October/November 2017

Holiday Books
for Preschool


written by Tony Johnston, illus. by Rich Deas, (Scholastic Books, 2004, 2009 Board), 28p, Ages 3-5


written by Karma Wilson, illus. by Jane Chapman, (Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2012), 40p, Ages 2-6


written by Bethany Roberts, illus. by Doug Cushman, (Clarion Books, 2001), 32p, Ages 4-7


Holiday Books for
Ages 4-8


written & illus. by Dav Pilkey, (Orchard Books, 1990), 32p, Ages 4-8


TURK AND RUNT: A Thanksgiving Comedy
written by Lisa Wheeler, illus. by Frank Ansley, (Aladdin), 32p, Ages 4-7


written/illus. by Helen Cooper, (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2007), 32p, Ages 4-8


THANK YOU,SARAH: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving
written by Laurie Halse Anderson, illus. by Mat Faulkner, (Simon & Schuster, 2012), 40p, Ages 5-10

Holiday Book for
Ages 8-12

written by Robert D. San Souci, illus. by Daniel San Souci, (Doubleday Books, 1992), 32p, Ages 6-10

Holiday Books for
Ages 10-13


written by Louise Arnold, (Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2006), 192p, Ages 9-12

Holiday Books for
Ages 12-15


written by Sheila Turnage, (Kathy Dawson Books, 2015), 368p, Ages 12-15


For more information on great children's literature for reading to children and by children, visit us at:


Bringing you
books that:

Touch the Heart,
Color the Imagination, and
Delight the Mind

Welcome to The Storytellers, a monthly newsletter of outstanding children's literature to read and read aloud from preschoolers to teens.

The best children's books contain imaginative stories, memorable characters, beautiful illustrations, and lyrical language. Well-written stories should contain heroes and role models to imitate. Whatever the genre, a great book should be an enjoyable read, and contain heart, humor, hope, and a happy ending.

Fall is here. The leaves are turning, the pumpkins are ripe, and, of course, it's a great time for storytelling.

For more information on reading to children, great books to read and read aloud, and a summer reading program, log on to our web site at www.tchliteracy.com.


MOTOR GOOSE: Rhymes that Go!
written by Rebecca Colby, illus. by Jef Kaminsky, (Feiwel and Friends, July 2017, $16.99,
ISBN 978-1-250-10193-8), 32p, Ages 2-5

Rhymes, vehicles, and hilarious illustrations combine for an enjoyable Mother Goose collection of twenty-three rewritten familiar rhymes. From poems about a clunker, sub, tow truck, and taxi to a digger, crane, helicopter and more, kids will love singing, chanting, or just listening to these wonderful reimagining's. Each poem has a helpful hint underneath showing the original name.

"This Little Steam Train (This Little Piggy) - This little steam train climbed a mountain. / This little steam train didn't roam. / This little steam train had passengers, / This little steam train had none. / And this little steam train whistled, / "Whoo, whoo, whoo!"all the way home.

The rhymes, which progress through the day and into the night, also make for a clever bedtime read.


written/illus. by Sandra Boynton, (Little Simon, Brd $5.99, Aug. 2017, ISBN 978-1-4814-9768-8), 18p., Ages 2+

In this latest addition to the Pookie series, young listeners will watch Little Pookie discover 10 things that his mama knows about him. In a clever rhyming and counting book, mama tells him, "1. You like macaroni. / 2. You're suspicious of peas. / 3. You are happy outdoors / with your ears in the breeze." And, of course, number 11 is the best one!


written/illus. by Karel Hayes, (Down East Books, $16.95, Oct. 2015, ISBN 978-1-60893-454-6), 32p, Ages 3-7

One fall New Hampshire weekend, a family drives to their cottage in the mountains where they ride bikes to the county fair, play boardwalk games, pet barnyard animals, ride the Ferris wheel, and enjoy cotton candy. Unbeknownst to them, a bear family follows and sneaks into the closed midway at night to enjoy hot dogs, free pumpkins, and ride the Ferris wheel. "It's only a weekend and too soon time to leave, but the cottage by the water will not be empty for long." The bears move in with their pumpkins, make costumes, and enjoy trick-or-treating. At Thanksgiving they catch turkeys and cook dinner for everyone to enjoy (turkeys included). Kids will love the humorous illustrations of two families enjoying a special New England autumn.

