A sturdy effort from a small press focused on food literacy.

ZORA'S ZUCCHINI

After planting a dozen free zucchini plants, Zora finds ways to share and trade her bumper crop with others in her community.

“That’s going to be a lot of zucchini,” her father opines as Zora digs, plants, and waters. “We’ll eat it!” she assures him—and as the harvest rolls in, they do. In bread and soup; for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. By August, even perpetually rosy Zora realizes that this is too much food for her family. She swaps zucchini for tomatoes with Mrs. Thompson next door, then loads up the basket of her bike, giving zucchini away to neighbors. Still—there’s more. Enlisting the help of her sister and brother, Zora arranges a Saturday Garden Swap. After a slow start, neighbors come through, swapping everything from apricots to peppers. “Zora traded and traded until all her zucchini was gone.” While adult readers might scoff at the notion that Zora would be the only gardener in the neighborhood growing rampant zucchini plants, kids should warm to Zora’s predicament and resourceful problem-solving. Raff’s digitally colored watercolors have a cartoonlike, naïve quality. Hands have four fingers, and facial features are depicted as curved lines and dots. The spreads provide plenty of detail for children to notice—such as a cat’s displeasure at getting splashed by the watering can.

A sturdy effort from a small press focused on food literacy. (ideas for dealing with extra garden produce) (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 17, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-9836615-7-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Readers to Eaters

Review Posted Online: June 29, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2015

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An invitation to wonder, imagine and look at everything (humans included) in a new way.

NOAH CHASES THE WIND

A young boy sees things a little differently than others.

Noah can see patterns in the dust when it sparkles in the sunlight. And if he puts his nose to the ground, he can smell the “green tang of the ants in the grass.” His most favorite thing of all, however, is to read. Noah has endless curiosity about how and why things work. Books open the door to those answers. But there is one question the books do not explain. When the wind comes whistling by, where does it go? Noah decides to find out. In a chase that has a slight element of danger—wind, after all, is unpredictable—Noah runs down streets, across bridges, near a highway, until the wind lifts him off his feet. Cowman’s gusty wisps show each stream of air turning a different jewel tone, swirling all around. The ribbons gently bring Noah home, setting him down under the same thinking tree where he began. Did it really happen? Worthington’s sensitive exploration leaves readers with their own set of questions and perhaps gratitude for all types of perspective. An author’s note mentions children on the autism spectrum but widens to include all who feel a little different.

An invitation to wonder, imagine and look at everything (humans included) in a new way. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 14, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-60554-356-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Redleaf Lane

Review Posted Online: Feb. 3, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2015

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A culturally intricate slice of a lupine courier’s life.

¡VAMOS! LET'S GO TO THE MARKET

From the ¡Vamos! series

Little Lobo and his dog, Bernabé, journey through a Mexican mercado delivering diverse goods to a variety of booths.

With the aid of red words splattered throughout the spreads as labels, Raúl the Third gives an introduction to Spanish vocabulary as Little Lobo, an anthropomorphic wolf, leaves his house, fills his cart with objects from his warehouse, and delivers them to the market’s vendors. The journey also serves as a crash course in Mexican culture, as the images are packed with intertextual details such as food, traditional games, and characters, including Cantinflas, Frida Khalo, and Juan Gabriel. Readers acquainted with Raúl the Third’s characters from his Lowriders series with author Cathy Camper will appreciate cameos from familiar characters. As he makes his rounds, Little Lobo also collects different artifacts that people offer in exchange for his deliveries of shoe polish, clothespins, wood, tissue paper, paintbrushes, and a pair of golden laces. Although Raúl the Third departs from the ball-pen illustrations that he is known for, his depiction of creatures and critters peppering the borderland where his stories are set remains in his trademark style. The softer hues in the illustrations (chosen by colorist Bay) keep the busy compositions friendly, and the halftone patterns filling the illustrations create foregrounds and backgrounds reminiscent of Roy Lichtenstein’s pointillism.

A culturally intricate slice of a lupine courier’s life. (glossary) (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: April 2, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-328-55726-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Versify/HMH

Review Posted Online: Jan. 15, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

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