Argyle Fox by Marie Letourneau

Argyle Fox by Marie Letourneau Argyle Fox by Marie Letourneau
Published by Tanglewood on March 14, 2017
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Picture Book
Pages: 32
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Argyle Fox, with his signature style, wants to play outside on a springtime day, but the wind is wreaking havoc with his fun and games. As soon as he builds a card tower, climbs into a giant spider web, or takes up his pirate sword, here comes the wind: Woosh!

Mama Fox tells grumpy Argyle that if he thinks long enough, he will come up with something to do. Following his mother’s suggestion and inspired by her knitting, he works all the pieces of his day together and creates the perfect solution.

The story of Argyle teaches that failure is often a path to success and celebrates perseverance, creative thinking, and an old-fashioned springtime activity.

We woke up this morning to more snow and cold temperatures. Ohio’s weather has been crazy lately. I swear it was almost 60 yesterday. I needed some spring and Argyle Fox provides just that. It’s a windy spring day and Argyle Fox wants to play outside, but the wind ruins everything he tries to do, until he comes up with a solution.

It’s a fun cute book. I like the ingenuity it encourages. On the other hand, I don’t think wind should really ruin playing pirate or knight and I don’t think it was nice for the other woodland creatures to discourage his imaginative play. You don’t need a cardboard castle to pretend to fight a dragon. Or a paper hat to be a pirate. And I’m pretty sure building a tower of cards outside is never a good idea.

But, if the wind hadn’t made him grumpy during his other games, he wouldn’t have been able to figure out the perfect thing to play with or have been able to share his idea with his friends.

I like the illustrations.  The colors are nice, not overly bright, but not dull either. The cover gives a good example of the style. I also like how the pictures show us what happens when the wind blows, the text doesn’t have to.

It’s a good spring book and I think kids will be able to relate to Argyle Fox. He plays games they’re familiar with and I can even see using his “project” as a start for one of your own.


About Marie Letourneau

Marie Letourneau lives with her family on Long Island, NY. Marie studied fine arts at Hoftsra University’s New College where she earned her BFA. In 2006, her first book as both author and illustrator entitled, “The Mice of Bistrot des Sept Freres” (Tanglewood Books) won ForeWord Magazine’s Book of the Year Award, Bronze Medal. She has done design work for (and appeared on) The Nate Berkus Show, and The Revolution with fashion icon Tim Gunn. In 2014, Marie was a finalist in the Martha Stewart American Made Awards for her stationery shop Le French Circus, on Etsy. She loves animals, beets, roller skating and plays roller derby. Marie is married with two children, they have two dogs and a cat.

Good Morning, Superman! by Michael Dahl

Good Morning, Superman! by Michael Dahl Good Morning, Superman! by Michael Dahl
Illustrator: Omar Lozano
Published by Capstone on March 1, 2017
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Picture Book
Pages: 32
Format: eARC
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Look, up in the sky! It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s the . . . SUN!

When morning comes, a young boy must prepare for his day, faster than a speeding bullet. Follow along as he leaps tall buildings (jumps out of bed) in a single bound, dons his heroic uniform (his clothes), and faces his greatest weakness (Kryptonite-colored toothpaste). Then it’s up, up, and away to daycare! Includes a morning routine checklist.

Good Morning, Superman! is a really cute book. A little boy is getting ready for the day and everything he does is mirrored by something Superman does. For example, as the little boy gets dressed, Superman reveals his costume. The boy eats his breakfast, gathering his strength, as Superman flies above the buildings, getting ready to fight the bad guys. Even the boy’s sister gets in on the act in her Supergirl costume, handing him his lunchbox, because helpers are super heroes too.

The illustrations are bright and fun, just like the cover. It’s a perfect book for any superhero loving pre-schooler. It may even help with the morning routine.

About Michael Dahl

Michael Dahl is the prolific author of the bestselling Goodnight Baseball picture book and more than 200 other books for children and young adults. He has won the AEP Distinguished Achievement Award three times for his nonfiction, a Teacher’s Choice award from Learning magazine, and a Seal of Excellence from the Creative Child Awards. And he has won awards for his board books for the earliest learners, Duck Goes Potty and Bear Says “Thank You!” Dahl has written and edited numerous graphic novels for younger readers, authored the Library of Doom adventure series, the Dragonblood books, Trollhunters, and the Hocus Pocus Hotel mystery/comedy series. Dahl has spoken at schools, libraries, and conferences across the US and the UK, including ALA, AASL, IRA, and Renaissance Learning. He currently lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota in a haunted house.
He also writes under aliases Chris Carey, Rick Thomas, and Mark Ziegler.

On Our Way to Oyster Bay by Monica Kulling

On Our Way to Oyster Bay by Monica Kulling On Our Way to Oyster Bay: Mother Jones and Her March for Children's Rights by Monica Kulling
Illustrator: Felicita Sala
Published by Kids Can Press on September 6, 2016
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Picture Book, History
Pages: 32
Format: eARC
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Though eight-year-old Aidan and his friend Gussie want to go to school, like many other children in 1903, they work twelve hours, six days a week, at a cotton mill in Pennsylvania instead. So when the millworkers decide to go on strike, the two friends join the picket line. Maybe now life will change for them. But when a famous labor reformer named Mother Jones comes to hear of the millworkers' demands, she tells them they need to do more than just strike. Troubled by all she had seen, Mother Jones wanted to end child labor. But what could she do? Why, organize a children's march and bring the message right to President Theodore Roosevelt at his summer home in Oyster Bay, of course!

Good points:

Excellent introduction to Mother Jones and her cause. To be honest, I had never heard of her before and found her fascinating.

Told from a kid’s point of view, allowing children to relate

Takes others’ problems, like child labor, and reminds us that Americans have dealt with the same issues

Very good artwork, detailed and added to the story

Includes factual information for parents/adults at the end

Gives a call to action encouraging children that they can make a difference in the world

Negative points:

I can’t see this one being any kids favorite. It’s good and historical, just not engrossing.

May need some explanations, depending. Some kids may not be familiar with the sewing machinery terms, some may not even be familiar with what a strike is.

It’s disappointing that the kids don’t actually get to meet President Roosevelt.


A good one to borrow from the library.

A must-buy for an elementary school classroom library.


About Monica Kulling

Monica Kulling was born in Vancouver, British Columbia. She received a BA in creative writing from the University of Victoria. Monica Kulling has published twenty-six fiction and nonfiction books for children, including picture books, poetry, and biographies. She is best known for introducing biography to children just learning to read and has written about Harriet Tubman, Houdini, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Amelia Earhart among others. Monica Kulling lives in Toronto, Canada.

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