All posts in Reading Lists: Picture Books

10 Hilarious Cat and Dog Picture Books

10 Hilarious Cat and Dog Picture Books

To celebrate the release of my latest picture book, Officer Katz & Houndini: A Tale of Two Tails, illustrated by Danny Chatzikonstantinou, Mia invited me to share my TOP 5 funny dog and cat picture books!

Dog my cats! It was virtually impossible to limit myself to 5 books each, but here goes! It’s raining cats and dog picture books!!

 10 Hilarious Cat and Dog Picture Books starting with …

Top 5 FUNNY Dog Picture Books

5. A Dog Wearing Shoes by Sangmi Ko

How can you resist this cover? I certainly couldn’t!

The shoe-wearing canine character of this dog adoption tale so reminds me of another favorite canine, Dr. Seuss’s Max.

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Picture Books for Finding Courage

Picture Books for Finding Courage & 3 Book GIVEAWAY

I’m so happy to welcome my guest author today, Laura Gehl, who has a Top 10: Picture Books for Finding Courage. Her list is not limited to Scared of the Dark picture books, but also includes both nonfiction and hilarious fiction books of overcoming fear. She’s also giving away 3 copies of her latest Peep and Egg book, Peep and Egg: I’m Not Trick or Treating, just in time for Halloween. Please fill out the Rafflecopter at the bottom to enter.

How about you? What books about childhood fears are you enjoying with your kids? I just read a remarkable one by Canadian astronaut, Chris Hadfield, about his fear of the dark and how he overcame that in order to explore the darkness of space: The Darkest Dark.


I was a pretty fearful kid, with many of the typical childhood worries.  I was scared of robbers breaking into my house.  I was scared of something terrible happening to my parents.  I was scared of not fitting in at school.

And then I became a mom, and between my four kids, we had pretty much EVERY fear covered: fear of the dark, fear of needles, fear of heights, fear of worms (not proboscis worms, which can grow to more than 150 feet and are legitimately creepy…just regular earthworms).

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My Very Short Diversity Picture Book Videos

My Very Short Diversity Picture Book Videos

I’ve been making very, very short picture book videos on my YouTube channel. I only have 47 subscribers, so if you would subscribe, I’d be very grateful!

I made over three dozen picture book videos so far of newly published books, but I picked these five diversity books to highlight today.

5 Wonderful Diversity Picture Books Made Into a Very Short Video

Mamá the Alien by Rene Colato Lainez, illustrated by Laura Lacamara

The confusion of being a legal alien versus an alien from outer space makes its bilingual Spanish picture book the perfect conversation starter about the naturalization process. MAMA THE ALIEN by Rene Colato Lainez, illustrated by Laura Lacamara. ♫ Background song, Englishman In New York by Sting. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

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Picture Books for Toddlers About Being a Good Friend

Picture Books for Toddlers About Being a Good Friend & GIVEAWAY!

Maria Ashworth is my guest blogger today with a list of ten picture books to help toddlers and preschoolers learn how to be a good friend. Her picture book is called My Big Tree and introduces counting to 10. Animals in North America join a blue bird in a tree but must reorganize into segregated groups in order to make the bird happy.

10 Great Picture Books for Toddlers About Being A Good Friend

10. It’s Mine by Leo Lionni
Selfish frogs bicker about everything until a disaster strikes their pond. Then do they learn the value of friendship. The book is a perfect story for any child who needs a little reminder on why it is important to learn to share.

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19 Picture Books That Teach Important Life Lessons

19 Picture Books That Teach Important Life Lessons

Can picture books teach life lessons? I think so. To find life lessons, I went to some original sources … life lessons from a 90-year-old woman and a 99-year-old man. Their words of wisdom were similar and it’s about living well to live long.

I added in a few life lessons that I’ve found along the way and the picture books that help to illustrate it. How about you? What life lessons resonate for you? Please do share!

Laugh (Every Day)

A Couple of Boys Have the Best Week Ever by Marla Frazee

Funny picture books are very popular in my house, but it’s hard to get both adult and child to snort laugh at the same time. Especially if said picture book gets read over and over again, which typically makes the humor wane over time.

