October Picture Book Roundup

Another month of picture book reviews! This is my monthly round up of the picture books I have received for review from publishers/authors/publicists ~ for more of my picture books posts and reviews, stay tuned to my dedicated Instagram account! And HERE is the blog post with all of the picture books I used in my library story times this month.

Please note that when I receive finished copies of quality titles I donate them to my library. When I receive galleys/ARCs, they are shared with Kid Lit Exchange.


The People Shall ContinueThe People Shall Continue by Simon J. Ortiz
(Lee and Low ~ October 15, 2017 (reissue))

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am BEYOND blessed to have received a review copy of this title from Lee and Low ~ it is such an important narration of the “epic story of Native American People” as described on the back. If you add any children’s nonfiction book to your home library, classroom or actual library this fall, it needs to be this one. It’s a re-issue but just as impeccably told and relevant as it was 40 years ago. And in my personal opinion, if Thanksgiving, Columbus or Westward Expansion are mentioned or taught in any way in schools, this book *must* be included as an antidote. There is a Spanish edition of this title as well. Required purchase. I am adding this copy to my school library collection and purchasing an additional copy as well.


Listen: How Pete Seeger Got America SingingListen: How Pete Seeger Got America Singing by Leda Schubert
(Roaring Brook Press ~ June 13, 2017)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Thanks to Blue Slip Media for the review copy of this title.

As a school librarian, I absolutely love picture book biographies, and this is one that I will definitely be using for a read aloud with classes. I especially love when books have natural tie-ins with extension activities. Whether or not my students are already familiar with Seger’s work, we will be able to listen to clips of his music and discuss the importance that he had on the culture of the United States – you can find a wide variety of resources on Schubert’s site. Throughout the book, as it covers the timeline of Seger’s career, there are song titles below each significant event or topic – this is an excellent set up for a really rich reading and listening experience, whether it be at home, in a library story time or in a music classroom. The illustrations are beautiful with soft pixelated images.

Included in the back pages of this book are an author’s note, bibliography, timeline, recommended children’s books and recommended recordings.


BraveBrave by Stacy McAnulty
(Running Press ~ October 3, 2017)

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Beautiful and colorful story showing all the different ways of being brave. I adore the fact that the term isn’t defined just by typically heroic acts of muscle and daring, but also never giving up, standing back up, fighting for justice and fighting illness. Very simple text with detailed illustrations depicting a diverse cast of unnamed child characters.

Thanks to Running Press for the review copy of this title – all opinions are my own.

Highly recommended for purchase for school libraries and for all the brave kiddos in your life.


Peep and Egg: I'm Not Taking a BathPeep and Egg: I’m Not Taking a Bath by Laura Gehl
(Farrar Straus Giroux ~ October 24, 2017)

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Thanks to Blue Slip Media for the review copy of this title.

I read this aloud to my 6 year old for a bedtime story and we both loved it! It’s short and sweet and simple and just perfect for the toddler through kindergarten crowd. I will now be purchasing the rest of the books in this series for my school library – my 4K classes will love them.


Bulldozer DreamsBulldozer Dreams by Sharon Chriscoe
(Running Press Books ~ October 3, 2017)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a cute bedtime story for fans of “Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site” and all things trucks and diggers!

Thanks to Running Press for the review copy of this title – all opinions are my own.

This is a vividly colored picture book with lyrical text that would be an excellent choice for a bedtime story or class read aloud for grades PK and K. I will be using this book as a PK read aloud in my library. The text is a bit clunky at times, but not in a way noticeable by the youngest listeners, and the illustrations and subject matter will be high interest with this population. Recommended purchase for those with construction-loving kid populations, along with the companion title RACE CAR DREAMS.


Snappsy the Alligator and His Best Friend Forever (Probably)Snappsy the Alligator and His Best Friend Forever by Julie Falatko
(Viking Children’s Books ~ October 3, 2017)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Snappsy is a lovable curmudgeon, and kids love hearing this story with the different voices read with lots of expression. It’s a sweet story of reluctant friendship with a healthy dose of exaggeration. Fans of the earlier Snappsy title and books such as the Elephant & Piggie series by Mo Willems will eat this up as they follow Snappsy and his friend Bert (who knew he had a name?!?) on their adventures. The illustrations are adorable and the speech bubbles make this attractive to early readers.

Thanks to Running Press for the review copy of this title.

Recommended for purchase in elementary libraries and in classrooms grades K-2.


Pug Pig Trick-or-TreatPug Pig Trick-or-Treat by Sue Lowell Gallion
(Beach Lane Books ~ July 25, 2017)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is adorable, with a story and illustrations perfect for an audience grades 1 and under. The story of friendship and Halloween will delight both readers familiar with Pug and Pig, as well as those new to the pair.

Highly recommended for Halloween storytimes for the younger crowd!

Thanks to Blue Slip Media for the review copy of this title.


Me and You and the Red CanoeMe and You and the Red Canoe by Jean E. Pendziwol
(Groundwood Books ~ August 1, 2017)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a beautiful book! The style of the illustrations perfectly capture the Northwoods feel of this story of siblings sharing time together on a lake, while the lyrical text and story describe an incredibly peaceful and natural setting. As a native of Northern Wisconsin, this book put me right back at my family’s cabin and evoked such wonderful memories. I will be reading this aloud to my elementary library classes as we head into summer and talk about summer plans.

Thanks to House of Anansi for providing me with a review copy of this title.

Highly recommended for home bookshelves and libraries.


Space Boy and the Snow MonsterSpace Boy and the Snow Monster by Dian Regan
(Boyds Mills Press ~ October 10, 2017)

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Thanks to Blue Slip Media for this review copy.

This is a fun picture book that is almost written in a graphic format, with different panels on each page. The text is fairly terse, so I can definitely see this one being best used in a one-on-one setting or small group rather than in a large group read aloud. This is book 3 in a series, so fans of the series will be excited about a new title featuring Space Boy!


 Most PeopleMost People by Michael Leannah
(Tilbury House ~ August 15, 2017)

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Thanks to a publisher’s representative for the review copy of this title.

In these current times of political strife and scary events in our world, this picture book is a reassurance that most people are good. The repeated text and sweet illustrations highlight to kids that despite the actions and words of a few, the world is a good place. I can definitely see this being used with classes or families after witnessing something traumatic, or even just after children see something scary on the news. In my librarian opinion, it would be best to use this in that situation rather than just as a “cold” read aloud. I would recommend this for preschool and up, given that the message can be as deep as the audience wants it to be. This is a book to read alongside Come with Me by Holly McGhee.


 Martí's Song for Freedom / Martí y sus versos por la libertadMartí’s Song for Freedom / Martí y sus versos por la libertad by Emma Otheguy
(Lee & Low ~ August 1, 2017)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Thanks to Lee and Low for the review copy of this title.

This bilingual biography is written in a poetic format with both the main story and the back matter written in English alongside Spanish. The illustrations are soft and colorful. For those familiar with Jose Marti, this is a beautiful tribute. For those unfamiliar with his life and work, this is a wonderful introduction in a very accessible format. The bilingual presentation is much appreciated for use in library collections and classrooms.


View all of my Goodreads reviews

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