For any kid who has spent part of the day facedown on the ground in utter defeat, Georgie and his pals make great...

GEORGIE'S BEST BAD DAY

From the Georgie and Friends series

In the second Georgie and Friends book from Chan, a very bad day goes from calamity to a memorably good time.

Georgie, a striped gray cat, wakes up on the wrong side of the bed and finds he’s not alone in starting the day badly. All his friends, including Feta the dog and Lester the mouse, are having some kind of minor crisis, whether it’s forgetting breakfast, sitting on fresh paint, or missing the bus. The friends decide to pool their luck, but an attempt to bake a cake proves disastrous. It’s only after a moment of humor involving a large jar and Georgie’s head that the animal friends are able to laugh about their situation and steer into the turn of their unlucky day. That, of course, turns “THE WORST BAD DAY EVER” into something much more enjoyable. Chan’s anthropomorphic characters are expressive no matter what the species, and the book does a fine job switching gears from frustration to fun. An 11-step double-page diagram at the center of the story showing just how the baking goes wrong is a well-executed highlight. As a bonus for those who enjoy the story, the author credit reveals that at least two of the book’s characters are based on Chan’s real-life pets.

For any kid who has spent part of the day facedown on the ground in utter defeat, Georgie and his pals make great commiserating companions. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: April 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-62672-270-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Roaring Brook Press

Review Posted Online: Jan. 17, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2017

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A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends.

GOOD NIGHT, LITTLE BLUE TRUCK

Is it a stormy-night scare or a bedtime book? Both!

Little Blue Truck and his good friend Toad are heading home when a storm lets loose. Before long, their familiar, now very nervous barnyard friends (Goat, Hen, Goose, Cow, Duck, and Pig) squeeze into the garage. Blue explains that “clouds bump and tumble in the sky, / but here inside we’re warm and dry, / and all the thirsty plants below / will get a drink to help them grow!” The friends begin to relax. “Duck said, loud as he could quack it, / ‘THUNDER’S JUST A NOISY RACKET!’ ” In the quiet after the storm, the barnyard friends are sleepy, but the garage is not their home. “ ‘Beep!’ said Blue. ‘Just hop inside. / All aboard for the bedtime ride!’ ” Young readers will settle down for their own bedtimes as Blue and Toad drop each friend at home and bid them a good night before returning to the garage and their own beds. “Blue gave one small sleepy ‘Beep.’ / Then Little Blue Truck fell fast asleep.” Joseph’s rich nighttime-blue illustrations (done “in the style of [series co-creator] Jill McElmurry”) highlight the power of the storm and capture the still serenity that follows. Little Blue Truck has been chugging along since 2008, but there seems to be plenty of gas left in the tank.

A sweet reminder that it’s easy to weather a storm with the company and kindness of friends. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 22, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-85213-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: HMH Books

Review Posted Online: June 23, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2019

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A sweet, tender and charming experience to read aloud or together.

HEY, DUCK!

A clueless duckling tries to make a new friend.

He is confused by this peculiar-looking duck, who has a long tail, doesn’t waddle and likes to be alone. No matter how explicitly the creature denies he is a duck and announces that he is a cat, the duckling refuses to acknowledge the facts.  When this creature expresses complete lack of interest in playing puddle stomp, the little ducking goes off and plays on his own. But the cat is not without remorse for rejecting an offered friendship. Of course it all ends happily, with the two new friends enjoying each other’s company. Bramsen employs brief sentences and the simplest of rhymes to tell this slight tale. The two heroes are meticulously drawn with endearing, expressive faces and body language, and their feathers and fur appear textured and touchable. Even the detailed tree bark and grass seem three-dimensional. There are single- and double-page spreads, panels surrounded by white space and circular and oval frames, all in a variety of eye-pleasing juxtapositions. While the initial appeal is solidly visual, young readers will get the gentle message that friendship is not something to take for granted but is to be embraced with open arms—or paws and webbed feet.

A sweet, tender and charming experience to read aloud or together. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Jan. 22, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-375-86990-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Nov. 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2012

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