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malala's magic pencil

“My father had always said, ‘Malala will live free as a bird.’”

The powerful and moving story of Malala, whose young voice has made a tremendous impact in her country and the world.  In Malala’s Magic Pencil, she shares her hopes for equality and eradicating war, poverty and hunger; dreams that started when she was a young girl.  Her bravery and boldness to speak out against the injustices in her country have made her an impetus for change and she has only just begun.

Malala’s Magic Pencil was written by Malala Yousafzai, illustrated by Kerascoët and published by Little Brown Books for Young Readers.  Click here to watch a book trailer.


little lit book series: traditions

This month’s #littlelitbookseries is all about traditions.

“In December, before a single flake has fallen, the cold snap comes.  For a week it is twenty below freezing, and when you walk in the woods, the leaves shatter under your feet like glass.”

When the Moon Comes is about a yearly tradition—a group of friends wait for just the right time of the year in December when the beaver flood freezes into perfect ice.  Wonderful ice.  Magical ice.  They wait until a full moon arrives and head to the frozen lake, sloshing through the snowy terrain.  It’s time for a game of hockey in the cold, blue moonlight, surrounded by silvery trees.  Afterwards, they warm up by the fire with scalding tea and toasty sandwiches.  It is their tradition.  Matt James’ paintings evoke a soft, wintry nostalgia and could not be a more perfect fit for Paul Harbridge’s beautiful prose, story and memories.  A wondrous book and the loveliest tribute to childhood and simpler times.  One of our absolute favorites this year.

When the Moon Comes was written by Paul Harbridge, illustrated by Matt James and published by Tundra Books.

For more books on this month’s theme of traditions, be sure to stop in at @littlelitbookseries throughout the month.  And see what everyone else is sharing today using the hashtag #littlelitbookseries on Instagram.


365 penguins

“Once you’ve reached the point of no return, one penguin more or one penguin less each day doesn’t make much difference anymore.“

Our madcap tale begins with an anonymous mysterious delivery on New Year’s Day—a penguin, of all things. With a note—“I’m number one, feed me when I’m hungry.”  Things get weirder and weirder and mayhem ensues as a new penguin arrives each day without fail.  Problems begin.  Especially since penguins eat 2.5 pounds of fish per day and they like to hog up the bathroom.  Complications arise with the advent of summer and the hot season.  Decisions need to be made and desperate times call for desperate measures.  A ridiculously funny and utterly enjoyable story with marvelous illustrations.

365 Penguins was written by Jean-Luc Fromental, illustrated by Joëlle Jolivet and published by Abrams Books for Young Readers.


edgar allan poe's pie

Edgar Allan Poe’s Pie is a collection of math puzzles and riddles based on famous works by poets Edgar Allan Poe, Edward Lear, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Lewis Carroll, Hilaire Belloc, Robert Frost, Eleanor Farjeon, A. A. Milne, William Carlos Willams, Langston Hughes, Ogden Nash, John Ciardi and Shel Silverstein.  These amusing, lyrical word problems are on the challenging side and would be best for ages 9-12 (or younger children with advanced skills).  Brief biographies with highlights of the poets’ lives are included in the back matter.

Edgar Allan Poe’s Pie: Math Puzzlers in Classic Poems was written by J. Patrick Lewis, Children’s Poet Laureate, and illustrated by Michael Slack.  This edition was published by Scholastic.


the wolf, the duck & the mouse

“Oh woe!  Oh doom!”  If only all problems could be solved with “a hunk of good cheese, a flagon of wine and some beeswax candles.”  Hilarious and ridiculous, always an excellent combination.  For those of you in want of another brilliant Mac Barnett/Jon Klassen collaboration, you'll eat this one up.

The Wolf, the Duck & the Mouse was written by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Jon Klassen and published by Candlewick Press.  Here's a book trailer for it.