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May 26, 2014

Chapter Picturebooks

There are a handful of picturebooks out there that serve as a go-between for picturebooks and early readers. Let's call them Chapter Picturebooks--they look and feel like picturebooks (same size, layout, etc.), but they have multiple chapters that break up the narrative like early readers. It's fun because you get more of the story, and the early reader appearance helps child readers feel more accomplished by the end of the book (a whole chapter book!).

First on today's list is Hooray for Amanda and Her Alligator by the ever popular Mo Willems. The book features 6 1/2 chapters about Amanda and her stuffed animal bestie Alligator. But when Amanda brings home another stuffed animal, jealousy colors their friendship. I believe it's one of Willems' better books, with textual and visual whimsy that makes the book an excellent read aloud.

The Big Bad Wolf Goes on Vacation (sequel to The Big Bad Wolf and Me) by Delphine Perret is next. The Big Bad Wolf, Louis, and Louis' grandpa go on a car adventure to the beach, making all sorts of stops at the request of The Big Bad Wolf. The tone of the book is a little darker, more sardonic--Louis is well aware of the burden he carries with The Big Bad Wolf for a best friend--but the illustrations, as well as the hijinks the threesome get into, make the book a super fun read.

Finally, we have Odd Duck by Cecil Castellucci and Sara Varon. Theodora has always been a bit of a loner, so when a new duck moves into the abandoned house next door, Theodora takes care to steer clear. But her new neighbor Chad isn't keen to let a potential friendship slip by, and eventually Theodora realizes that she and Chad have more in common than she thought. I really enjoyed this book--I thought the pacing was pretty spot-on, and the illustrations, though not exemplary, are very active.

Super cute interior cover

See you next week!!


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