Saturday Storytime

Note: I can't tell that anyone else is doing something like this -- and if they are, and you know about it, please let me know!

I love picture books. Love them. I have a designated shelf for the picture books I acquire. (When I packed up so many books in October, I left out a lot of my picture books.) I still like to browse the children's section of the library, seeing what treasures are hiding on the crammed shelves. While I've reviewed some picture books, I realized there must be a better way to share my illustrated finds. After some musing, and pondering, I settled on the idea of "Saturday Storytime." This new feature will spotlight a couple picture books at a time, some old, some new. I like the alliteration of the name, and while it won't be a weekly thing, I'm shooting for once -- maybe twice -- a month. We'll see how it goes, but I think it has fun potential. Ready for the first installment?

Marching with Aunt Susan
Claire Rudolf Murphy & Stacey Schuett (Illustrator)
Peachtree, 2011

Bessie wants to do the things her brothers can, but as a girl in the 1890s she cannot. Able to recognize the unfairness, Bessie soon joins her mother and other women in town for suffragette meetings and marches with Susan B. Anthony. Along the way she learns more about the world around her, and helps make small changes for equality in her own family.

Beautifully illustrated, this is a story that's easy to read but also informative. At the back of the book are an author's note, timeline of suffrage history, and a mini-bio of "Aunt Susan," as well as resources for further reading.

Book provided by publisher for review.
Can I Bring Woolly to the Library, Ms. Reeder?
Lois Grambling & Judith Dufour Love (Illustrator)
Charlesbridge, 2012

This is a super cute, fun way to help kids learn library rules, by way of teaching them to a woolly mammoth. When a boy starts to plead his case to the librarian, Ms. Reeder, about why Woolly should get to come to the library, he talks his way through all the rules and potential problems. (And makes a pretty compelling case. I'd totally let Woolly come to my library!) The illustrations are fun and have a lot of detail. A great choice for a library storytime, I think.

Book provided by my local library.
The Divide
Michael Bedard & Emily Arnold McCully (Illustrator)
Doubleday, 1997

In this beautiful book, we meet a young Willa Cather, struggling with homesickness and sadness as she moves with her family to The Divide. In the wide lonesome prairie lands, she discovers the true beauty and treasures in life, making friends with the immigrant women and discovering the hidden beauties of the wild, untamed land. These years, these memories, are what became the novels and stories that we think of when we think of Cather. But it started as a girl, a young girl of nine, leaving behind Home and finding that life is so much more. The Divide is one of those pretty books that I appreciate especially as a "grown up", but children will like it to.

Book provided by my personal library.

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