Perfect Picture Book Friday – Spellbound

Welcome to Perfect Picture Book Friday!

I know I should probably have a Memorial Day book to share today in recognition of this weekend, but as many of you know, I am living in New Baby Land, so I have a magical new sibling story instead ๐Ÿ˜Š

Title: Spellbound

Written By: Jess Townes

Illustrated By: Jennifer Harney

Publisher: Union Square Kids, June 21, 2022, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 3-5

Themes/Topics: new sibling

text copyright Jess Townes 2022, illustration copyright Jennifer Harney 2022, Union Square Kids

Opening: “Willow loved magic.
And in her home, magic was all around.
It resided in the roots. It lingered in the leaves.
It blossomed on the branches.
And when it was ready, the magic wandered
on warm breezes in search of an apprentice.
Because magic, after all, is meant to be shared.”

Brief Synopsis: (From the publisher): “Willow’s world is perfectly magical, until Rowan is born. When her new baby brother seems to enchant everyone he meets, Willow becomes convinced he is an actual, real-life wizard. Can Willow put a stop to his hocus pocus, or is Rowan’s magic too powerful to resist?”

text copyright Jess Townes 2022, illustration copyright Jennifer Harney 2022, Union Square Kids

Links To Resources: Peek-a-boo, finger play rhymes like Itsy Bitsy Spider and Patty Cake, playing with rattles or musical instruments, singing songs, making funny faces or using silly voices to get baby to laugh – these are all things that children can do with new siblings to engage with them and help build a bond, making the older sibling feel valued, important, and included.

text copyright Jess Townes 2022, illustration copyright Jennifer Harney 2022, Union Square Kids

Why I Like This Book: Willow’s world is full of magic and she is the center of it. She mesmerizes her mom, dazzles her dad, and charms her bunny. But along comes Rowan and suddenly everyone is mesmerized, dazzled, and charmed by him! What kind of magic is this?! Every child who has gotten a new sibling knows the worry of being displaced, the jealousy when parents pay attention to the baby, the fear that maybe now that the newcomer is here, they don’t matter any more. Willow is determined that even if everyone else falls under Rowan’s spell, she won’t! But though she casts a spell on her ears so she won’t hear his laughter, and a charm over her eyes so she won’t see how cute he is, even she can’t resist him when he calls his big sister by her name. A lovely, lively, magical twist on a new sibling story with beautiful art that feels magical, too. A great choice for new big brothers and sisters, and a fun story for anyone ๐Ÿ˜Š

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Happy Memorial Day, with gratitude to all who serve and have served! Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Some Daddies

I’m not quite sure how this week flew by so fast (oh, wait… maybe it was partly because I posted so late last week ๐Ÿ˜Š) but here we are at Perfect Picture Book Friday again!

With Father’s Day just a month away, I have a wonderful, brand new book about Dads of every kind to share with you this week! I think it’s a great book for anytime, but it’s especially appropriate at this time of year.

Title: Some Daddies

Written By: Carol Gordon Ekster

Illustrated By: Javiera Maclean Alvarez

Publisher: Beaming Books, May 17, 2022

Suitable For Ages: 4-7

Themes/Topics: fathers/families

Opening: “Every daddy is different.
Some daddies wake up whistling.
Others need time before they talk.
Some joke around and tell stories.
Others like to listen.”

text copyright Carol Gordon Ekster 2022, illustration copyright Javiera Maclean Alvarez 2022, Beaming Books

Brief Synopsis: a celebration of the incredible diversity of modern fathers with an inclusive cast of characters and a wide array of fathers that will allow readers to catch glimpses of, and feel new appreciation for, their own fathers and father-figures and how they shine in their own unique ways.