Ages 4-8

written/illus. by Mike Curato, (Henry Holt, Aug. 2017, $17.99, 1SBN 978-1-62779-640-8), 40p, Ages 4-7

This fourth book in the charming Little Elliot series finds the little polka-dotted elephant and his best friend, Mouse, needing a break from the Manhattan's frantic pace and lifestyle of the 1940's. Hopping a bus for the countryside, they soak up the autumn landscape, eat apples from a nearby farm, and play hide-and-seek. When Mouse never returns to find him, Elliot uses his nose to follow a whiff of apple pie and finds Mouse with a freshly baked pie and new farmhouse friends. "That night, Elliot and Mouse nestled into the hay and took turns naming the stars until both fell fast asleep." It's always a pleasure to experience fun and friendship during a beautiful season of the year.


written by Deborah Underwood, llus. by Claudia Rueda, (Dial Books, August 2017, $16.99,
ISBN 978-0-399-53905-3), 88p, Ages 4-6

Cat's busy nap schedule is interrupted when he reluctantly agrees to become a substitute teacher for Ms. Melba's class at Kitty School. Facing six adorable kittens is terrifying for Cat, who attempts to escape out a window and hide under the desk. The unseen narrator's guilt trip has Cat returning to guide the kittens through music (loud jam session with electric guitar), building (a fish spouting fountain), and art (paw prints on walls). The kittens save the day and clean up, just in time for Ms. Melba's return with a cone around her neck. When asked what they learned while she was gone, the kittens use placards like Cat's to communicate their unusual day. When nap time arrives, Cat decides to stay for a group nap. Kids who love the Cat series, won't be disappointed in Cat's latest learning adventure.


7 ATE 9: The Untold Story
written by Tara Lazar, illus. by Ross MacDonald, (Disney-Hyperion, $17.99, May 2017,
ISBN 978-1-4847-1779-0), 32p, Ages 4-7

In this whodunit mystery, math puns, concepts and jokes surround an investigation by Private I of the Al F. Bet detective agency into an accusation made by frantic number 6 against number 7. "'Word on the street is that 7 ate 9! And now he's after me,' said 6." Private I responds, "'Well, technically, he's always after you. There's 5, then 6, then 7.'" With white gloves, stripped tie and fedora, Private I interviews various numbers and decides that the facts don't add up. Putting two and two together, he comes up with a clever solution to the mystery that is guaranteed to entertain adults as well as kids. "The next day, while dozing in my chair, my phone bolted me awake. I'd recognize her voice anywhere. It was 2 … with another problem to solve. I've really got to change my number!"


AUTUMN: An Alphabet Acrostic
written by Steven Schnur, illus. by Leslie Evans, (Clarion Books, Aug. 1997), 32p, Ages 5-8

In a clever word puzzle format, twenty-six riddles, one for each letter of the alphabet, describe the fall season. The answers can be read vertically and are spelled out in the first letter of each line. "Come October, / Only the harvested stalks / Remain in the fields as the / Nights turn frosty." (CORN) Beginning with acorns and frosty nights, the season gradually changes to end with the coming of winter. The clear, bright linoleum-cut illustrations also provide the clues for each riddle. The poems would be good examples for classroom writing assignments.

