Tag: nature

LEAF LITTER CRITTERS: Poems from the Duff

LEAF LITTER CRITTERS: Poems from the Duff

Lynn: There’s nothing more fun for kids (and many adults) than grubbing in the dirt. Any gardener or small child knows that there are a lot of fascinating things to be found there—many of them wonderfully wiggly. But I had no idea of either the huge variety of critters to be found there or their […]

Maria Sibylla Merian: Woman of Science, Art, and Courage

Maria Sibylla Merian: Woman of Science, Art, and Courage

Lynn: In the author’s note of her first biography, Joyce Sidman recalls her first encounter with Maria Merian’s work in the Minneapolis Museum of Art when she saw prints of her intricate depictions of natural life.  Like most of us, Sidman knew little about Merian. “In many ways, Maria was an enigma. She rarely wrote […]

TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: Practice Recognizing Fake News

TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE: Practice Recognizing Fake News

Cindy: There have been a number of YA fiction books with the title “Two Truths and a Lie,” but we’ve found a creative, informational book for middle-grade students that reinforces evaluating information for truth. Fake news, anyone? Two Truths and a Lie: It’s Alive (2017) by Ammi-Joan Paquette and Laurie Ann Thompson is the first […]

Save the Trees! Fairies, Fracking, and Environmental Fights

Save the Trees! Fairies, Fracking, and Environmental Fights

Lynn: The bare bones of Emma Carroll’s In Darkling Wood (2017) seem simple enough. Alice’s little brother Theo desperately needs a heart transplant, and the call from the hospital has finally come. Alice goes to stay with Nell, the spiky, strong-willed grandmother Alice doesn’t remember, in a cottage surrounded by ancient forest. Nell hates the […]

Praying Mantis Picture Books

Praying Mantis Picture Books

Lynn: I’ve realized that my posts lately seem to feature a lot of bugs and critters—but my experience with the Focus Group has taught me you can never have enough books about them! So here are two more starring a particularly spectacular insect: the praying mantis. Most kids will recognize this large bug. Found in […]

Hidden Lives of Toads Revealed!

Hidden Lives of Toads Revealed!

Lynn: Yes, there are a zillion books for kids about toads, frogs, and tadpoles. Trust me, few are as terrific as The Hidden Life of a Toad (2017), photographer Doug Wechsler’s up-close and personal look at the fascinating stages of metamorphosis. Most kids will have seen tadpoles, or at least books about them, but here the […]

THE PHOTO ARK: A Delightful Deluge of Animal Portraits

THE PHOTO ARK: A Delightful Deluge of Animal Portraits

Lynn: We focus on youth books here at Bookends, but every so often, an adult book comes along that we think would be of special interest to kids. The Photo Ark: One Man’s Quest to Document the World’s Animals (2017) by Joel Sartore is just that sort of book. In fact, this book may be […]

This Trio of Picture Books is the Bee’s Knees

This Trio of Picture Books is the Bee’s Knees

Lynn: Although it’s not unusual for children to be afraid of bees, bees are struggling, and they need all the help we can give them. Winning over a new generation of bee protectors has never been more important. Happily, I’ve read a trio of fun picture books starring our stripey friends that should help the […]

The Blue Hour by Isabelle Simler

Cindy: The blue hour happens twice a day, at dawn and dusk, and is treasured by artists for its exceptional quality of light. I treasure Isabelle Simler’s The Blue Hour because it’s a gorgeous new picture book from France by an author / illustrator who takes full advantage of that magical time. The endpapers set the scene […]

MOTO AND ME: Cuteness Overload

MOTO AND ME: Cuteness Overload

Lynn: Suzi Eszterhas makes it clear that Moto is no pet, but I doubt anyone who reads Moto and Me: My Year as a Wildcat’s Foster Mom (2017) won’t feel a pang when she releases the serval kitten to the wild. Wildlife photographer and author Eszterhas was living in Kenya to photograph animals on the Masai […]