Perhaps A Couple of Boys Have The Best Week Ever speaks to my son and I because he’s that kid. For all the outdoor enrichment activities that I plan for him, he’d rather be home in front of a screen. And he also has dryly sarcastic things to say about day camp and other activities forced upon him.

Humor is recommended for living a long full life. Laugh often, at least daily and surround yourself with people, and books, that make you laugh. That’s probably the #1 piece advice from those who have lived long and well. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

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3 Fun Picture Books for Father's Day

3 Fun Picture Books for Father’s Day & GIVEAWAY

For Father’s Day a few years back, my husband recommended his favorite golf books, not once but twice. He played golf in college for University of Hawaii and is an avid collector of golf stuff: Scotty Cameron putters, golf books, and other very specific items that I can’t keep track of.

This Father’s Day, we are getting him a golf bag with wheels for exercise on the golf course. Naturally, he had a very specific bag in mind. He sent me a link of what he wanted.

For past Father’s Days, my husband likes to do a family outing picking strawberries because the golf course is too crowded on a Sunday for a golf outing. It’s a fun family tradition. Our other (new) tradition is to make Flipagram videos for each other to celebrate holidays.

What does your family like to do to celebrate for Father’s Day? Read more…

Penny & Jelly giveaway

Penny & Jelly: 3 Picture Book GIVEAWAY!

I’m celebrating Maria Gianferrari’s new sequel to Penny and Jelly today by doing a three picture book giveaway! Penny and Jelly Slumber Under the Stars celebrates the pleasure of the great outdoors in the company of our favorite animal friends..

We have a fair amount of light pollution where I live, but sometimes on vacation when we can look up at the sky and see the stars and moon, we marvel at what we can see. My kids learned about the phases of the moon in 4th grade where they used Oreo cookies to recreate the moon phases. We read about the moon in picture books too. And we watched the Blood Moon Lunar Eclipse in Boston. The skies are amazing, aren’t they?

moon view by Niko Grigorieff

Image of moon view by Niko Grigorieff Read more…

Wonderful Ramadan Books for Kids of All Ages

16 Wonderful Ramadan Books for Kids of All Ages

We are celebrating Ramadan over at Multicultural Children’s Book Day for the month of June. This is my contribution. Join us at our blog with guest posts from authors on how they are celebrating Ramadan, and book giveaways.

I wanted to make a list of Ramadan books to learn more about this holiday. Here’s what I learned after reading a dozen books:

  • Ramandan is the ninth month in the calendar used for Muslim holidays. When it is near, they watch for a new crescent moon. (Now I understand why many Ramadan books reference the moon in the title!)
  • The calendar for Muslim holidays follows the moon which means Ramadan starts on a different day every year, and can happen in any season. This year Ramadan falls during summer which is the most challenging season to fast during. The days are very long and hot.
  • Caring for the poor is important to Muslims which is one reason why they fast. Fasting helps them understand how people feel when they go hungry.
  • The festival of Girgian which comes in the middle of Ramadan reminds me of Halloween. Kids get dressed in traditional costumes and collect treats from their neighbors.
  • The new crescent moon marks the end of Ramadan and that day is called Eid al-Fitr. Muslims clean and decorate their homes and they have a big feast.

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Can You Spot Him? A real life Halibut Jackson

Can You Spot Him? A real life Halibut Jackson

My husband and I delighted in reading a picture book to our kids about a shy man named Halibut Jackson who made specially crafted outfits designed to blend into his environment.

Halibut Jackson by David Lucas

Halibut Jackson is shy and doesn’t want to be noticed so he makes special outfits designed to blend into the background. He has a flowered suit for the park, a book-patterned suit for the library, and a fruit-adorned suit for the shops. When he gets invited to a party with the king and queen, he’s excited to go. But how was he to know it’s a garden party?! Everyone notices Halibut Jackson. And everyone notices his marvelous suit. They all want one too. Now Halibut Jackson has a new profession, and he’s a little less shy! [picture book, ages 4 and up]

My husband recently was excited to discover a real life Halibut Jackson, Chinese artist Liu Bolin. Can you spot him? Read more…