Links To Resources: Father’s Day Activities For Kids; Father’s Day Crafts, Activities, Games and Printables

text copyright Carol Gordon Ekster 2022, illustration copyright Javiera Maclean Alvarez 2022, Beaming Books

Why I Like This Book: I love that such a broad view of fatherhood is taken in this book. Fathers of many races, cultures, occupations, and interests, as well as a two-dad family, a single dad, and a stay-at-home dad are pictured so that every child will likely find some representation of their own father or father-figure. I think it’s wonderful for young readers to be introduced to the many kinds of things fathers can do, be like, and participate in so they can understand that not everyone’s father/father-figure is exactly like their own, and get a sense of the possibilities that exist for them someday. This is a lovely book to read around Father’s Day, or any time ๐Ÿ˜Š

text copyright Carol Gordon Ekster 2022, illustration copyright Javiera Maclean Alvarez 2022, Beaming Books

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Pigeon & Cat

Welcome to Perfect Picture Book Friday, Everyone!

I have such a beautiful book about friendship, community, and learning to open your heart and trust the world around you. It was written and illustrated by Edward Hemingway, youngest grandson of Ernest, (and is a far cry from my 9th grade reading of A Farewell To Arms ๐Ÿ˜Š) It is due out on June 21 and I think it’s a book classrooms and libraries can benefit from as well as home libraries. Have a look!

Title: Pigeon & Cat

Written & Illustrated By: Edward Hemingway

Publisher: Christy Ottaviano Books/Little Brown & Co, June 21, 2022

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics: friendship, community, creativity, personal growth

Opening: “In an abandoned city lot there sits a cardboard box. Inside the box lives Cat.”

text & illustration copyright Edward Hemingway 2022, Christy Ottaviano Books

Brief Synopsis: from the publisher: “In an abandoned city lot, Cat lives alone in a cardboard box. He leaves only to find food. One day, Cat discoversย an unbroken egg too beautiful to eat. Soon, out pecks Pigeon, and they become fast friends. Cat is happy to share his box with Pigeon. But when Pigeon flies far away from where they live, Cat must brave the city in order to rescue his friend. This journey will forever transform his understanding of home.

This heartwarming story explores unlikely friendships, the creative spark within us, and how to give comfort and kindnessย in small, impactful gestures. It is also a celebration of urban community.”

text & illustration copyright Edward Hemingway 2022, Christy Ottaviano Books

Links To Resources: as a parent or teacher, encourage your kids to be part of their communities – family, school, neighborhood. Look at family photos so kids learn who family members are and how important they are to you. Make a family storybook using photos, including birthdays and addresses and relationships so kids gain a solid understanding of their family community. Participate in school activities beyond the classroom – book fairs, sports events, school plays. Get out in the local community with your kids. Are there opportunities for helping with recycling, planting trees or flowers, making cards for seniors at holidays? If not, maybe you can start one ๐Ÿ˜Š

text & illustration copyright Edward Hemingway 2022, Christy Ottaviano Books

Why I Like This Book: It can be easy for anyone who has faced hardship, hurt, or disappointment to wall themselves off from the world as a measure of self protection. So Cat lives his life, staying where he feels safe, never venturing forth, and threatening all he encounters with hisses, teeth, and claws because the world is frightening to him. But along comes Pigeon who has never known anything but love – Cat’s love for her and hers for him – and over the course of the story Cat opens his heart and his mind and comes to realize that the world can be a good and beautiful place to which he has a lot to offer, and maybe, just maybe, it has something to offer him. This book is a sweet and lovely celebration of friendship and community, taking something rough and making it better for everyone. The art is engaging, full of details. I love the places where Cat and Pigeon talk, because Pigeon has her own way of communicating, all in pictures ๐Ÿ˜Š I can’t imagine anyone not loving this book!

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Little Tiger

Okay.

So, in my mind I had this plan that I was going to post a Perfect Picture Book (on time!) today.

In reality, I am spending my days helping out with my new granddaughter.

“Helping out” (in case you’re unfamiliar with the term) in addition to actually helping out with baby care and laundry and grocery shopping etc. involves a lot of gazing at the baby and looking at each other and saying, “Isn’t she perfect?” and “Can you believe how perfect she is?”

SO…. not a lot of non-baby related work getting done around here at the moment! ๐Ÿ˜Š

So instead of sharing a new book on time, I am sharing an old book late ๐Ÿ˜Š

I chose Little Tiger because Charlotte, having been born in the Year of the Tiger, is a little tiger, and because I love this whole series by Julie Abery – perfect little books for youngest readers!

