Molly Idle

Wordless Wednesday: Flora And The Flamingo & Interview With Molly Idle!

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Hello again to another Wordless Wednesday. In addition to having a beautiful book to discuss today, I have a short interview with the author and illustrator, Molly Idle! A breathtaking wordless book is such an artistic feat, who would know more about them than the artist herself!

Let’s take a quick look at the book to introduce it to any who may have missed it and refresh those of us who love it. And then we’ll get to the good stuff in a short Q&A. Here is Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle, 2013. Read the full post…

Book Review: Goodnight Songs – A Celebration Of The Seasons By Margaret Wise Brown

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Although books about the seasons are lovely reading any time of year, there is something about the coming of autumn and all the changes it brings that feels even more appropriate for reading about the seasons. Fall is my favorite season, but I am always willing to ponder the things to love about every season. And luckily, we have a gorgeous new book out this August that provides not only stunning imagery, but includes beautiful songs originally written by Margaret Wise Brown.

This is the second collection of songs released, the first collection I am ashamed to say I have not seen and completely missed when it came out. I will be looking it up immediately as I am smitten by this second book. Allow me to share Goodnight Songs – A Celebration of the Seasons by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by twelve award-winning picture book artists, 2015. Read the full post…

How To Read A Wordless Book

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Two years ago, while I was acting as a judge for the Cybils and reading even more books than normal in a given year, I noted the inordinate amount of wordless picture books that had come out in 2013. It even turned out to be the Caldecott year for wordless picture books as the 2014 honor awards went to three wordless picture books: Journey, Flora and the Flamingo, and Mr. Wuffles!. It was an unheard-of year for wordless picture books. I even frequently refer to 2013 as “The year of the wordless picture book.” Clever, no?

I’ve discussed wordless books occasionally, the most important for me being South by Patrick McDonnell; but I tend to avoid discussing them as they are intimidating as a reader, and especially as an illustrator. They can be lovely and they can also be frustrating. The tendency to just barrel through each page and not pause too long is even greater because there are no words to guide you. They can be delightful to savor by yourself, but groan-inducing when brought to you by a child with full expectation of you putting on a great ad lib read.

But, a well-executed wordless picture book has gone beyond creating lovely pictures and has buried a story so deep that words cannot express it. The illustrations must do double-duty. They must draw you in, yes with their actual drawn nature; but also with their ability to tell the story with every detail, every expression, every movement and page turn.

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The most tender scene impressed on my mind and heart from South by Patrick McDonnell.

I do not have what I would consider the ultimate grasp on how to read a wordless picture book, but I thought I would share a few pointers I have gleaned to help make them less intimidating and perhaps invite you to experience them more fully. I plan on sharing a wordless picture book review every Wednesday for a while, and so I hope this serves as an intro on how to approach all the amazing picture books that come out “quietly.” I took a ton of pictures from the cast of 2013 wordless picture books, so I am going to illustrate my reading tips using those books. Taking a cue from 6 of the stellar wordless books from 2013, here are my 5 tips to reading a wordless picture book: Read the full post…

Let’s Read Three: More Books About The Sea!

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I promise these are my last summery, beachy books for a while. I really can’t wait to jump into a bunch of new finds and especially fall books! But these three deserve some love, especially as two are brand-new this year. Join me in reading a few more books about adventures at the beach. Let’s read three more sea books!

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How To: Children’s Book Character Costumes Part 1

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It’s that time of year again for all sorts of crazy costuming. While this holiday is still not my favorite, I have taken great pleasure in coming up with some more children’s book characters that would be somewhat simple to create costumes. Actually, I may have gone a little overboard with these ideas but once I got started, I just couldn’t stop thinking of more! So, I’m going to break it up into several posts.

As in my last posts with costume ideas, I’m not going to make the costumes to show you. I sincerely do not have time for all that, though it would be a blast. I am simply going to post an image of the character along with what I consider the supplies list and ideas for making a similar look. I prefer being an idea-giver! I would love it if you do create one and send me a photo! Cute kids in costumes are awesome. Read the full post…

Dinosaur Children’s Picture Books To Devour

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I readily admit that after our last storytime, I’ve been on a bit of a dinosaur kick. I actually never went through a dinosaur phase as a child, at least that I can remember, so I’m just considering this my bound to come eventually moment. I’m also going to blame it on two books that recently came out, one by Willems last fall and Idle’s this spring, that were so overflowing with dino-awesomeness that they turned me onto the cretaceous creatures.

With my recent search for great dinosaur books, and the fact that I know dozens of children who can’t get enough of these (mostly) humongous creatures, I thought it fitting to make a list of my current favorite dino-themed picture books. As with all of my lists, this is not exhaustive. I’m sure there are many more amazing books about dinosaurs that I just haven’t found yet and I do hope that if you know of them, you’ll tell me in the comments! Here we have my current favorite dinosaur children’s picture books for that avid dino fan in your life (and it is totally ok if that is you): Read the full post…

Book Review: Tea Rex By Molly Idle

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A dinosaur and a tea party – has there ever been a better combination for a children’s book? I think perhaps not. I picked up my copy of this brand-spanking new piece of fantastic work by Molly Idle on Saturday. It is supposedly being released tomorrow, but I guess it really does pay to shop local independent bookstores and request they stock something! This is a brilliant book, sure to delight boys and girls alike and send them into a fit of giggles and planning their own rompous affair. This is Tea Rex by Molly Idle, 2013.

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