Ooko by Esme Shapiro

51th0ihczylI received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I am always excited about the opportunities I receive to read advanced copies of picture books. I read middle grade books with my oldest daughter, but my younger girls still enjoy reading picture books. I was especially excited about Ooko because one of my twins loves foxes.

Ooko was written and illustrated by Esme Shapiro.  . Ooko is a little fox, who has sticks to play with, but wants a friend. There are some funny moments that involve Ooko thinking that dogs are also foxes, and that humans are “debbies”. Ooko tries to make himself look like the other “foxes” so that the “debbies” will like him, but he discovers that he isn’t as content with the life that the other “foxes” are living. Will Ooko ever find a friend who makes him happy?

The illustrations are gorgeous. I’m in love with Shapiro’s style, and I’m ready to buy all the prints on her Etsy store. The illustrations are the perfect complement to this quirky and charming story. My girls loved seeing Ooko trying to make himself look like the other “foxes”.

Ooko is a sweet story with a some nice messages about the importance of friendship and being authentic. The tone is friendly and upbeat, and I couldn’t help but smile as we read through Ooko.

I would absolutely recommend Ooko. My girls loved this book, and I’m sure that we will be reading it many more times. They think that Ooko is very cute, and I’m sure that “Oh my crickets” is going to become a family catchphrase!

The Big Case (Zootopia) by Bill Scollon


I found Zootopia: The Big Case at our town library. This Level 3 “Step Into Reading” book was written by Bill Scollon.

The book follows the plot of the movie. Judy Hopps might be a little bunny, but she has big plans to become a police officer. Her wish comes true, and while on the job, she encounters local grifter Nick Wilde. Judy doesn’t think very highly of Nick, but she realizes that she needs his help to solve a big case. This unlikely duo must work together to figure out why animals keep disappearing. Read more

Maybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt & Alison McGhee

51fyq0arfrlI received a copy of this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

My oldest daughter is almost nine years old, and she has been helping me by reading the middle grade ARCs with me. We recently read Maybe a Fox, which is a collaboration between Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee.

Sylvie and Jules are sisters growing up in Vermont. They live with their father, and they have a shared best friend named Sam- Super Friend Sam. Jules loves collecting rocks, and Sylvie loves running.   One day, Sylvie runs so fast that she disappears, and Jules doesn’t know what to do without her beloved sister.

At the same time, a little baby fox is born. She knows that she is here for a purpose, and as she acclimates herself to the world, she tries to discover what that purpose is. Read more

Hickory Dickory: The Fox Race by AJ Smith and Walter Tyler

51ujlwtyjhlOne of my twins loves foxes. She is a rather lucky girl- foxes seem to be a popular animal, and so there are many different children’s clothing stores that have released fox items. We also have fox books, fox stuffed animals, and much more.

There is a dear sweet boy in her first grade class. This boy was also in her kindergarten class. He noticed that my daughter liked foxes, and he asked his mother if he could bring some of his fox books to school for her to borrow. She was very excited when she came home, and we have been reading these two fox books.

One of the books is Hickory Dickory: The Fox Race written by AJ Smith and Walter Tyler. I am not familiar with the Hickory Dickory series, and I’m so pleased to have discovered it. The premise of this book is simple: a fox likes to race, and he is faster than any other animal. He embarks on a trip around the world, and beats a variety of animals in their natural habitat. Will he be satisfied once he has raced (and beaten) animals on all seven continents? Read more

Mr. Postmouse’s Rounds by Marianne Dubuc

I received this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

My three girls love to read, so I was very excited about the prospect of reading Mr. Postmouse’s Rounds to them. This delightful picture book was written and illustrated by Marianne Dubuc.

The premise is simple: the reader is treated to watching Mr. Postmouse make his rounds through the neighborhood, which is a delightful place, with a wide variety of habitats. Mr. Postmouse delivers to the expected forest animals, but some of his customers live in the ocean, and others live on top of a snowy mountain. Mr. Postmouse does whatever it takes to make sure that the packages are delivered.
Mr. Postmouse does not encounter any adversity along the route, although he is grateful that he doesn’t have to deliver anything to Mr. Snake! Read more

Poppy’s Best Paper by Susan Eaddy

I received this book from Netgalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but as soon as I saw Poppy’s Best Paper, I knew that my three girls would love it. This delightful picture book was written by Susan Eaddy and illustrated by Rosilande Bonnet.

Poppy is an enthusiastic little rabbit full of joie de vivre. Some might also call her “spirited”. Poppy wants to be a writer when she grows up, so when her class receives an assignment to write about what they want to be when they grow up, Poppy doesn’t spend a lot of time on her paper, but she is sure that she is going to be the one whose paper is read aloud by the teacher. When she isn’t picked, she huffs and doesn’t congratulate her best friend, whose paper was the one read aloud. When this scenario is repeated the next day, Poppy throws a tantrum and continues to misbehave at home. Can she pull herself and write the perfect paper? Read more