Little Tiger Cover

Title: Little Tiger

Written By: Julie Abery

Illustrated By: Suzie Mason

Amicus Ink, March 12 2019, fiction

Suitable For Ages: 3-5

Themes/Topics: baby jungle adventure, mother/child love, language fun (rhyme)

Opening:
Little Tiger
waking,
shaking,
in the morning sun.”

Brief Synopsis: a “day-in-the-life” adventure in which Little Tiger romps and plays and experiments… but mama is always close by to watch over and keep him safe.

Links To Resources: Special Resource straight from the author!!!

Hi Susanna.

Thank you so much for inviting Little Tiger to Blueberry Hill. We have been looking forward to visiting you on Perfect Picture Book Friday for such a long time!

We are so happy that you and your granddaughters loved our book sooo much! How about a little painting fun to go with the book.

Little Tiger handprintsโ€ฆ

tigerhand

TIGER-ific!

Fun and easy to make, just donโ€™t forget to have a bowl of soapy water to wash those paint-covered hands.

We hope that you enjoyed the Little Tiger craft time.

Thank you so much for taking time to stop by and share these wonderful activities with us, Julie!!!

Why I Like This Books: the story is sweet, engaging, and accessible to youngest readers/listeners. ย The rhyme is fun to read aloud, with perfect rhythm and fun internal rhyme as well as end-of-line-rhyme. The story lets us play and explore along with the baby animal, always feeling the safety of mama’s watchful eye and the warmth of her love. A lovely, gentle read, perfect for bedtime or any time!!!

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ™‚ ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Brand New โค๏ธ

My perfect picture book for this week is the most special kind of story of all. A brand new one that is just beginning, surrounded by love, and with wonder, hope, light, and every kind of beautiful possibility shining from it.

Welcome, Charlotte Susanna! We’re so very glad you’re here โค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธ

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Marilyn’s Monster PLUS A Giveaway Winner!

Woo hoo!  It’s Friday!!!

And you know what that means, boys and girls…

It’s time for Perfect Picture Books!

(Although truth be told, I’m not even here today! You might have guessed that, given the tardiness of this post. I am in the Green Mountains visiting my daughter! ๐Ÿ˜Š)

First off, I’m happy to announce the winner of last week’s giveaway!!! JENNY MORALES, come on down! You are the lucky winner of your choice of either a copy of GARDENS ARE FOR GROWING by Chelsea Tornetto, OR, a PB Manuscript Critique from Chelsea!!! Please email me (you can use the handy contact form in the menu bar above) and I’ll get you set up with your winnings! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Now, then! I can’t say today’s choice relates to the time of year or anything that’s going on.  I just loved this book from the opening sentence, and I hope you will too!

Title: Marilyn’s Monster
Written By: Michelle Knudsen
Illustrated By: Matt Phelan
Candlewick, March 2015, Fiction

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics: patience/waiting, monsters, doing what you know is right

Opening: “Some of the kids in Marilyn’s class had monsters.  It was the latest thing.  Marilyn didn’t have a monster.  Not yet.  You couldn’t just go out and get one.  Your monster had to find you.  That’s just the way it worked.”

text copyright Michelle Knudson 2017, illustration copyright Matt Phelan 2017, Candlewick

Brief Synopsis:  Marilyn longs for her monster to find her.  She tries to be patient and be the kind of girl no monster can resist.  But the longer she waits, the harder it gets, until finally Marilyn takes matters into her own hands.  And it’s a good thing she does!

Links To Resources: Marilyn’s Monster Story Time Kit; Q&A with Michelle Knudsen and Matt Phelan

text copyright Michelle Knudson 2017, illustration copyright Matt Phelan 2017, Candlewick

Why I Like This Book: Oh, gosh!  Where to begin?  The story is wonderfully original and entertaining, and relates to a theme all kids can understand – having to wait for things!  Marilyn is so believably child-like in her behaviors and emotions.  The art is delightful, full of wacky monsters that are tons of fun to look at, and Marilyn’s face and body language are so expressive.  Marilyn goes against expectation without being disobedient or breaking any rules, so it’s a nice way to model doing what you know is right, or being true to yourself.  And the resolution is surprisingly sweet.  Across the board, this one is a winner!

