Wednesday, July 15, 2015

July Recommendations

GONE CRAZY IN ALABAMA, by Rita Williams-Garcia, is the third installment of the trilogy which began with Newbery Honor book, One Crazy Summer. It features the irrepressible sisters Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern, now off to visit Big Mama in Alabama. A strong finish to the series. (MG)

IREMONGER BOOK ONE: HEAP HOUSE, by Edward Carey, is terrific and bizarre. It feels pretty Dickensian, but the magic of the Birth Objects takes it well into the realm of fantasy. Wholly original, and well and creepily told, I can't wait to read volume 2! (Upper MG/YA)

And at last--a new Penderwicks story!! THE PENDERWICKS IN SPRING, by Jeanne Birdsall, is another delightful romp with the Penderwick family, whose original book was a National Book Award winner. This time we are mostly following Batty, who is now in fifth grade. Rosalind is off in college, and Skye and Jane busy with high school friends, which leaves Ben (third grade) and new sister Lydia to help with the adventures of a new dog walking business and secret-keeping. Delightful stuff, as always. (MG)

SIDEWALK FLOWERS is a wordless story written by poet JonArno Lawson and illustrated by Sydney Smith. A young child, accompanying her distracted father around town, picks and distributes flowers, which helps to bring her world alive. The art uses comic book-style panels and full page spreads to tell this story, as well as the deliberate addition of color to show the effect that a little bit of care and attention can bring.

MAPLE is a debut, written and illustrated by Lori Nichols. It's the story of young Maple, so named after her parents plant a tree in her honor. The text is lovely, the illustrations are lovely, but what stood out to me is how the two entwine. This book is just the right amount of sweet.

WHEN THE WIND BLOWS, by Linda Booth Sweeney, wonderfully illustrated by Jana Christy, is a lyrical journey thorough a windy afternoon. The rhyming verse seems effortlessly done. If you want to write in rhyme, give this one a look!