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September Bookshelf


September Bookshelf

By Jane Muller

I Spy ABC: Totally Crazy Letters
By Manuela Ancutici
Learning their ABCs is the foundation for early literacy and this beautifully illustrated picture book provides a solid start by appealing to a child’s curiosity. They are encouraged to search each letter of the alphabet and learn about colours and counting while developing vocabulary, memory and attention. The amazing pictures include a cornucopia of toys, food, items from nature and more, combined with cheerful rhymes that set the reader’s task to find specific items based on hints. There are also hundreds of other items to discover. This is a great book for reading together or alone.
Ages 3 to 7 – Publisher Firefly – $14.95

I Quit Grade One!
By Nancy Wilcox Richards, illustrator Tom Goldsmith
As children prepare to go back to school they will no doubt be wondering about their new teacher. Many will relate to having a teacher that they have loved in the past and might worry that their new teacher just won’t measure up. Stella is able to put those concerns into words and actions and discovers that she might not have anything to worry about. Her note to the school principal yields surprising results and might inspire your child to use his or her own words to help quell their back-to-school worries. Ages 3 to 8 – Publisher Scholastic – $7.99 paperback

Barnaby Never Forgets
By Pierre Collet-Derby
Everyone forgets something some time, even those who claim to have amazing memory skills. Barnaby is one of those people. The little guy remembers so much, most of the time. He remembers to brush his teeth and feed his grasshoppers, and he always, always remembers when it’s ice-cream night but he does forget something really important. In this funny and familiar tale of remembering what you’ve forgotten and learning to laugh at yourself, the author does a wonderful job of holding up a mirror to all of us. Ages 5 to 8 – Publisher Candlewick Press – $23 hardcover

Groovy Joe Dance Party Countdown
By Eric Litwin, illustrator Tim Lichtenheld
Groovy Joe’s music isn’t likely to be added to many adult playlists but it will appeal to young kids. The music can be downloaded so that kids can join the dance party featured in the lively picture book. The text includes lots of repetition that enables little kids to “read” it themselves. Added to the dance party are some simple math facts that gently infuse concepts into the rhyming, musical writing style. This is a entertaining offering from #1 New York Times bestsellers Eric Litwin (Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes) and Tom Lichtenheld (Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site). Ages 4 to 8 – Publisher Orchard Books (Scholastic) – $17.99 US

Meditate with Me A Step-by-Step Mindfulness Journey
By Mariam Gates, illustrator Margarita Surnaite
This might just be the solution for kids who are anxious about going to school this fall, or about anything else in their lives that causes unease. This simple and fun guide to mindfulness is the perfect introduction for young children. Children are taught how to focus on their breath, on the sensations in their body, and on the sounds around them to help them relax, settle their busy minds, and understand their emotions. Five cute animal friends help illustrate the step-by-step directions that can be shared by parents and children at home, or by teachers and students in the classroom. Ages 4 to 8 – Publisher Dial Books for Young Readers (Penguin) – $23.99 hardcover

Fatima and the Clementine Thieves
By Mareille Messier, illustrator Gabrielle Grimard
Even children and creatures as small as spiders can take on seemingly impossible odds as this story out of Africa illustrates. Readers learn about the importance of a crop to a grandfather and granddaughter and the devastation that results from an attack on their clementine orchard. All seems to be going sour but it is really a sweet tale by this Toronto-based writer who is a 2016 Governor General’s Literary Award nominee. Ages 3 to 7 – Publisher Red Deer Press – $18.95

The Tiny Hero of Ferny Creek Library
By Linda Bailey, illustrator Victoria Jamieson
We’ve heard of bookworms but how about a book bug that loves to read and is courageous enough to save the school library. Readers are hooked from the beginning of the heart-warming tale of a shiny green bug named Eddie, who is encouraged by the brave deeds done by small creatures such as Stuart Little and Charlotte from Charlotte’s Web as he attempts to save his aunt Min. She hasn’t been seen back at the family home behind a classroom chalkboard since her last trek to the far-off school library. The compelling bug’s eye perspective is enhanced by the black-and-white illustrations from a Newbery Honour Medalist and New York Times-bestselling author-artist. This wonderful book would be great to read-aloud. Ages 8 to 12 – Publisher Tundra – $19.99 hardcover

Hilde Cracks the Case: Hero Dog!
By Hilde Lysiak
This series is part of Scholastic’s early chapter book line Branches, aimed at newly independent readers. It provides easy-to-read text, interesting content, fast-paced plots, and illustrations on every page, which is a recipe for developing reading skills. The series features 9-year old crime reporter, Hilde Lysiak, inspired by news stories Hilde wrote in real life. Readers will be dying to find out who stole the cupcakes in this first book of the series. Ages  – 7 to 9 – Publisher Scholastic – $8.99 paperback

Artsy Mistake Mystery
By Sylvia McNicoll
The fact that this award-winning Burlington, Ontario author has published more than 30 books provides a clue as to the quality of the second in the “Great Mistake Mystery Series”. At the centre of the mystery is dog-walker Stephen Nobel. He tends to be a little anxious at the best of times but things ramp up when two bizarre events happen on the way to school one day. He ends up on a ride that features dognappers, false accusations, theft and more. It’s fun to live inside Stephen’s head for a while. Ages 9 to 11 – Publisher Dundurn – $8.99 paperback