Tag Archives: Animals

The Girl Who Stole An Elephant

Chaya is a rebellious and fearless schoolgirl.  She steals from the rich in her Serendib (Sri Lanka) village to help the poor.  One day, she goes too far and takes some of the Queen’s jewels and, consequently, gets her best friend arrested.  She and her friends, loyal Neelan and clever Nour, escape to the jungle where they have amazing adventures.  She also manages to steal the King’s elephant Ananda.  This fast-paced novel is full of gorgeous and vivid imagery and bits of interesting information about jungle flora and fauna. The book ends with a little twist. mjw
Title: The Girl Who Stole An Elephant
Author: Nizrana Farook
Publisher
: Nosy Crow Ltd. London
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-78800-634-7
Paperback pages
: 247
Age range
: 8-12
Genre
: Fiction
Book setting
: Serendib. Sri Lanka
Author’s ethnicity
: Born and raised in Colombo, Sri Lanka
Author’s residence
: Hertfordshire, England
Subjects
: Adventure, Bandits, Elephants, Girls, Jungles, Royalty, Theft

You’re Strong With Me

A new baby giraffe bounds through the grasslands and her mother tells her not to wander off on her own. The mother explains the oxpecker bird, fire, baby fish in the creek, and always proclaims, “…you’re strong with me.” Shades of brown and gold and triangle and diamond shapes are reminiscent of African textiles.  The original artwork was created with ink on paper and completed digitally.  Companion books are You’re Safe With Me and You’re Snug With Memjw
Title: You’re Strong With Me
Author: Chitra Soundar
Illustrator
: Poonam Mistry
Publisher
: Lantana Publishing Ltd.  London
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-911373-75-9
Hardcover pages
: 40
Age range
: 5-8
Genre
: Picture Book, Folklore
Book setting
: African Grasslands
Author’s ethnicity
: Indian born British
Author’s residence
: London
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Indian
Illustrator’s residence
: U.K.
Awards
: 2019 Kate Greenaway Shortlist
Subjects
: Baby animals, Giraffes, Grasslands, New experiences, Parents

The Jasmine Sneeze

Haroun is a happy cat living in Damascus, Syria.  He loves lazing and sleeping on the marble floor next to the fountain in his favorite courtyard.  But Haroun has a problem.  The fragrance of the beautiful jasmine flowers causes him to sneeze.  He decides to eradicate the problem by putting old fish skeletons, chicken bones, and other stinky smells into the jasmine tree pots. However, the jasmine spirit is watching his every move.  She is not happy and so she counter attacks Haroun in a funny way.  Haroun learns his lesson and peace returns to Damascus.  The illustrations are bright and cheery.  An author’s note explains more about Damascus, the City of Jasmine.  mjw
Title: The Jasmine Sneeze
Author: Nadine Kaadan
Illustrator
: Nadine Kaadan
Publisher
: Lantana Publishing, Ltd.
Copyright
: 2018
Original Language
: English
Original Publisher
: Lantana Publishing Ltd. United Kingdom
Original Copyright
: 2016
ISBN
: 978-1-911373-31-5
Hardcover pages
: 36
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: Damascus, Syria
Author’s ethnicity
: Syrian
Author’s residence
: United Kingdom
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Syrian
Illustrator’s residence
: United Kingdom
Subjects
: Cats, Flowers, Jasmine

Clara The Rhino

Based on a true story, this book is about the friendship between an orphaned rhinoceros from India and a Dutch sea captain in the mid 18thcentury.  Captain Douwe van der Meer decides to take Clara the rhino from India to Holland.  No one in Europe has ever seen a rhino and the Captain is sure that she will be a sensation.  The voyage from India to Holland takes many weeks and Clara eats 100 pounds of hay every day.  She especially likes oranges.   Clara wins the hearts of everyone as she and the Captain travel all over Europe. Her image appears on posters, coins, statuettes, and art in museums.  She finally returns to Holland where the Captain provides Clara a home of her own.  A map shows Clara’s extensive travels through Europe.  Bold, colorful artwork enhances the story.  Another book, Clara: The (Mostly) True Story Of The Rhinoceros Who Dazzled Kings, Inspired Artists, And Won The Hearts Of Everyone…While She Ate Her Way Up And Down A Continent was written by Emily Arnold McCully in 2016. mjw
Title: Clara The Rhino
Author: Katrin Hirt
Illustrator
: Laura Fuchs
Publisher
: North South Books, Inc.
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: German
Translator
: David Henry Wilson
Original Title
: Ein Nashorn namens Clara
Original Publisher
: NordSud Verlag.  Zurich, Switzerland
Original Copyright
: 2019
ISBN
: 978-0-7358-4395-0
Hardcover pages
: 48
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: India, Holland, France, Italy
Author’s ethnicity
: German
Author’s residence
: Tubingen, Germany
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: German
Illustrator’s residence
: Hamburg, Germany 
Subjects
: Boats and ships, European history, Netherlands, Rhinoceroses

Pokko And The Drum

The biggest mistake Pokko’s parents ever made was giving her a drum.  They suggest that she take it out into the forest because it is too loud for a frog family that lives in a mushroom and doesn’t like drawing attention to themselves.  Pokko agrees. As she plays her drum, a raccoon playing a banjo starts following her.  And then a rabbit playing a trumpet starts following them.  A wolf joins in and soon there is a crowd of animals playing instruments.  Pokko’s father calls her to dinner, but she can’t hear him.  The band even takes Pokko’s family into the woods.  The amusing, lush illustrations were rendered in watercolor, gouache, and colored pencil. mjw
Title: Pokko And The Drum
Author: Matthew Forsythe
Illustrator
: Matthew Forsythe
Publisher
: Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English 
ISBN
: 978-1481-48039-0
Hardcover pages
: 64
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Author’s residence
: Montreal, Quebec. Canada
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Illustrator’s residence
: Montreal, Quebec. Canada
Subjects
: Community, Drums, Forest animals, Individuality, Musicians, Performing arts, Persistence

Koala

Beautiful watercolor illustrations and interesting text introduce young readers to koalas.  Baby koalas are called joeys.  They drink milk in their mothers’ pouches.  The koala in this story gets swatted from his mother’s pouch because it is time for him to find his own way, forage for food, and escape from predators.  Factual material is included in smaller print.  The last page of the book contains even more information about koalas. The book concludes with an index. mjw
Title: Koala
Author: Claire Saxby
Illustrator
: Julie Vivas
Publisher
: Candlewick Press
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-5362-0896-2
Paperback pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book, Nonfiction, Information Book
Book setting
: Australia
Author’s ethnicity
: Australian
Author’s residence
: Melbourne, Australia
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Australian
Illustrator’s residence
: Sydney, Australia
Subjects
: Australia, Eucalypts, Koalas, Marsupials, Zoology

Hello, Crow!

Franny is a dreamer. Her dad calls her Franny Featherhead. She loves listening to the cries of the birds in the branches outside.  To her, every bug, every leaf, and every petal is shimmering with wonder. She meets a crow that brings her presents in its beak.  Her dad doesn’t believe that she can have a crow as a friend, so she takes him out to her favorite spot to wait for the crow, to prove that they are friends. Information about crows is included in this fun story illustrated with vivid drawings. mjw
Title: Hello, Crow!
Author: Candace Savage
Illustrator
: Chelsea O’Byrne
Publisher
: Greystone Kids Books
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-77164-444-0
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Author’s residence
: Saskatchewan, Canada
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Illustrator’s residence
: Vancouver, Canada
Subjects
: Animal behavior, Birds, Crows, Outdoor activities, Self-esteem