Ages 8-12

written by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, illus. by Vivienne Tu, (Atheneum Books, $16.99, Oct. 2017,
ISBN 978-1-4814-3779-0), 176p, Ages 7-11

Zack loves working on his grandparents' farm every weekend, except when Tailpipe spies him. That giant turkey-pecking monster chases him around the farm and delights in accosting him. Determined to find a way to scare the monster away for good, Zack uses various things from his grandfather's machine shed to build a "turkey-blaster trouble-shooter." With the help of two friends, Matthew and Josie, they use a croquet ball, rain gutter, pie tin, gum-ball machine, sewing machine stand, bellows, propeller, washing machine wringer, steering wheel, bicycle pump, water balloons, and marbles to construct a one-of-a-kind contraption to cure a mischievous turkey from pecking them. When Josie informs them of a mysterious robber prowling around the neighborhood stealing bracelets, necklaces, and coins, they discover strange V-shaped footprints that the robber leaves behind. Find out how the burglary is solved and Tailpipe receives his comeuppance in this humorous homespun novel of family and friends by award-winning Phyllis Reynolds Naylor.

Ages 10-13

LOCK AND KEY: The Initiation #1
written by Ridley Pearson, (HarperCollins, $17.99, Sept. 2016, ISBN 978-0-06-239901-4), 384p, Ages 11+

This first tale in a planned trilogy surrounds the origin of the rivalry between famous enemies, Sherlock Holmes and James Moriarty. Told from the perspective of James's younger sister, Moira, the three teens meet at Baskerville Academy in present day Boston, where James becomes the roommate of a lanky British know-it-all named Sherlock Holmes, ("Lock" to his friends). Shortly after school begins, the irreplaceable Moriarty Bible, belonging to the original Moriarty ancestor, goes missing. When the Academy imposes a lockdown until the bible is found, clues begin to turn up leading James on an intense search. With the entire student body under suspicion, only James receives curious red envelopes containing cryptic messages as to the Bible's whereabouts. When Sherlock and Moira offer assistance, James refuses and distances himself from them, instead aligning himself with unsavory upperclassmen. Sherlock, with his deductive reasoning, searches for clues that lead to the discovery of a secret society within the walls of the school, which include the headmaster and James's father. The members of this clandestine organization, called The Fellowship of Scowerers, encourage James to join. When James and Moira's father dies under suspicious circumstances, Moira asks Sherlock to do some investigating, believing that his death was not accidental. With danger and mystery around every corner, lives are irreversibly changed, and nothing will ever be the same for James, Moira, and Sherlock. Readers, who enjoy mysteries, will be pulled into this first installment of an exciting new series based on famous literary characters.

Ages 14-18+

written by Katherine Woodfine, illus. by Julia Sardà, (Kane Miller Books, Sept. 2017, $6.99,
ISBN 978-1-61067-661-8), 320p, Ages 13+

This third book in the Sinclair series (The Mystery of the Clockwork Sparrow, 2016, The Mystery of the Jeweled Moth, 2017) finds shopgirl Sophie Taylor, actress/part-time department store mannequin Lilian Rose and their detective friends investigating the theft of a priceless painting, The Green Dragon, property of the King on exhibition at Sinclair's department store. Replaced with a replica, painted by Leo, a disabled art student at London's Spencer Institute of Fine Art, the girls are faced with threats, attempted murder, forgery, trickery, and deceit involving a high ranking member of London society. Developing a clever plan to unmask the villain, they soon realize that their old enemy, the Baron, is behind the theft as well as other stolen dragon paintings by a secret organization known as the Dragon Brotherhood. Readers will enjoy this old-fashioned whodunit, including the interesting world of art, safecracking techniques, and the British Suffragettes.

Over the years, we have researched thousands of children's books, and can recommend some of the best in outstanding children's literature for parents to read aloud and children to read. Our recommendations must meet certain criteria: fun, creative and imaginative stories, delightful illustrations, and excellent for age appropriate listening and reading. We hope that you enjoyed our recommendations. If you desire further information some of the best in children's literature, please visit our website, www.tchliteracy.com.

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