My Best Friend by Julie Fogliano

my best friendMy Best Friend by Julie Fogliano & Jillian Tamaki. 2020. Digitally rendered illustrations. Published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers.

Brief summary: Two young girls become best friends instantly. They laugh, dance, and play in harmony. They share a funny and silly day together before being picked up by their parents. They will learn each other’s names tomorrow.

Comments: Such a sweet and beautiful book about friendship. Great read aloud for primary grades.

All of the words are in  small caps. The illustration colors are green, brown, black, and white.

The Great Eggscape! by Jory John

The Great Eggscape!The Great Eggscape! by Jory John; illustrated by Pete Oswald(interior illustrations by Saba Joshaghani based on the artwork of Pete Oswald). 2020. Pencil sketches scanned and painted in Adobe Photoshop. Published by HarperCollins.

Brief summary: Shel, the egg, wonders where all of the other eggs go inside the store on the weekends while he enjoys hanging out in the carton reading in peace and solitude. The great eggscapes are usually short with everyone returning by lunch. Concerned that no one has returned yet, Shel decides to leave the carton and search for his friends that he finds camouflaged to look like various items in the store. Shel realizes he may like to  play with others from time to time as well as being by himself.

Comments: I LOVE these hilarious books with duo John and Oswald! Great sense of humor and puns.

This is a clever wink to Easter eggs in regards to how the eggs are all decked out in various colors and decorations and are hidden(and found) in the store similar to an Easter egg hunt.

I’ll never look at my carton of eggs in the refrigerator quite the same.

Note: Stickers are included with this book that a younger reader could use to decorate Easter eggs.

The Cool Bean by Jory John

The Cool BeanThe Cool Bean by Jory John; illustrated by Pete Oswald. 2019. Scanned watercolor textures and digital paint. Published by Harper Collins.

Brief summary: A bean admires his friends who are now cool beans. Everything they do is cool, and he wishes he was as cool. No matter how much he tries to match their coolness, he fails in comparison and begins to lose his self-esteem. One day, he drops his lunch in the cafeteria and was amazed that one of the cool beans helped him clean it up. He continues to have other mishaps and is helped by the cool beans. He regains his self-confidence and realizes that coolness isn’t about how one looks but about helping others.

Comments: The illustrations are hilarious. The story’s morale would appeal to young readers.  Several bean puns.

These are a few others by this author/illustrator duo with funny life lessons to share:

The Bad Seed                                     The Good Egg

Coming out in February 2020:

The Good Egg Presents The Great Eggscape

 

The Last Peach by Gus Gordon; illustrated by Gus Gordon

thelastpeachThe Last Peach by Gus Gordon; illustrated by Gus Gordon. 2019. Published by Roaring Brook Press.

Brief summary: Two bugs are sitting on a leaf in the peach tree admiring the last peach of the year and discuss how they should eat it. Another bug comes along and wonders if the peach is rotten inside. The two continue to discuss the pros and cons of eating the peach and decide it is too beautiful to eat.

Comments: This whimsical book would work well as a reader’s theater selection. Each character has a different colored font to make it easier for young readers to keep track. I like that the end pages have pictures of peaches instead of just plain white paper.

Draw the Line by Kathryn Otoshi

Draw the Line

Draw the Line by Kathryn Otoshi; illustrated by Kathryn Otoshi. 2017. Published by Roaring Brook Press.

Brief summary: Two boys are drawing a long line on the ground unaware of each other until they bump backs. They connect their lines and happily play with the rope they have made. One of the boys accidentally pulls the rope too hard causing the other one to fall. They end up in a tug of war with the center of their rope turning into a growing crevice separating them. They fall back to the ground with the line now on the ground with a larger canyon separating the boys as they argue with one another. One of the boys goes to where the line has the smallest gap and plays in the dirt. Delighted with getting dirty, he raises his muddy hand to the other boy who decides to join him. Soon all of the canyon is filled again as they play in the mud. They happily run off together into the sun to play.

Comments: This story without words can be easily understood by all.  The four colors are black, grays, yellow(happy) and purple(angry). The illustrations often are twofold.

Buy here.

