Book Reviews

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“Book Reviews,” Friend, May 2008, 32–33

Book Reviews

Picture Books

Not a Box, by Antoinette Portis. A little rabbit finds a box … but it’s not just a box. It’s a race car, a mountain, a burning building, a robot! What can a box become in your imagination?

Fancy Nancy, by Jane O’Connor, illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser. Nancy is fancy, but her family isn’t. So Nancy offers to teach them how to have more pizzazz. Will they want to be fancy too?

All in Just One Cookie, by Susan E. Goodman, illustrated by Timothy Bush. Where do the ingredients in chocolate-chip cookies come from? When Grandma cooks, they can come from as far away as Madagascar or as close as your own backyard.

The Pink Refrigerator, by Tim Egan. Dodsworth lives a dull life until he finds an old refrigerator in the junkyard with a magnet that just won’t come off. The magnet advises Dodsworth to “make pictures,” “read more,” and “make music.” Find out what other magic the refrigerator holds.

For children ages 5–9

A Mother’s Journey, by Sandra Markle, illustrated by Alan Marks. Follow the story of an emperor penguin as she lays her first egg and then begins her journey to the sea to find food for herself and her soon-to-hatch chick.

Mole and Shrew All Year Through*, by Jackie French Koller, illustrated by John Beder. Spend a year with best friends Mole and Shrew as they make New Year’s resolutions, hunt for eggs, have a parade, and get ready for Christmas.

Mr. Putter and Tabby Feed the Fish*, by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Arthur Howard. Mr. Putter likes fish; so does Tabby, his fine cat. But does Tabby like the fish too much? Maybe Mrs. Teaberry and her dog, Zeke, can help.

Guji Guji, by Chih-Yuan Chen. Mother Duck doesn’t notice when a large egg rolls into her nest. When her eggs hatch, she has three ducklings and a baby crocodile, Guji Guji. When duck-hungry crocodiles make fun of Guji Guji’s ways and try to tempt him into betraying his family, he is put to the test.

For children ages 10–12

Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Stuart Little, by Peggy Gifford. Moxy has tried to do her summer reading assignment. She really has. It’s just that there are so many other things to do first … go swimming, plant an orchard, rest in the hammock. See if she finishes her book before school starts again!

The End of the Beginning: Being the Adventures of a Small Snail (and an Even Smaller Ant), by Avi. Join the adventure as Avon the snail and Edward the ant set out to find a happy life. Along the way they meet new friends (a caterpillar, a cricket, and a salamander, to name a few), and discover things about the world as well as themselves.


A Seed Is Sleepy, by Dianna Hutts Aston, illustrated by Sylvia Long. What is a seed? Where does its journey begin, and where does it end? Lovely illustrations paired with beautiful words tell the story of a seed’s many features.

Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet, by David McLimans. See more than the alphabet as you read through this menagerie. Each letter takes on the shape of an endangered animal, and a box on each page gives information about the animal.

I Wonder What It’s Like to Be an Earthworm, by Erin M. Hovanec. Anyone who has played in the grass has encountered an earthworm from time to time. Discover what it’s like to be an earthworm as you read about the way they live.

You Can’t See Your Bones with Binoculars: A Guide to Your 206 Bones, by Harriet Ziefert, pictures by Amanda Haley. Can you see your bones with binoculars? Of course not! But you can see them with X-rays. Learn about anatomy as you study real X-rays of bones on top of the illustrations.

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