Kids Book Reviews ~ Library Haul #7
#1. Olivia and the Fairy Princesses by Ian Falconer
Olivia is a pig who takes particular delight in being unique. In this book, it perturbs her that so many of her friends want to be fairies or princesses. She does too, but she doesn’t want to be one of a thousand–she wants to be the only one. She considers several other possibilities through the course of the book, eventually deciding that being queen solves everything. I think this book tries to send a pretty clear message to little girls especially, that they can be anything they want to be, so I like that. Sophia likes that it had anything to do with princess. I just don’t like Olivia. It’s silly to dislike a character in a children’s book, but she is just such a conceited little thing, it’s hard not to dislike her. Let’s face it, aside from knowing that she can do anything she wants to do, I do NOT want my child acting like Olivia the pig. ‘Nuf said.
It was okay. 3 out of 5 stars.
#2. Kids Meet the Emergency and Rescue Vehicles by Andra Serlin Ambramson
This is a little flip book of all the emergency and rescue vehicles in use in the US. It was very comprehensive, at least to my knowledge. Each page had a nice picture of the vehicle, and several paragraphs of information about said vehicle. Honestly, it was more information than Sophia was interested in at this age. All she really wanted to do was say the name of each vehicle and talk about the pictures, but she LOVED this book. Every single time we read books, this is the first one she reaches for, and she’ll sit there and look at the pictures by herself too. Best moment of reading it: When I realized she was calling helicopters ‘happy tractors’. It was hilarious. She only did it a few times before she caught on to the actual pronunciation though 🙁
We really liked it. 4 out of 5 stars
#3. Clare Beaton’s Animal Rhymes by Clare Beaton
This little board book is packed with rhyming poems about animals–always a winning combination with the littles in my house. Animal sounds, quick limericks, board book… check, check, check.
We really liked it: 4 out of 5 stars
#4. Utterly Lovely One by Mary Murphy
You’re utterly lovely, I’m utterly lovely. Everybody is utterly lovely. That’s the theme here anyways, showcased with fun zoo animal illustrations. It was pretty cute, as far as children’s books go. Again, animals are always a hit in my house, although some of the animals in this one presented a bit of a conundrum. (What sound does a wombat make? Anybody?) All that said though, it wasn’t all that original, and it was repetitive. I think it’s the double ‘ly’ words in the beginning. Even though utterly is an adverb, it sounds like double-adjectives, and my mental editor slaps my brain every time it sees ‘Utterly Lovely’. Ugh.
It was okay: 3 out of 5 stars.
#5. The Really Awful Musicians by John Manders
A king is sick and tired of his musicians. They just play whatever they want to, individually but simultaneously. It’s loud, it’s obnoxious, and the King is tired of it. He orders that all the musicians in the kingdom be replaced by mimes and chucked into the moat as crocodile food. Understandably, one of the musicians finds a horse and cart and begins to run. As he flees the king’s officers, he picks up other musicians who happen to be running too, and they all run together, playing their music individually but simultaneously until the horse has had enough and forces them to play together. Surprise! It sounds beautiful! The king promptly pardons all musicians and throws the mimes to the crocodiles.
This was a pretty hilarious one, as kids books go, and it introduces some very basic music theory. It’s a good gateway to the topic though, if you have kids that seem interested in music!
We loved it: 5 out of 5 stars