Tuesday, August 30, 2016

PICTURE BOOK REVIEWS: Terrible dragons, the Bobo Road, library monsters, and awesome pets!


Fatima and Galo help their father load his minibus in preparation for traveling the Bobo Road.  The children continue to load the bus as they continue down the road and things get more crowded.  Each stop on the road (Lake Tengrela, Karfiguela Falls, Domes of Fabedougou) provides a glimpse into the wildness and beauty of this road through Burkina Faso in Western Africa.  The gorgeous illustrations provide a beautiful complement to the text.  With the need for more diverse books in children's literature, I was delighted to come across this one.  The book provides a glimpse into a way of life and geography very different than the one most children in the United States are familiar with. Books like this one fill an important niche in children's literature, one that I love to explore.


Dragon behaves terribly.  He spits on cupcakes, plays tricks on people, and takes candy from baby unicorns.  The king and townspeople are very frustrated and angry with the dragon and seek to tame the dragon.  But they fail.  Only when a young lad uses a story to catch the dragon's attention does it become possible to tame this dragon's terrible behavior.  DiPucchio has written a book that would work well for storytimes about dragons, the power of story, and making friends. Pizzoli's adorable illustrations make a nice complement to DiPucchio's great story, especially with fun details like graffiti on the castle walls, and toilet paper draped over the castle.  This makes for a fun read that I plan to use with my students to talk about the power of story and kindness.  A winner through and through.


Oskar and Theodore love to go to the library each Saturday to read in the quiet space.  But on this particular Saturday things take a turn for the loud, when a five-headed monster shows up looking for things to eat.  Despite their best efforts, Oskar and Theodore are unable to avoid the monster and must come up with a strategy to avoid becoming the monster's lunch.  I love the fact that the librarian is the one who comes to the rescue. ;)  The banter between the boy, bear, and the monster heads provides plenty of humor along with the theme of storytelling being a powerful tool along with donuts.  A cute book that I plan to use with my students to encourage book check out and using quiet voices in the library.


"Some pets sit. Some pets stay. Some pets fetch."  Thus starts this homage to pets large and small and the fun they inspire.  As the pet show goes on the reader gets to experience the ins and outs of the animals and their characteristics.  The use of verbs and adjectives makes this a great teaching book as well as just a fun book to read.  The detailed illustrations are adorable and give the reader/listener a great deal to notice.  The double page spread at the end identifies the names of each of the different animals that appear throughout the book.  A fun book for storytime as well as a lesson on language, this book honors the place that pets have in our lives.


  1. The illustrations for Bobo Road and Some Pets look amazing. I love it when a picture book has gorgeous artwork. It's like you could just melt into the pages and stay there forever. All these books sound cute!

    Dena @ Batch of Books

    1. I agree. I always let out a sigh of pleasure after enjoying great picture books like these.


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