Pajama Press

Archive for February, 2018

Small Things is a book that Marmalade Books “won’t forget”

Posted on February 18th, 2018 by pajamapress

SmallThings_Website“According to parenting and teaching educator Barbara Coloroso, childhood anxiety is an issue facing an alarming number of youth today. The subject is hit head-on in Small Things, an amazing and emotional new wordless graphic picture book for ages 8-12, by Australian artist Mel Tregonning.

I received an advance copy from the Canadian publisher Pajama Press. It immediately reminded me of Shaun Tan’s book The Arrival, published in 2007. I never forgot this migrant story. Also wordless in graphic book style, it was the perfect way for the ‘reader’ to really feel what it would be like to arrive in a foreign country, not able to speak or read the language or understand the culture….

Mel Tregonning was obviously inspired by Shaun Tan’s work and created a similar opportunity for readers to see what it would be like to walk in the shoes of a child suffering from debilitating anxiety….

This is an important book for pre-teens and young teens that deal with or know someone that deals with anxiety. A must for middle grade school libraries and would be an ideal conversation starter for classrooms.

Like The ArrivalSmall Things is also a book this bookseller won’t forget.”

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Resource Links calls The Night Lion “dreamlike”, “irresistible”, and “comforting”

Posted on February 16th, 2018 by pajamapress

TheNightLion_Website“Rating: E…The clever illustrations are beautifully rendered in water colour and enhance the dreamlike intrepid tone of the story. The picture of Morgan asleep with the full grown lion is especially irresistible. The comforting story encourages young children suffering from nightmares to conquer their fears. Thematic Links: Nightmares; Dreams; Lions; Self-esteem; Grandmothers”
—Isobel Lang

Read the full review on page 3 of the February 2018 issue of Resource Links Magazine

Resource Links says Woodrow at Sea is “a strong addition to any library”

Posted on February 16th, 2018 by pajamapress

WoodrowAtSea_Website“Rating: G…This wordless book could also be called a beginning graphic novel….

This book represents a positive message of friendship, peace and harmony, which are common themes in Edwards’ work….[A] good exemplar to show children how to create a wordless book (using illustrations to tell a story) as well as a fantastic example of a book that allows for elaboration and multiple interpretations by each reader (as it has no text to direct the full narrative) and each reading and reader will see different nuances and make different connections based on their own imaginations and lived experiences. This book will be a strong addition to any library. Thematic Links: Sea Journeys; Friendship; Wordless Book”
—Erin Hansen

Read the full review on page 3 of the February 2018 issue of Resource Links Magazine

Small Things “is one of the most unique books [Book Time] has read in a while”

Posted on February 16th, 2018 by pajamapress

SmallThings_WebsiteSmall Things by Mel Tregonning ($22.95, Pajama Press) is one of the most unique picture books I have read in a while….

In the afterword by Barbara Coloroso, author of Kids Are Worth It, writes ‘Mel Tregonning speaks volumes about childhood anxiety – an issue facing an alarming number of youth today.’…

Once I read that afterword, my first thought was Wow. What a powerful message with powerful illustrations.

But I wondered if my nine-year-old son would get it. When I ‘read’ it to him, I told him the black creatures were demons and we looked through the story together. I explained to him about anxiety and not letting fear get in your way of doing what you want to do. I plan to keep this book and pull it out once in a while to remind my son of what doubt, fear and negative self-talk can do. Because I think Coloroso is right – this book is a great starting pointing to help identify anxiety and ensure my son never let the demons win.”

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Wild One is “delightful” and full of “charm” says Resource Links Magazine

Posted on February 15th, 2018 by pajamapress

WildOne_Website“Rating: E…The illustrations elevate the simple rhythmic text by showing the child on each succeeding page as the very animal she is imitating with great charm. The watercolour and ink drawings are delightful, appealing and beautifully done. Thematic Links: Imagination; Play; Bedtime”
—Isobel Lang

Read the full review on page 46 of the February 2018 issue of Resource Links Magazine

Wash On! is “topsy-turvy offbeat fun” says Kirkus Reviews

Posted on February 14th, 2018 by pajamapress

WashOn_Website“A girl alters a simple phrase and changes the world….Gauthier’s gorgeous mixed-media illustrations are quirky and angled, with an energetic combination of drawn lines, watery paint, cut paper, wood textures, and photo collage….Topsy-turvy offbeat fun.”

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ILA Literacy Daily selects When the Rain Comes among other books that represent “Cultural Diversity in Children’s and Young Adult Literature”

Posted on February 12th, 2018 by pajamapress

WhenRainComes_website“Rendered in pencil and watercolor, the illustrations depict the drama and danger of the wind, driving rain, and Malini’s effort to protect the rice seedlings and soothe the ox.”

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Timo Goes Camping “is an excellent choice to display teamwork, to learn about camping and canoeing and having fun” says Youth Services Book Review

Posted on February 12th, 2018 by pajamapress

TimoGoesCamping_WebsiteRating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4

Genre: animal fiction

What did you like about the book? …This is an excellent choice to display teamwork, to learn about camping and canoeing and having fun….A simple, short story perfect for beginning chapter book readers. There are bright, detailed digitally created illustrations on every page.

Anything you did not like about this book?  No.

To whom would you recommend this book? Kids who have enjoyed the previous two stories about Timo and his friends will like this in addition to those who like animal fiction.”
Katrina Yurenka, Moderator, Youth Services Book Review

Click here to read the full review

Hit or Miss Books compliments the “absolutely gorgeous and, surprisingly, lyrical [illustrations]” in When the Rain Comes

Posted on February 10th, 2018 by pajamapress

WhenRainComes_website“The moods of Sri Lanka’s rainy season come alive as Kim La Fave, illustrator of the award-winning Shin Chi’s Canoe, uses a fresh style that is both contemporary and impressionistic to depict the courage of one little girl facing the power of a flash flood….

The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous and, surprisingly, lyrical. The writing is, too, but even without words, this book would still be fairly easy to understand as well as moving.”

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Kirkus Reviews praises “the refreshing visibility and validity of childhood pressures” in Small Things

Posted on February 9th, 2018 by pajamapress

SmallThings_Website“Anxiety is more than a feeling in this visual narrative, more than the pressure of school tests, the loneliness of exclusion by classmates, or the fear of such shortcomings being discovered at home. Anxiety, represented here by ominously sharp swirls of black ink, has a visceral, visual gravitas—it grows to fill literal and figurative space as the young protagonist’s outlook progresses steadily downhill….[T]he refreshing visibility and validity of childhood pressures accompanied by the equally important realization that no one is alone in their experience of such strain balances the slight risk that readers might lose track of the narrative….A picture book that wants to be a graphic novel, and a message worthy of both.”

Click here to read the full review