Tag Archives: Animals

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

Greyfriars Bobby: A Puppy’s Tale

Today, visitors to Edinburgh, Scotland, come from all over the world to see Bobby’s statue and to lay flowers and sticks on his grave.  Bobby was the wee faithful Skye Terrier who patrolled Scotland’s streets with local policeman John Gray.  This story tells of Bobby’s early days when he and an orphaned boy named Sandy caught a pickpocket and how he met his master John Gray.  After John Gray died in 1858, the loyal dog lay beside his master’s grave in Greyfriar’s churchyard every day for fourteen years.  A glossary defines Scottish words.  Lively illustrations bring the Victorian streets of Edinburgh to life. mjw
Title: Greyfriar’s Bobby: A Puppy’s Tale
Author: Michelle Sloan
Illustrator: Elena Bia
Publisher
: Kelpies, an imprint of Floris Books
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English 
ISBN
: 978-178250-590-7
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-7
Genre
: Picture Book, Historical Fiction
Book setting
: Edinburgh, Scotland 
Author’s ethnicity
: Scottish
Author’s residence
: Brought Ferry, Scotland
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Italian
Illustrator’s residence
: Novara, Italy
Subjects
: Dogs, Loyalty, Policemen, Scottish folklore

Panthera Tigris

A highly educated scientist whose knowledge is astounding realizes that he knows nothing about Bengal tigers.  He reads every book about tigers that he can find and concludes that he must travel to the Indian jungle to learn more.  After his long journey, he asks a local hunter to be his guide.  He proceeds to tell the guide all he knows about tigers. He doesn’t stop talking and the guide never gets a word in.  When confronted by a magnificent tiger, the guide climbs the nearest tree and the scientist learns that the guide’s practical experience is best.  The tale is inspired by Swami Prajnanpad, a modern Indian guru and philosopher (1891-1974).  Fine lined drawings splashed with greens, browns, and neon orange complement the humorous text.  They include complicated diagrams and anatomical details. mjw
Title: Panthera Tigris
Author: Sylvain Alzial
Illustrator
: Helene Rajcak
Publisher
: Eerdmans Books for Young Readers. Grand Rapids, Michigan
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: French
Translator
: Vineet Lal and Sarah Ardizzone
Original Title
: Panthera Tigris
Original Publisher
: Rouergue. Paris
Original Copyright
: 2018
ISBN
: 978-0-802855299
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 5-9
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: India
Author’s ethnicity
: Born in Monaco
Author’s residence
: Paris
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: French
Illustrator’s residence
: Paris
Subjects
: Bengal tigers, Humor, Scientific expeditions