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ™‚ ) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Gardens Are For Growing PLUS A Giveaway!!!

Welcome to today’s edition of Perfect Picture Book Friday!

I have a lovely book to share – perfect for spring time! It makes me want to get out and garden (and I have a black thumb, so that’s saying something! ๐Ÿ˜Š) I’m sure it will have the same affect on you and any young readers you share it with.

As an added bonus, we have a little Q&A with the author, Chelsea Tornetto, who is also offering winner’s choice of a picture book manuscript critique or a copy of her beautiful book to one lucky commenter! So please leave a comment on this post by Wednesday April 20 at 9PM Eastern and you could be the randomly selected lucky winner! Check out Chelsea’s critique service HERE so you can see what she offers!

Now, let’s have a look at the book!

Title: Gardens Are For Growing

Written By: Chelsea Tornetto

Illustrated By: Hsulynn Pang

Publisher: Familius Publishing

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics: gardens/nature, growth, family, cycle of life

text copyright Chelsea Tornetto 2022, illustration coptright Hsulynn Pang 2022, Familius

Opening: “Shovels are for turning soil,
and clumps are meant for breaking.”

text copyright Chelsea Tornetto 2022, illustration coptright Hsulynn Pang 2022, Familius

Brief Synopsis: A father shows his daughter how to take a patch of earth and till and plant and tend until it grows into a beautiful garden. As the garden grows more lush with every passing year, the little girl grows up.

text copyright Chelsea Tornetto 2022, illustration coptright Hsulynn Pang 2022, Familius

Links To Resources: First, a treat! A little Q&A with author Chelsea Tornetto!

SUSANNA: How did you come up with the idea for Gardens Are For Growing?

CHELSEA: My husband puts in a backyard garden every year.ย  When our daughter, Tessa, was small, my favorite thing about spring and summer was watching her hanging out in the garden with her dad.ย  As she grew older the tasks she could/would help with changed, but theย memories they made were always precious.ย  It struck me how she was growing up just like the garden did each year.ย  And Gardens Are For Growing was born!

SUSANNA: What do you hope kids will take away from it?

CHELSEA: I hope families are inspired to take time to get outside together!ย  I also hope it helps them realize that the best, most powerful memories are usually made in the small moments.ย  You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on a big fancy vacation to make lasting memories.ย ย 

SUSANNA: What is your favorite part of being an author?

CHELSEA: I love the creativity of it.ย  I love the challenge of finding just the right word to complete a rhyme or create a certain feeling.ย  And I love giving my words to a talented illustrator and seeing their vision come to life!

SUSANNA: Thank you so much for sharing that with us, Chelsea! It’s so wonderful to know a little about the background of the books we love!

Next, some wonderful activity pages!

Why I Like This Book: This lovely story, told in rhyme, shows young readers the many things involved with growing a garden, from breaking up the earth, to sowing seeds and watering, to seeing earthworms, to watching things grow. With each turn of the page, the garden grows, going from a patch of earth, to neat garden with thin, young plants, until eventually it is a lush, mature garden. As the garden grows, a young girl grows alongside it, until the garden, the seasons, and the girl and her father together demonstrate the cycle of life. The art is bright and full of details, a wonderful complement to the text. Young gardeners (whether in the country with a true patch of earth, or in the city with a pot on a windowsill) will especially love this chance to learn about gardening, but it is a beautiful story anyone will enjoy.

text copyright Chelsea Tornetto 2022, illustration coptright Hsulynn Pang 2022, Familius

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! Happy Passover and Happy Easter to everyone who celebrates! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Don’t forget to leave a comment for your chance to be randomly selected to win your choice of a copy of this book or a picture book manuscript critique from Chelsea!

Perfect Picture Book Friday – This Could Be You

It’s Friday!

