Have a Perfect Day with Pinny in Summer

Have a perfect day by checking out these stunning spreads from Pinny in Summer, written by Joanne Schwartz and illustrated by Isabelle Malenfant. What’s Pinny’s idea of a perfect day, you ask? Pinny and her friends spend their day watching clouds, picking wild blueberries and enjoying a picnic.

Pinny in Summer
Pinny in Summer
Pinny in Summer

 


Pinny in Summer

This engaging story, told in chapter-like episodes, follows Pinny on a long, lazy summer day. As sunshine turns to rain and back to sun again, Pinny searches for a wishing rock, watches clouds, picks wild blueberries, feeds a seagull, and bakes a cake to share with her friends.

An ideal book for children beginning to make the jump to independent reading, Pinny in Summer demonstrates the joy young people find in nature and an unstructured life. Pinny is allowed to explore her world freely, and her small setbacks and triumphs will be familiar to every child.

With charming illustrations by Isabelle Malenfant and a spare, poetic text from author Joanne Schwartz, Pinny in Summer is a bright and inviting picture book that captures all the delight of a perfect summer day.

Welcome Sam!

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Marie-Louise Gay’s beloved books about Stella’s little brother, Sam, are all here in this vibrant and humorous collection.

Children all around the world have read about Stella and Sam, and their gently funny, nurturing relationship. Stella has a creative and whimsical answer for all of Sam’s many questions, and their explorations of the world are sweet, silly and often poignant.

This book brings together all three books about Stella’s little brother — Good Morning, Sam; Good Night, Sam and What Are You Doing, Sam? — for the first time. It also features new endpaper art, and a letter to the reader from Stella herself!

 

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Gustave is a friend you won’t forget

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A little mouse and his friend, Gustave, go out to play one afternoon in this darkly comic story about the sadness of losing a friend and the joy of making a new one.

The mouse’s mother has always warned the young friends not to stray too far from home. There is a cat, she says, and it is dangerous to go far away.

But danger doesn’t stop this curious pair, and soon they find themselves face-to-face with their big blue-eyed enemy. In a feat of bravery, Gustave allows his friend the chance to escape — but is gobbled up by the cat in the process. Heartbroken, the little mouse must return home — without his friend — and tell his mother what has happened.

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A sweet surprise ending turns this melancholy tale of friendship into a strangely funny book.

You’ll be moved by I Moved My Hand

Moví la mano / I Moved My Hand

When a little girl moves her hand, she changes the world as she discovers it. As she moves her known world she discovers her own power and creates everything anew.

The poem, written by Argentine poet Jorge Luján, comes from a culture saturated with magic in which even the very young can make the world by reaching out and moving it. Mandana Sadat’s imaginative illustrations deepen and enrich the text. Movi la mano / I Moved My Hand is a special contribution to the world of children’s books for the very young (and the not so young).

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Behind the scenes and between the pages of Any Questions? — Guest Post by Marie-Louise Gay

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At last! I am holding in my hands the fresh-off-the-press copy of my new book, Any Questions? It has been a long time since the seed of the idea for the story started growing, spreading itsroots and stretchingits branches to the sky.

Five years! A lot of things can happen in five years. Small trees grow, children start to read,  grandparents grow old, people stay in one safe place or explore the world while others have no choice. Books are written, songs are sung and new species of animals are discovered.

Five years of exploring a story I wanted to tell. Following paths that got lost in a labyrinth of confusion or petered outinto a dead-end. Five years of searching for the true voice or voices, of looking for colors, textures and rhythm, words, puns and rhymes. Creating  a cast of characters, from polar bears to pterodactyls, elephants to snails, giants and beasts and dozens and dozens of children brimming with questions.

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Five years spent gathering materials, ideas and inspiration to create a story about how to create a story, with words and pictures, based on the wide experience I have had in meeting with children, reading to and with them, drawing and creating stories in schools and librairies and especially answering their endless questions.

I wanted my story to be playful, magical and surprising. I  didn’t want it to be a bookthat tells children how to write, but rather to discover that there are many ways of writingand telling stories.

I wanted children (and adults) to realize that they will be moved to be more creative when they are facing the unknown in that uncertain, scary, exciting mindspace between the time you know you have a story to tell, but before you have found a way to tell it.

I hid details and clues throughout the book, sometimes in plain sight, other times more subtly. For example, take a look at the title page, an illustration of an artist’s studio…

Pore over the tiny sketches that reveal some of the images that you will discover further on in the book (singing dinosaurs, trees running for their lives, caterpillars, snails, cat’s pawprints). With these images you start to understand the creative process, random images that float into your creative radar and weave themselves into the story.

I also invited some of my favorite characters from my other books to take part in Any Questions? I gave them bit parts or cameo roles: Try to find Stella and Sam, Roslyn Rutabaga orCaramba and Portia.

I want this book to have many voices: the Narrator’s voice, the Children and Animal voices, the Second Narrator’s voice in the story-within-a-story. I also wanted to vary the visual design from black and white storyboards…

to full color spreads with another layer of action behind the scenes, to the visual creative process in The Shy Young Giant story where color and collage progressively invade the images.

Enough said!

I hope you enjoy reading, exploring and sharing Any Questions?

By the way, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask. I might just have some answers…

You’ll want to read this classic 101 times

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Celebrating its 30th year in print, now back in hardcover, a classic picture book from renowned author and illustrator Jan Ormerod.

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What do you do with a new baby? An imaginative older sister and her parents explore this question in this sweet and authentic depiction of a day in the life of a young family.

Whether Big Sister is feeding, entertaining or dressing her baby brother (in Mom’s hat or Dad’s shoes!), Jan Ormerod illustrates a warm, and occasionally challenging story of family, perfect for older siblings getting to know their new brothers or sisters.

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Originally published in 1984, this book is a timeless depiction of family life and the important role older siblings play.

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