Give Me Back My Book! by Travis Foster and Ethan Long

Give Me Back My Book!

Give Me Back My Book! by Travis Foster and Ethan Long. 2017. Digitally illustrated. Published by Chronicle Books.

Brief summary: Redd and Bloo argue over who is the owner of a green colored book. Bloo believes the book Redd is reading is actually his. They discover evidence indicating it actually does belong to one of them. Bookworm comes out of her hole in the middle of their arguing  and steals the book from the two. She hides in her hole out of the reach of the two friends.  Redd and Bloo decide after trying to get the book back from Bookworm and failing to make a better book to entice Bookworm to trade. She does and the two run off to read their book together until another argument occurs.

Comments: I believe that this book will do well in any elementary school library where fighting over books  happens daily.  This book could be read to students to teach how to share a book.

Buy here.

All Kinds of Friends by Shelley Rotner and Sheila M. Kelly

All Kinds of Friends

All Kinds of Friends by Shelley Rotner and Sheila M. Kelly. 2017. Photography. Published by Millbrook Press.

Brief summary: Through simple text, this book explores all kinds of friends one can have.

Comments:  This teaches how there are different types of friends. It talks about the characters a friend could have like funny or tall. The book talks about where you may have different friends like at school or in a family. It  explores the fun activities friends like to do like dress up or pretend. I liked that it explained that sometimes we can be sad or mad with our friends. I will definitely be buying this book to share with my elementary students. The photographs really caught the true facial expressions of the friends.

Buy here.

(I may receive a small commission for purchases made with links in this post through the Amazon Affiliate Program.  Books in this picture book blog are not sent to me in exchange for a review, but instead, are checked out from a public library).

Twindergarten by Nikki Ehrlich

Twindergarten

Twindergarten by Nikki Ehrlich; illustrated by Zoey Abbott. 2017. Colored pencils. Published by Harper.

Brief summary: Twins Dax and Zoe do everything together. The night before school has them wondering what it will be like to be in different kindergarten rooms. Dax is a bit worried but changes his mind when they arrive to the school building and sees his new teacher. Zoe is now not so sure until she notices another girl with her exact backpack and makes friends with her. Both twins do several activities with new  friends and enjoy their mornings. The two siblings meet and play together at recess. Dax slips something into Zoe’s pocket before going back inside that lets her know he has not forgotten her.

Comments: This would be a super book to read on the first day of school if you are a teacher with one of the twins in your class and equally good if you are a parent with twins going in separate classrooms.  Making friends is easier for some students.   Students also could relate if they are in a different class from a close friend.  They may be comforted to know that they could also make new friends.

Buy here.

(I may receive a small commission for purchases made with links in this post through the Amazon Affiliate Program.  Books in this picture book blog are not sent to me in exchange for a review, but instead, are checked out from a public library).

The Thing Lou Couldn’t Do by Ashley Spires

The Thing Lou Couldn't Do

The Thing Lou Couldn’t Do by Ashley Spires; illustrated by Ashley Spires. 2017.  Published by Kids Can Press.

Brief summary: Lou and her friends love to use their imaginations together during play time and go on all sorts of  adventures. But when Lou’s friends decide to climb  a tree to play, she comes up with many excuses of why she cannot join them instead of admitting she is afraid or has never climbed a tree. Lou convinces herself that she really doesn’t want to climb the tree. Her friends kindly offer to show her how to climb a tree. She tries but is not successful on her attempt. Her compassionate and empathetic friends take the game to another place outside. Lou keeps working on climbing the tree leaving the reader wondering if she will be successful.

Comments: A good read aloud to encourage trying something, failing, but trying again. Growth mindset example of how we can always learn new things even if they are scary at times. Students would also see an example of compassionate friends who do not make fun of Lou but instead, encourage  and help her. Ashley Spires’ The Most Magnificent Thing is also a great story of teaching perseverance and imagination. She is also the author of the graphic novel series titled Binky. I look forward to seeing more picture books by this author/illustrator.

Buy here. 

(I may receive a small commission for purchases made with links in this post through the Amazon Affiliate Program.  Books in this picture book blog are not sent to me in exchange for a review, but instead, are checked out from a public library).