | 1 comment
A review of Shipwreck Island by S.A. Bodeen

Nothing about her dad's second marriage is good news for Sarah Robinson --  not her new, beautiful step-mother; her move from Texas to California; and especially not her new step-brothers, Marco and Nacho. Sarah's parents think that a family vacation on a chartered boat will help the family bond, but when a storm destroys their boat and strands them on a mysterious island, surviving becomes their number one priority. With lots of action, suspense, and creepy creatures, Shipwreck Island is more

Reviewed by Krissy on
June 5, 2015 | 0 comments