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MADreads for Kids

Book reviews for children by library staff and guest contributors

A Fur-ever Family

Cover of Can I be your Dog?
A review of Can I be your Dog? by Troy Cummings

Arfy really wants his “fur-ever” home. He invites himself politely via mail to every resident on Butternut Street. Each invitee declines Arfy’s offer of being their dog.  Just when Arfy thinks he’s stuck in the leaky cardboard box at the end of the alley forever, he receives a letter. The mail carrier on Butternut Street is in need of a friend. Would Arfy be interested in having her as his person? Joy ensues as Arfy jubilantly accepts. The illustrations are the real treat of this story. They are large, bright and full of emotion. Kids will cheer with Arfy as his dream comes true.

May 10, 2019

Children in Chennai

Cover of The Bridge Home
A review of The Bridge Home by Padma Venkatraman
Eleven year old Viji and her younger sister Rukku flee their abusive father and arrive in Chennai (India) all alone.  Life on the streets is harsh and dangerous.  The girls form a friendship with two boys living in similar circumstances.  With Muthu and Arul, they make a shelter on an abandoned bridge.  Together, the four children look for work, share resources, and become a family to each other.  They even adopt a stray dog - Kutti, the best dog ever.  One night they are forced from their bridge and take up shelter in a cemetery.  There Rukku and Muthu fall ill.
May 6, 2019

I Talk to You, and You Talk to Me

Cover of Baby Talk
A review of Baby Talk by Stella Blackstone

This book is full of close-ups of a variety of baby/parent experiences – with babies and parents playing, singing, cuddling, holding, reading and more.  The text is so simple, yet it reveals so much about quality time with baby and how to help baby develop language skills and learn about what’s known as the “serve and return” of conversation. “I love you, and you love me. I talk to you, and you talk to me.”  This is definitely a highly recommended choice.

Apr 11, 2019

A child’s celebration of a Muslim tradition

Cover of Mommy’s Khimar
A review of Mommy’s Khimar by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow

A young girl revels in the many khimars (also sometimes called hijabs) in her mother’s closet. She loves the colors, the fancy decorations, and all of the possibilities for play.  She dresses up in a yellow khimar and imagines herself a queen, a bird and a superhero! She loves the cozy comfort of the smells of her mother lingering in the khimar. In clear, simple language, this "own voices" book shares one aspect of the everyday life of a Muslim family. Whether your family is Muslim or has never heard the word “khimar” this book is a perfect bedtime read.

 

Mar 28, 2019

Bedtime for brave boys

Cover of Night Knight
A review of Night Knight by Owen Davey

A wonderfully illustrated book about going to bed! Owen Davey has given us a great little story about a boy who imagines he is a knight as he is doing his nightly, or should we say knightly routine. This fun mix of dragons, castles, baths, and beds makes for a great nighttime tale.

Mar 15, 2019

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Mar 8, 2019

Clucky Birthday!

Cover of I Got a Chicken for my Bir
A review of I Got a Chicken for my Birthday by Laura Gehl

Ana asked her Abuela Lola (3 times!) for tickets to the amusement park for her birthday, but all she got was a chicken. Lucky for Ana… it isn’t any ordinary chicken. Her chicken isn’t interested in normal chicken things like laying eggs or pecking at chicken feed. Oh no! This chicken has PLANS. It has a list. It has blueprints. It has a bulldozer. This hysterical story told in simple sentences, brilliant illustrations, and funny little side notes “Sorry, no time for cake!” will keep you and your little one giggling over and over.

Feb 22, 2019

Welcome back, Carmen Sandiego

Cover of Who in the World is Carmen
A review of Who in the World is Carmen Sandiego? by Rebecca Tinker

I loved playing Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? a computer game created in 1985 by the American software company Broderbund. The game was originally classified as a "mystery exploration" series but became one of the first edutainment programs used in schools. I was introduced to the game as a 5.25-inch floppy disc for the Apple II. It was used in the computer lab when I was a student, to teach kids how to install computer programs and to build typing and mouse skills. I credit most of my knowledge of geography and capital cities of the world to this excellent game. 

Feb 21, 2019

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