Category Archives: Staff Picks

Staff Pick: enormous SMALLNESS

Staff Pick: enormous SMALLNESS

Enormous Smallness

Enormous Smallness is a nonfiction picture book about the poet E. E. Cummings. Here E.E.’s life is presented in a way that will make children curious about him and will lead them to play with words and ask plenty of questions as well. Lively and informative, the book also presents some of Cummings’s most wonderful poems, integrating them seamlessly into the story to give the reader the music of his voice and a spirited, sensitive introduction to his poetry.

“This book proves that the old saying “Good things come in small packages” is true. Edward Estlin Cummings became one of the great poets of our country by writing small, short poems which celebrate the everyday pleasures in life – birds, snowflakes, and even grasshoppers. His ability to write poetry showed at an early age as his mother wrote down his first poem when he was only three! Later he chose to use only small letters when writing poetry and signing his name. Even if you aren’t a reader of biographies, you will find this small biography enjoyable, fascinating, and candy for the eyes. Nonfiction with ZING!”

Recommended by: Cindy Childers – Garfield Park Branch Library

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Staff Pick: A Time To Be Brave

Staff Pick: A Time To Be Brave

A Time To Be Brave

David and his family live in Denmark during the Nazi occupation, until September 1943 when their neighbors help smuggle them to Sweden to escape Hitler’s orders to send the Danish Jews to concentration camps. Includes honey cake recipe, World War II timeline, and “the story behind the story.”

“History’s lessons are often dark. How do we introduce children to them sensitively? Books like A Time to Be Brave come to the rescue. Young David is a baker’s son in Copenhagen in 1943. As blackout drapes replace his curtains and chicory replaces coffee, David learns that the goose-stepping soldiers occupying his town are to be feared. David witnesses bravery and strength in everyone from King Christian X to his sister, his teacher and ultimately, himself.”

Recommended by: Daniell Wilkins, College Avenue Library

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Staff Pick: Hi, Koo!: a Year of Seasons

Staff Pick: Hi, Koo!: a Year of Seasons

Hi, Koo!: a Year of Seasons

Jon J Muth–and his delightful little panda bear, Koo–challenge readers to stretch their minds and imaginations with twenty-six haikus about the four seasons.

“Poetry is fun, especially with it isn’t so full of words that you can’t understand what the poet is talking about. These poems are all very short and a great way to get you to think about your favorite parts of every season. All you have to do is open up this book and read the one on that page and you will be hooked.”

Recommended by: Cathy Scheib, Wayne Branch Library

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Staff Pick: Fairy Tale Feasts, a Literary Cookbook for Young Readers & Eaters

Staff Pick: Fairy Tale Feasts, a Literary Cookbook for Young Readers & Eaters

Fairy Tale Feasts

Entertaining retellings of favorite fairy tales and a number of recipes for dishes that children can prepare for themselves.

“Did you know that some fairy tales travel across the world? Cinderella’s story has as many as 500 variations in just Europe! Did you know that apples and pears belong in the rose family? This collection of fairy tales includes facts not otherwise found in other retellings; facts about fairytales and food are included in this book! Additionally, there are easy to make recipes following each tale. The Little Mermaid (retold by Yolen) is followed with “Seaweed Stuffed Shells” with spinach as seaweed. With stories grouped by meal type, one can whip up breakfast with The Runaway Pancake, lunch, soups (Stone Soup, of course), dinners, and desserts.”

Recommended by: Mollie Beaumont, Glendale Library

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Staff Pick: Awful Ogre Running Wild

Staff Pick: Awful Ogre Running Wild

Awful Ogre Running Wild

For Awful Ogre, the coming of summer offers opportunities to get outside and swim, visit a favorite hotel, and climb an isolated mountain. Throughout this set of whimsical poems, youngsters will be entertained not only by Awful Ogre’s actions but also by the rhythm of the poetry.

“Awful Ogre Running Wild is a book of poetry about Awful Ogre and his adventures. However, this ogre isn’t scary; he’s silly. Each poem has full page, full color drawings of Awful Ogre doing something funny like swimming with his pet piranha or having a snack of dried weasel remains with his Grandma Ogress. It’s short, lively, and funny poetry about a slightly silly monster.”

Recommended by: Keith Dinnage – Haughville Library

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