booksinckids's blog

Author Kathryn Otoshi Loves...


Beautiful Oops! by Barney Saltzberg

Hooray for Beautiful Oops!

It’s FABULOUS to make mistakes!

What? But we’re not supposed to make them, let alone embrace them, right?

This sunny yellow, liberating book says, “Why not”? And reminds us all to take a deep breath and chill – after all, that grape juice spill on a class drawing is not the end of the world. In fact, that purple, sticky splotch can become a laughing pig holding a crayon. Or when your dog, Buster, walks over your drawing and makes a big rrrippp with his muddy paws – wait! That tear can be the happy grin of a monster eating …chocolate cake!                                                                                                        

I guess when my cockatiel, Buttercup, flies over on my desk and pecks holes in my manuscript again, I’ll need to count it as a blessing in disguise. Heck, that plot needed to be revisited anyway!

Life is too short to get stuck in the quagmires of negativity or blame. Every day we feel the pressure to be perfect. But so much about life is about our mistakes and how we decide to overcome them. This book is a celebration about being human– and using our creativity, humor, and our choice in any given situation to zero in on the positive. So the next time when something potentially ‘disastrous’ happens, think of it as this amazing creative opportunity to turn whatever ‘it’ is into something crazy, unique and imaginatively beautiful.

Kathryn is the award-winning author of the character-building series, Zero, One and Two and the co-author and illustrator of upcoming September release, Beautiful Hands.



Books Inc. Kids Review - Black and White Toys by David Stewart

Black and White: Toys by David Stewart
Publication Date: March 3rd, 2015
Publisher: Scribblers
Genre: Board Books
Ages: 2-5

Eyes on children's most beloved toys! What would you like to play with—the teddy bear? Blocks? A rubber ducky? Little ones will happily gaze on black-and-white pictures of some of their favorite things. This striking and stylish board book features bold images especially designed to hold the attention of infants from birth to one year. And the special fabulous die-cut sparkly shape on the last page will delight baby!

This book is terrific for infants! It is easier for infants to distinguish black and white versus colors. Each page is replicated. The Toy is Black and White on the page, then White on Black on the following page. It is a very cool concept. The last page has a glittery surprise (a glittery duck). We have it on great authority that 8 month old Connor loves this book to be read to him and he says “it tastes good too!”
Reviewed by Chantal from Books Inc. Mountain View

Books Inc. Kids Review - Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer by Kelly Jones

Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer by Kelly Jones
Publication Date: May 12, 2015
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
Genre: Middle Reader
Ages: 8-12

Fans of Polly Horvath or Roald Dahl will love this quirky story of a determined girl, and some extraordinary chickens.  Told in letters to Sophie s "abuela, " quizzes, a chicken-care correspondence course, to-do lists, and more, "Unusual Chickens" is a quirky, clucky classic in the making.

When Sophie and her family move from the city to the farm they've inherited, they worry that they aren't cut out for country living. While her parents struggle to make ends meet, Sophie explores the farm -- and begins to find chickens that would give even the most weathered farmer a run for her money. Determined to make the most of her new life, Sophie dives headfirst into the care and keeping of chickens, unusual and otherwise. Half the joy of the book is waiting to see what powers the next chicken will have, and they never disappoint. Kelly Jones has created a coop with abilities as varied as the cast of a Marvel comic book.

Even better, the book's human cast is just as diverse as its superpowered chickens. Numerous skin tones, racial identities, and romantic orientations exist in the world of the book, and it's refreshing to see a children's author recognize the importance of positive representation. Sophie is bold and inquisitive, with a strong sense of responsibility and loyalty. Her family's financial struggle feels real, and helps ground what is often a very silly story. Katie Kath's gorgeous illustrations bring the world and characters to life, and remind me of some of children's literature's all-time greats. It's a beautiful book, and one I can't wait to share with the young readers in my life.

Reviewed by David at Books Inc. in Berkeley



Subscribe to RSS - booksinckids's blog