Books Inc. Kids Blog

Pirates Vs. Cowboys by Aaron Reynolds

I love this picture book! When the pirates (all sea creatures) show up in Cheyenne (to bury booty, of course) inhabited by ranch animal cowboys, they quickly realize that neither speak the others' language. Things really heat up until the world's only pirate cowboy shows up and helps them get past their differences. A great read aloud!

 

 --Reviewed by Katie of Books Inc. Palo Alto

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benamin Alire Saenz

This book had me curious when it swept the ALA awards with 3 wins and this book definitely deserves all of them and more. Aristotle (or Ari) and Dante don't obviously have much in common except their Mexican heritage, but somehow manage to become good friends. Ari is an angry teen coping with the ghost of his older brother and his father's time in the Vietnam War while Dante is openly expressive and has an easy family relationship. That friendship is cemented when Ari saves Dante from a hit and run getting
injured in the process. When a friend risks his or her life to save yours, how does that friendship change? And when Dante comes out as gay, how does that affect the friendship?  Saenz writes a lovely exploration of friendship and love - love of one's self, love between a parent and child and love between friends. His prose is lyrical and portrays a depth of emotion that transcends the page. This easily is one of my favorite reads of this year and it's not even halfway to the end of the year yet!

If you like A.S. King's Ask the Passengers, I would definitely recommend you give this a try!

- Reviewed by Connie of Books Inc. Opera Plaza

Take Me Out to the Yakyu by Aaron Meshon

Just in time for baseball season! This adorable book follows a young boy and his love for baseball. Both of his grandfathers - one from America and the other from Japan - love the sport, which means this lucky kid gets to watch baseball games on two opposite shores. The languages and mascots might be different, but it doesn't change the love of the game. With bright, fun illustrations that are still highly informative (and are great for finding the similarities and minor differences in both countries), this is a definite home run. Perfect for young baseball fans and for pops and grandpas who aren't sure what book to read to their kids and grandkids. For ages 2-6. --reviewed by Robbin of Compass Books in SFO

Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan

It's easy to dismiss this book because on the surface the structure and execution are quite frankly whimsical: a gay high school student never needs to come out to his friends because he lives in the sort of town where his homosexuality was diagnosed to little fanfare in elementary school. In fact, the LGBTQ experience here is more the rule and everyone else the exception. But like with most Young Adult novels, "Boy Meets Boy" can't be dismissed just because it seems naïve at first glance. In fact, the world portrayed here isn't the world as it "should be" per se -- David Levithan is only stating a plain truth: that we all want to love, and be in love, and neither act is the domain of a singular orientation.

Reviewed by Joe of Books Inc. Opera Plaza

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