There’s a frost forecast for Michigan tonight. I picked the last green tomatoes this afternoon and admired the trees’ new cloaks of red, yellow, and orange. The weather has taken a decidedly fall turn, and I’ve got a couple of new seasonal picture books to share (thanks to Candlewick Press for the review copies!)
Patricia Toht’s Pick a Pumpkin is a fun rhyming picture book that starts at a pumpkin patch, continues to a carving festival, and ends with a Jack O’Lantern glowing on Halloween night. The book speaks directly to the reader/listener, instructing them in all the ways of pumpkin preparation.
I especially love the descriptions of the choices for the pumpkin carver to consider. Here’s my favorite, describing the options for the mouth:
A kiss. A frown.
A toothy grin.
A zigzag gap
cut long and thin.
A smirk. A snarl.
An eerie O.
Or pointy fangs,
all in a row.
Great rhymes, great language, and loads of fun! And the illustrations by Jarvis are captivating and kid-friendly.
Kim Norman’s Give Me Back My Bones is not specifically a Halloween tale, but would also be a great one to share this time of year. And shiver me timbers, this clever book combines a little skeletal science with a pirate’s rhyming tale! I adore the clever bony descriptions with pirate references in each stanza, and the penultimate rhyme scheme.
Consider the scapula:
Who can spot my shoulder blade,
my shrugging jacket-holder blade,
my shiver-when-I’m-colder blade?
Oh, scapula, come back!
I can imagine kids poring over the illustrations, spotting the missing bones, and having fun showing-off their new knowledge of bone nomenclature. And as a writer, I am inspired to emulate this rhyme scheme…. some day!
And now, to shift away from autumnal thoughts, I’ve got some exciting winter/spring news to share. My upcoming picture book, On a Snow-Melting Day: Seeking Signs of Spring got a starred review from Kirkus! I am thrilled, gob-smacked, flabbergasted, astonished, and amazed! Click here to read Kirkus’ puddle-wonderful words.
Be sure to visit Alphabet Soup where Jama is hosting the Poetry Friday party, and sharing a few poems from Charles Ghigna’s new book, Dear Poet.