Jabari succeeds, and so does this book.

JABARI TRIES

Jabari works hard to build a gizmo that flies, but his best modification may be inspired by his partner.

When Jabari announces his machine will fly “all the way across” their spacious, landscaped yard, he is certain he won’t need any help. While his father gardens and his younger sister plays, Jabari builds a launch ramp, sends his machine through, and…crash! Little Nika wants in on the fun, but Jabari is “concentrating.” He takes inspiration from inventors and engineers, who use creativity and hard work to solve their problems. He plans, sketches, builds, and tries and tries again. He lets Nika help out, reluctantly at first, and when he gets so frustrated he wants to cry, he takes his father’s advice: gathering his patience and blowing away his “muddy feelings.” When he tries once more, with a clear head and support from his pint-sized partner, he discovers a change that makes his machine—and his confidence—soar. This generously sized picture book offers a lovely picture of mentorship and healthy relationships in the context of a thriving Black family with dark skin tones. Jabari’s emotional ups and downs will be familiar to young children, and his hard-won success feels triumphant. Cornwall’s clean, clear illustrations use patterns, green hues, and white space to deliver a variety of effective scenes.

Jabari succeeds, and so does this book. (Picture book. 3-9)

Pub Date: Sept. 8, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5362-0716-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: June 30, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2020

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A TREE IS NICE

A nursery school approach to a general concept. "A tree is nice"- Why? Because..."We can climb the tree...play pirate ship...pick the apples...build playhouses out of the leaves. A tree is nice to hang a swing in...Birds build nests in trees... Sticks come off trees...People have picnics there too"...etc. etc. One follows the give and take of a shared succession of reactions to what a tree- or trees- can mean. There is a kind of poetic simplicity that is innate in small children. Marc Simont has made the pictures, half in full color, and they too have a childlike directness (with an underlying sophistication that adults will recognize). Not a book for everyone -but those who like it will like it immensely. The format (6 x 11) makes it a difficult book for shelving, so put it in the "clean hands" section of flat books. Here's your first book for Arbor Day use- a good spring and summer item.

Pub Date: June 15, 1956

ISBN: 978-0-06-443147-7

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Harper

Review Posted Online: July 17, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1956

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A good bet for the youngest bird-watchers.

MAMA BUILT A LITTLE NEST

Echoing the meter of “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” Ward uses catchy original rhymes to describe the variety of nests birds create.

Each sweet stanza is complemented by a factual, engaging description of the nesting habits of each bird. Some of the notes are intriguing, such as the fact that the hummingbird uses flexible spider web to construct its cup-shaped nest so the nest will stretch as the chicks grow. An especially endearing nesting behavior is that of the emperor penguin, who, with unbelievable patience, incubates the egg between his tummy and his feet for up to 60 days. The author clearly feels a mission to impart her extensive knowledge of birds and bird behavior to the very young, and she’s found an appealing and attractive way to accomplish this. The simple rhymes on the left page of each spread, written from the young bird’s perspective, will appeal to younger children, and the notes on the right-hand page of each spread provide more complex factual information that will help parents answer further questions and satisfy the curiosity of older children. Jenkins’ accomplished collage illustrations of common bird species—woodpecker, hummingbird, cowbird, emperor penguin, eagle, owl, wren—as well as exotics, such as flamingoes and hornbills, are characteristically naturalistic and accurate in detail.

A good bet for the youngest bird-watchers.   (author’s note, further resources) (Informational picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 18, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4424-2116-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Beach Lane/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 4, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2014

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