Clever Jack Takes the Cake by Candace Fleming

Reviewed by Diane Basting (Library Staff)


Jack gets an invitation to the Princess’s 10th birthday party and uses ingenuity and determination to make a cake for a birthday present. Once the cake is all assembled, no easy task, Jack sets off to the party and learns when he gets there that sometimes the best presents are the intentions behind the gift and having a kind heart to go along with a clever mind. I would recommend this for older readers as there are a lot of words, and the message will hit different for anyone who has a difficult person to buy a gift for.

Located in Children’s Picture Books (E FLEMING (PRINCESS))

Polar Opposites by Erik Brooks

Reviewed by Diane Basting (Library Staff)


A polar bear and a penguin become pen pals and we learn they are complete opposites but distance and differences can all be met in the middle or rather the Galapagos Islands in this case. I loved this cute story about a Loud Polar bear who loved bright colors being best friends with a quiet penguin who likes a monochromatic wardrobe. Anyone need a pen pal?

Located in Children’s Picture Books (E BROOKS)

The Restless Girls by Jessie Burton

Reviewed by Melissa Beck (Library Staff)

A cross between a novel and a picture book, this illustrated 145-page retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses is such a delight. I picked it up after finishing the author’s recent book, Medusa (also lavishly illustrated), looking for more elegant, lyrical writing and I was not disappointed. Burton reimagines my favorite fairy tale with humor and compassion, bringing us strong characters and a fabulous updated ending that literally had me grinning. You won’t regret dancing the night away with this one.

Available through the Bridges Library System

The More the Merrier by David Martin

Reviewed by Diane Basting (Library Staff)

Bear starts a dance party that lets all the animals show off their dance moves and even if you don’t move like your friends it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the same beat! Fun story with simple pictures and light rhyming, a great read aloud on a rainy day to get your little one to dance like a bear, wiggle like a snake, or stomp like a moose.

Located in Children’s Picture Books (E MARTIN)

In a Jar by Deborah Marcero

Reviewed by Diane Basting (Library Staff)

Most people can collect memories with cameras and reminders in jars like stones from a hike or a photo of a sunset but Lewellyn has a special way of collecting memories in jars and shares them with his friend Evelyn. Find out what Llewellyn and Evelyn collect and what memories they share both near and far.

Located in Children’s Picture Books (E MARCERO)

Mina by Matthew Forsythe

Reviewed by Melissa Beck (Library Staff)

It has been a while since I’ve discovered a picture book so hilarious and heartwarming that I am compelled to read it aloud, unsolicited, to all of my friends, family, and co-workers. Well, I’ve been carrying Mina around for the past week, reading it out loud to everyone, and laughing every single time.

Mina tells the story of the titular bookish mouse who is extremely content with her cozy life until her father brings home a surprise that changes everything. Despite the simplified shapes of the characters, Matthew Forsythe is a master at conveying thoughts and feelings in each facial expression.

As a fan of his previous picture book, Pokko and the Drum, I had an idea of the lush, earthy art style and zany story I was probably getting into, but I did not know that the pacing would be so perfect, the page-turns so dramatic, and the characters quite so brave and loveable.

I brought my copy back today for you to check out but, now that I think of it, I haven’t had a chance to read it to the mailman yet…

Available through the Bridges Library System

Looking for a Moose by Phyllis Root

Reviewed by Diane Basting (Library Staff)


Moose are very hard to find, in fact our four explorers have never seen one! The only solution they can come up with is to go in search of the Elusive moose on their nature hike. Every other page spread or so has a moose; some are easy to spot via their antlers or tails, some are harder to find with only their hooves showing. Will you and our hikers be able to spot all the moose along the way? Find out in this delightful hide and seek without flaps picture book.

Located in Children’s Picture Books (E ROOT)

Bird Hugs by Ged Adamson

Reviewed by Diane Basting (Library Staff)


It’s hard to be a flightless bird when all your feathered friends can fly. Poor Bernard felt dejected about his wings until he learned his arms were made for hugs and making friends. Friends can make all the difference.


Sweet story about accepting yourself and that friends care about who you are not what you can’t do.

Located in Children’s Picture Books (E ADAMSON)

Sardines of Love by Zurine Aguirre

Reviewed by Diane Basting (Library Staff)

Grandpa Lolo loves sardines so very much so, that it’s all he eats! Grandma Lola is not fond of sardines after selling them all day. One day Lola ran out of sardines at the sardine stand so had to go fish for them. She didn’t catch any sardines that day but she did meet Jeff the octopus who taught her to love sardines and Grandpa Lolo to love Lola more then he loves sardines.

Cute simple color saturated illustrations help this story move along, with a lot of pages and similar character names. I would suggest this one for a slightly older listener/reader to get all the nuances and little jokes along the illustrated way then the 2 year old I read with.

Located in Children’s Picture Books (E AGUIRRE)

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