Open Very Carefully by Nick Bromely and Nicola O’Byrne: This one is interactive & mixed-up; it’s quite fun!
Knock Knock by Daniel Beaty: This one might come across as an issues book, but it has a very powerful message and a sincerity that kept it from coming across as too heavy-handed.
The World is Waiting for You by Barbara Kerley: There was a nice format to this one, with the images of kinds and then what their interests might lead them into. It’s STEM-y but there’s a sense of wonder and curiosity to it that makes it the best kind of STEM-related thing
Baby Bear by Kadir Nelson: Lovely, quiet story. However, I was a bit flummoxed by the ending, which didn’t at all provide the kind of resolution I was expecting. It felt like Nelson was trying to make some kind of point–about self-sufficiency? nature?–but I wasn’t sure what exactly that was and so it fell a little flat.
And the Cars Go by William Bee: Love! I will rant at length about picture books that rhyme, when they don’t need to and don’t have any real sense of rhythm or poetry. Here, it’s the opposite–a strong rhythm that doesn’t attempt to rhyme or be poetic but builds up into a marvellous cacophony of travelling sounds. Bee’s colorful illustrations are also great.
Patti Cake and Her New Doll by Patricia Reilly Giff: A bit precious, but sweet.
Little Frog’s Tadpole Trouble by Tatyana Feeney: I love Feeney’s books–her sense of line is great and she treads the tricky grey area between sweetness and sentimentality with a lot of grace.
Founding Mothers: With a focus on the women of the Revolution, this one has a great sense of forgotten history beyond the obvious.
Odd Duck by Cecil Castellucci and Sara Varon: Very enchanting! But the tea snob in me is offended by the fact that Lipton and Twinings are mentioned in the same sentence! *faints*
The Lost & Found Balloon: If this had simply been illustrations, I would have been completely charmed. As it is, I found the text heavy-handed and too limiting
The Case of the Missing Donut: It’s very fun! But I didn’t feel like it was a story that stayed with me in any way