November 15, 2011


Mouse & LionBook 1:

Lion & Mouse
By Rand Burkert    Illustrated by Nancy E. Burkert  (2011)
Available in Hardcover

This lovely book is a retelling of the classic Aesop’s fable.  While foraging, mouse inadvertently stumbles over the sleeping lion, thinking he is a big mountain.  The captured mouse bravely begs for his release, telling the lion that someday he may need mouse’s help, in a pinch.  That day comes when the lion becomes trapped in a hunter’s net, with mouse gnawing him to freedom.  The text lends itself nicely, to read-aloud times… with the reader doing the “voices” of the lion and the mouse.  The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous, taking great care to depict the true African wilderness, in earthy tones of watercolors, ink and pencil.  Interestingly, this is a debut by the author, who is the son of the illustrator.

(Note:  The Kirkus Reviews state “this does not replace Jerry Pinkney’s transcendent, Caldecott-winning The Lion & The Mouse but proudly takes it’s place beside it”)   I agree.

Brother Sun, Sister MoonBook 2:

Brother Sun, Sister Moon:  Saint Francis of Assisi’s Canticle of the Creatures
By Katherine Patterson    Illustrated by Pamela Dalton  (2011)
Available in Hardcover

In this hymn of praise, originally written by Saint Francis of Assisi in the 1220’s, Katherine Patterson re-imagines the words beautifully, with the original prayer written at the end.  The illustrations are exquisite paper cuttings, framing each page with depth and beauty.  There are also notes from the author and illustrator at the end of the book, adding a personal touch to what Saint Francis has meant to them.  This is, truly, a beautiful testimonial to nature and would be a lovely gift to anyone of any age or faith.

Barnyard DanceBook 3:

Barnyard Dance
Written and illustrated by Sandra Boynton  (1993)
Available in a Board Book or Nook eReader Book (with read to me feature)

It is difficult for me to decide which Sandra Boynton book I wish to feature because I love them all! Her whimsical cartoon animals make you laugh and the sing-song rhyme of the text makes you want to dance.

Stomp your feet!
Clap your hands!
Everybody ready for a BARNYARD DANCE!
A fun, fun book to share with your bouncy toddlers.  I highly recommend all of Sandra Boynton’s darling books!

Other books by Sandra Boynton:
Moo, Baa, La La La!
Pajama Time!
Snuggle Puppy!: A Little Love Song
Belly Button Book!
Happy Hippo, Angry Duck: A Book of Moods
Little Pookie
Hippos Go Berserk!
The Going to Bed Book

Time For BedBook 4:

Time For Bed
By Mem Fox     Illustrations by Jane Dyer  (1993)
Available in Hardcover, Board Book and a Lap Edition Board Book

This is my “go to” book whenever a new baby is born and I want to give a gift.  It is one of my favorite books of all time!  The rhyming text is as soothing as a soft lullaby, as parents gently tuck their little one in for the night.  Dyer’s watercolor illustrations are gentle, sweet, and lovely.  I read this to my little daughter almost every night for years.  The perfect snuggly book!

Other books by Mem Fox:
Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes
Hattie and the Fox
Hello Baby!
Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge
Tough Boris
Koala Lou
Where is the Green Sheep?
Whoever You Are


About picturebooklook

Hello picture book enthusiasts! I am the mother of 3 twenty-something children and became a grandmother for the first time in early 2012. I have had an affection for picture books for almost as long as I can remember. I have acquired a treasured collection from when my children were young. I have never lost my fondness for them! I have worked in the Children's department of my local Barnes & Noble for the last 10 years. Each month I hope to feature a new picture book review, along with a classic picture book. The fact is, these books are true works of art! The stories are simple, sweet lines, that often stay with us into our adult lives. This blog is dedicated to Danielle Catherine and all of my future grandchildren, and also to all of you who love the beauty of picture books as much as I do!
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