Reviews written by Sarah Jackson, Staff Reviewer

25 results - showing 1 - 15
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Ordering
January 13, 2018 (Updated: January 13, 2018)
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Enlightening, Challenging, a Reminder of Why We Read

Journeys is a collection of letters from the “Letters About Literature” program sponsored by the Library of Congress Center for the Book. This program encourages young readers from around the United States to submit letters to authors of books and poetry that have affected them. The book is organized into...

January 10, 2018
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
She’s Still Got It!

A little red bird knows she is is ready to leave home but wonders where she will go: north, south, east, or west? She explores many regions of the world but eventually returns home, a big bird, and ready to start a family of her own. The text has all...

January 10, 2018
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
Zany, Detailed, Funny

It’s hard to know what to make of Barnett and Pizzoli’s book. Packed with off-the-wall comparisons and unorthodox relationships, the book is indeed a “celebration of the many tender, madcap ways we love one another,” as the summary on the dust jacket says. A handful of children and some assorted...

January 10, 2018
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Kids Fiction
A fun read-aloud about friendship

The third Duck and Bear book, Come Home Already! explores the need for a balance between alone time and social time. When Bear decides to go on a solo camping and fishing trip, Duck is beside himself with boredom and loneliness. Bear, meantime, is finding his solitary time to be...

January 10, 2018
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
A Beautiful Invitation

Written as a series of tanka, five-line Japanese poems related to haiku, and illustrated with rich, natural imagery, this book is both a description of and an invitation to mindfulness. Coombs’ poems are child-centered and accessible and Laitinen’s decorative style, reminiscent of Sophie Blackall, is somehow both nostalgic and contemporary....

September 19, 2017
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
The Fascinating and the Furious

Most of us have days when we just get mad. We don’t know why. We don’t know who is to blame. And we don’t know what to do about it. That’s what happens to Angus, a young white boy who wakes up one morning mad at everything and everyone. Eventually,...

September 19, 2017
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
An Argument for Democracy

Jonah wants to rule the playground. And he’s a good ruler. Except when he’s not. The problem is that Lennox also wants to rule the playground. She’s also a good ruler. Except when she’s not. The rest of the children follow first one then the other as the two kingdoms...

September 19, 2017 (Updated: September 19, 2017)
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
Interactive and Informative

This book relies on the interactive nature of read-alouds for young children. Beginning with a single zinnia seed, the book encourages children to “press it down” into the dirt, “wiggle your fingers to add some water,” and “rub the sun to make it hotter.” Child readers “help” a handful...

June 19, 2017
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Young Adult Fiction
Big Dreams, Big Themes

Eleven-year-old Alex has dreams that extend beyond the stratosphere. His main goal, of course, is to follow in the footsteps of his hero, Carl Sagan, and launch his rocket, Voyager 3, and his golden iPod into space. But as he travels with his dog—also named Carl Sagan—to New Mexico for...

February 18, 2017
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
3.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Kids Fiction
Sweet, in More Ways Than One!

The cherry twins turn everything into a competition, and the sundae-making contest is no exception. Each is convinced they will win, but there is one problem: they are attached at the stem. As they work together in practice, however, they help each other overcome fears and push each other to...

February 11, 2017
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
3.0
Kids Fiction
Good Bedtime Book

All creatures need to sleep. In this book, a host of animals—from a baby moose to a baby hedgehog—are tucked into bed with the simple lifting of a flap. Young children will enjoy helping the various animals prepare for sleep before reaching the concluding page which asks whether they would...

February 11, 2017
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Kids Fiction
Simple and Engaging

In this sequel to the book Tuck Me In!, young readers are invited to help a wide range of hungry animals by lifting the flap and finding them a snack. From a tiny mouse who would like some cheese to a panda who is eager for some bamboo, readers learn...

January 28, 2017
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
3.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
3.0
Kids Fiction
A Debut Picture Book About Unlikely Friends

Mole is happy in his dark, cozy burrow, but when he hears commotion overhead, he ventures outside to find out what is happening. The light is blinding, though, and he quickly stumbles and falls asleep in a dark corner of the woods. At night, he meets Wolf, who is afraid...

January 28, 2017
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
3.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Pure Silliness

Giraffe! Walrus! Ostrich! Snake! These are just a few of the animals that are accidentally served to a young boy when he goes to a fine restaurant for dinner. A playful take on the “there’s a hair in my soup” joke, this book ups the ante, demonstrating how disruptive it...

January 18, 2017
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
Robots + Superheroes = Recipe for Success

One night, a great inventor creates a fleet of robots so tiny they cannot be seen by the naked eye. He names them “NanoBots,” bestows them each with a super power, and declares that they will “change the world!” The inventor is so proud of his creations that he enters...

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