Hot Off The Press! New Picture Books (8)

This is a feature that I do weekly called Hot Off The Press!  based on my weekly visits to Vroman's Bookstore and checking out their wall of new picture books.  Here are the 4 new releases that stood out from the pile this week: 

Diego Rivera: His World and Ours
Author/Illustrator: Duncan Tonatiuh
Publisher: Abrahms Books (May 1, 2011)
Audience: Grades 2nd to 5th

This book talks about Diego Rivera's art, what influenced him, and how his style developed over time.  The illustrations are lovely and supports the text well.   The story also proposes what Rivera may have painted if he were painting today and compared it to the pieces that he had painted. I am going out on a limb here and suggesting that this will likely get a serious look by this year's Pura Belpre committee.

The Quite Contrary Man: A True American Tale
Author: Patricia Rusch Hyatt
Illustrator: Kathryn Brown
Publisher: Abrahms Books (May 1, 2011)
Audience: Grades 2nd to 5th

"Beard" Palmer stood up for the right to keep his beard despite being thrown in jail as a consequence for refusing to shave it off.  When I first picked up this title, I was expecting a story about an unpleasant person.  I was pleasantly surprised for the way the story unfolded.  Palmer appears (at least by the way the tale is told) to have been well loved by his family but extremely stubborn when it came to things like standing up for his right to have facial hair or prisoner's conditions (which he managed to speak out against by sneaking out letters to his family).  Text and illustrations work well to tell Palmer's story and the author's note at the end provides readers with more information about the historical trends of facial hair and facts about Palmer.

Author/Illustrator: Sebastian Loth
Publisher: NorthSouth (May 1, 2011)
Audience: Pre-K to 1st

Clementine is a snail who loves anything round.  One day, she decides she wants to go to the moon. With the help of a worm named Paul, there are numerous failed attempts.  And though she doesn't quite make it there she does make a remarkable discovery in the process. The illustrations are gentle and the story about a very determined snail will make for an enjoyable read aloud.  


Author: Kelly DiPucchio
Illustrator: Matthew Myers
Publisher: Balzer & Bray (April 1, 2011)
Audience: Pre-k to 2nd

At one point, Clink was a snazzy state-of-the-art robot.  As with all things, newer and supposedly better models appear.  Each day, Clink watches as children clamor over the newer robots.  However, no one appears to want Clink, until one day a little boy comes into the story.  Will he be the one to adopt Clink as his own?  Myers illustrations play well against DiPucchio's text.  Another story that will do well as a read aloud for young children. 

Check out the book trailer for Clink here