Saturday, March 4, 2017

Farm Friends

Spring brings new titles full of farm animals and hi-jinks.

Ah, the sweet smell of – ah... AH-CHOO – flowers. Sorry. Spring is in the air and the Bradford Pear Trees are in full bloom. If you head to the bookstore to escape your allergies, you are sure to see shelves filled with stories about animals. I've picked a few to highlight in posts for the next week. Enjoy.

The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet!
By Carmen Agra Deedy
Illustrated by Eugene Yelchin
Best For: Ages 4 – 8
          Be careful what you wish for. La Paz is a very happy and very loud village. In fact, there is so much noise the townspeople decide that some peace and quiet would be nice. So they elect a new mayor that promises change. And change is what they get. Soon, a little peace and quiet turns into laws prohibiting all noise. Seven years later a vibrant rooster enters the city and refuses to quit singing his song. The mayor takes the rooster’s house, food, and family but the rooster refuses to quit.
Told in the style of classic folk tales, The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet! illustrates the idea that one voice can make a difference. The illustrations are bright and vibrant, adding a wellspring of energy to the tale. Although teachers may not want to emphasize the end notes that glorify individuals who won’t be quiet, this book is good for read-aloud story time.
What’s good: High energy folk tale with vibrant illustrations.
What’s bad: Young children may misunderstand the message about speaking out.

Duck on a Tractor
By David Shannon
Best For: Ages 4 - 8

          A bike just isn’t enough for Duck anymore – not after he sees a massive red tractor. It’s time to go to town on the tractor. All of Duck’s farmyard friends pile on top. The townsfolk are baffled by the sight. Wouldn’t you be if you saw a slew of farm animals riding a tractor down Main Street? Duck on a Tractor is a tour de force of Shannon’s painterly illustration style. He uses exaggerated facial expressions for animals and humans alike, and throws in aggressive amounts of color to accentuate the story’s fun and chaos. The down home language in the text keeps the story moving nicely and begs to be read aloud. Like Duck on a Bike, Shannon delivers with this raucous new Duck tale.
What’s good: Energetic humor with plenty to see in every illustration.
What’s bad: Maybe a little too similar to Duck on a Bike.