It's Monday! What am I reading? From Picture Books to YA - March 10, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading? is hosted by Sheila of Book Journey.  Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers have adapted it to focus on Picture Books to Young Adult Books.

There are weeks where getting time to settle in for a longer book can be a challenge.  Sometimes even finishing a picture book can be a challenge. I am looking forward to spring break in another week and some time to actually read some of the MG and YA novels that are piling up.  Over the weekend, I managed to squeeze in a couple of hours to tackle a pile of picture books and early readers.  If you want to see the full list, click here.  

Here are the top picks from the pile....

You are My Baby: Garden by Lorena Siminovich (Chronicle Books, March 25, 2014) - The You are My Baby board book series for infants and toddlers is a two in one board book.  The lower left hand corner is a smaller board book incorporated into the larger one. I do not usually get super excited about board books, but this one is well done.  Of course, it's Chronicle Books and their art department is top-notch when it comes to unique designs.

You are My Baby: Ocean by Lorena Siminovich (Chronicle Books, March 25, 2014) - This companion book to the one noted above is just as well done. Definitely worth giving these as gifts to the infants and toddler readers in your life.

Maple by Lori Nichols (Nancy Paulsen Books, February 20, 2014) - Nichols captures a special relationship between a little girl and her tree in this beautifully illustrated picture book. Also, good for preschoolers with a new baby at home.

Peggy by Anna Walker (Clarion Books, March 4, 2014) - Some picture books are quirky and Peggy is one of them. A chicken out on an adventure in the city. Yep, it will be interesting to see what children think of this one, but adults will get a chuckle out of it and admire the artwork as well.

Penguin in Peril by Helen Hancocks (Templar Books, February 11, 2014) - Another quirky book that will hold the attention of the inquisitive reader. I enjoyed how the penguin out smarts the cats.

Do Not Open! The Story of Pandora's Box by Joan Holub; Illustrated by Dani Jones (Simon Spotlight, March 1, 2014) - Easy Readers are always a bit of a challenge to write and finding ones that are stand outs among the spinning racks is not easy.  I thought Holub does an admirable job simplifying Pandora's Box for beginning readers that provides readers with readable text and a good story.

Robot, Go Bot! A Comic Reader by Dana Meachen Rau; Illustrated by Wook Jin Jung (Random House, June 25, 2013) - If Level 2 easy readers are a challenge to find, Level 1 readers are even harder.  Beginning readers will love this one.  Simple but fun.

Guppy Up! by Jonathan Fenske (Penguin Young Readers, February 7, 2013) - Fenske has a good sense of what beginning readers need in a Level 1 reader.  Guppy combines early concepts with readable text.

So, what are you reading?