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Product Type: Books
Award: Platinum
Review Year: 2013

 


2013 Award
The Official DC Super Hero Cookbook
(Matthew Mead, Downtown Bookworks $18.99 Score:)

Getting kids (especially boys) into cooking just got easier with this Super Hero themes cookbook. Illustrated in full color photos for eye appeal, some recipes call for food coloring, others use cookie cutters with Super Hero symbols (not included), and still others foods are decorated with colored sugar or paprika with the sturdy stencils that are in the back of the book. Kids will also like the punch-our action figures that can be taped to toothpicks and used to decorate foods. For picky eaters, this just might make certain foods more appealing. A Man of Steel Burger has a Superman shield made of cheese and ketchup; while red and yellow pepper stars are cut out to decorate Wonder Woman pizzas. If you are planning a themed party this will help you add shazam to the food choices. There are power drinks, mighty main dishes, sweet treats, hero sandwiches, naturally, and even breakfasts for a flying start! 

 

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
The Animal Book:A Collection of the Fastest, Fiercest, Toughest,Cleverest...
(by Steve Jenkins, Houghton Mifflin $21.99 Score:)

A stunning combination of collage animal images and information fill this big book with facts about the fastest, fiercest, cleverest and more creatures of the world. A fascinating book to dip into rather than one you must read from front to back. Want to know about how their eyes work? How they defend themselves? Their family life? Steve Jenkins goes well beyond the usual. He includes images and facts about creatures that push kids out of their comfort zone. For kids who like making art, Jenkins gives them a look at how he works to create the collages and a timeline for making a book. 6-10

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
Journey
(by Aaron Becker, Candlewick $15.99 Score:)

Remember little Harold with his Purple Crayon? Flash forward to a somewhat older girl with a magical red crayon in her lonely room. When her parents are too busy to give her the time of day, she draws her way out of her confining home and into a world where quick thinking and her magic crayon transport her on a wondrous journey that goes far beyond the imaginary world of Harold's. A wordless page-turning adventure that children can tell in their own words or silently to themselves. A keeper!

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Awards
The Tiny Seed Soft Book
(Eric Carle, Kids Preferred $9.99 Score:)

As fabric books go, this is one of the sweetest. The illustrations look like Eric Carle paintings and each page has something interesting to touch and explore. The sun has ribbon rays and a little worm is hiding under a flip-down mound of green. The silky fabric pages have crinkle sound built-in and the front cover has a chewy corner with textures for teething babies. A good laptime book with sensory learning to share with baby. A nice shower gift or going-for-a-visit goodie to bring along for baby.


SNAP: Fabric books like this one can survive tasting as well as early page turning. They are useful in helping kids learn how a book works from front to back and from left to right. Single objects on the page develop knowing and naming. You can expand on what is on the page by talking about the color, shape and looking for other objects in your home that are the same color. The sensory feedback on each page makes this a book children can enjoy alone as well as with you.

Age: Infants, Toddlers. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
The Silver Button
(Bob Graham, Candlewick $19 Score:)

On the same day that Jodie put a silver button on the duck she is drawing and her little brother took his first steps, Bob Graham gives us a world-wide view of all the things that are going on just outside their window and beyond. It's a big idea that may be more adult-like than one little children can put their arms around. That said, the illustrations are evocative and the idea is worth introducing to feed the imagination and a sense of the bigger world. To bring it closer to home, why not talk about what you thing others you know are doing at this very moment while you are sharing a storybook.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
Year of the Jungle
(by Suzanne Collins/ illus. James Promimos, Scholastic $17.99 Score:)

A remarkable memoir, written from the point of view of first grader whose father has gone off to war. Suzanne Collins'(author of Hunger Games) father was deployed for a year during the Viet Nam war.  But war is war, and for those who are dealing with or have known the separation and rollercoaster of emotions, this says it all. Even the happy ending is more realistic than most and better than the reality was for too many. 6 & up.

 

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Awards
Cathedral
(Houghton Mifflin $19.99 Score:)

Though fond memories of the original black and white illustrations linger, David Macaulay's revised text with full color illustrations will have a new life with another generation of readers. Reborn with felt-tip markers and colored pencils, Macaulay's work remains a visual feast that shows readers how builders of the 12th, 13th and 14th century created such timeless triumphs of beauty. Cathedral, originally published in 1973 won the Caldecott Honor, NY Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year and ALA Notable Book awards. If you have the originals, they are treasures to keep. For new history and architecture buffs, this and his revised Castle are special gifts for 10 and up.

Age: Later School Years, Tweens, Teens, Adult. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Award
Tallulah's Nutcracker
(Clarion $16.99 Score:)

When Tallulah is chosen to be a mouse with a real ballet company she has great dreams of being a star. To become a professional dancer is her dream. All goes well until the night opening night when Tallulah's dreams get tripped up. For all the little ballerinas who will be going to The Nutcracker ( or perhaps dancing in one) Tallulah's story will resonate and reassure them, too. Bravo, Tallulah! 4-8

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Awards
Castle
(By David Macaulay, Houghton Mifflin $19.99 Score:)

Though fond memories of the original black and white illustrations linger, David Macaulay's revised text with full color illustrations will have a new life with another generation of readers. Reborn with digital drawings drawn with felt-tip markers and colored pencils, Macaulay's work remains a visual feast. Castle, originally published in 1977 brings us once again to Lord Kevin's fictional castle and retraces its planning and construction. If you are lucky enough to have the originals, they are treasures to keep.  For new history and architecture buffs, this and his revised Cathedral are special gifts for 10 and up.

 

Age: Later School Years, Tweens. Award Year: 2013.

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2013 Awards
Grandfather's Journey
(by Allen Say, Houghton Mifflin $17.99 Score:)

Twenty years have passed since this moving classic was first published and won the Caldecott Award. Allen Say's stunning paintings capture a time past and tell the story of his grandfather's love for two countries and his longing to be in both. Though not all immigrants could or would return to the land they left behind, Say's story speaks to a deeper longing for the happy places and people we have loved, those places and people we keep in our hearts wherever we may be. Grandfather's Journey is set in both America and Japan, but it is a universal story of love and long—a multi-generational book about all of us. A new 30th anniversary edition is now available as a free audio download (read by the author) on the publisher's website.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2013.

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