Thank goodness!

I’m sure none of us could have waited another minute for this week’s list of Perfect Picture Books!

I have a lovely one to share today. I’m pretty sure it’s been reviewed by a couple of other members of this group already, but I wanted to share it, too. It’s a wonderful book, and it was written by a graduate of Making Picture Book Magic, so I get to give you a recommendation and celebrate her accomplishment at the same time! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Title: This Could Be You

Written By: Cindy Williams Schrauben

Illustrated By: Julia Seal

Publisher: Cardinal Rule Press, April 1, 2022

Suitable For Ages: 4-8

Themes/Topics: being yourself, believing in yourself

Opening: “Who pursues their top dreams,
their never-ever stop dreams,
persist-until-they-drop dreams?
Believe. It could be you!”

text copyright Cindy Williams Schrauben 2022, illustration copyright Julia Seal 2022, Cardinal Rule Press

Brief Synopsis: This book is an invitation to children of all backgrounds, interests, and abilities to follow their dreams and believe in themselves.

text copyright Cindy Williams Schrauben 2022, illustration copyright Julia Seal 2022, Cardinal Rule Press

Links To Resources: the back of the book includes a guide to encouraging a growth mindset; what do YOU want to be? try a recipe (chef), plant a seed (gardener), do an experiment (scientist). . . or whatever interests YOU!; Growth Mindset Activity Sheet, Growth Mindset Bingo, and other activities from author’s website

text copyright Cindy Williams Schrauben 2022, illustration copyright Julia Seal 2022, Cardinal Rule Press

Why I Like This Book: Every child can benefit from encouragement to be themselves, pursue their dreams, believe they can be or do anything they want, and this book celebrates exactly that. It is an invitation to young readers to imagine themselves in all kinds of ways they may not have considered. Every child will be able to see her or himself as at least one of the many kinds of people shown – creative, supportive, persistent, adventurous, inquisitive, observant, protective. . . And for many kids the options will be eye-opening, showing them things they could be or do that they might not have known about yet. The illustrations are warm, colorful, and appealing with plenty of details to catch kids’ attention and interest. The children pictured are a nicely diverse group. Kids will enjoy exploring all the possibilities open to them while absorbing the important message that they can be whoever they want to be, and that they are valued and should value themselves. A lovely read!

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – A Family Is. . .

Hello, my friends!

Welcome to another installment of Perfect Picture Book Friday! (And that’s no April Fool ๐Ÿ˜Š)

To start the day’s festivities, I’m happy to announce that the winner of last week’s book giveaway, JACKIE AND THE MONA LISA, is Stephanie M! Congratulations, Stephanie! I think you will love it! Please email me with your address (you can use the contact button in the menu bar above), and I will have the publisher mail out your copy!

Now! Let’s get to today’s book! Such a perfect little gem!

This book is actually a companion to A FRIEND IS. . .(reviewed HERE on PPBF in January 2021), and if you haven’t had a chance to check that one out, I recommend reading it too! For those of you who might live in the Mid-Hudson Valley area, you can meet today’s author/illustrator and get a signed copy of both these books at the Poughkeepsie Book Festival tomorrow! I will also be there, as will Iza Trapani, Karen Kaufman Orloff, Della Ferreri, Tania Guarino, Michael Garland, Nancy Furstinger, Marie-Therese Miller, Raven Howell, and lots of others!

But now, the book!

Title: A Family Is. . .

Written & Illustrated By: Lisa Thiesing

Publisher: Aladdin, March 8, 2022

Suitable For Ages: 4-8 (but I think younger children would really enjoy it too!)

Themes/Topics: family

Opening: “A family is. . . for “Good morning!”
A family is. . .for having breakfast and for getting dressed.”

text and illustration copyright Lisa Thiesing 2022 Aladdin

Brief Synopsis: (from the publisher) “Whether big or small, a family is for reading, for laughing, for holding you tight. And, perhaps most importantly, loving you for who you are.”

text and illustration copyright Lisa Thiesing 2022 Aladdin

Links To Resources: make your own A Family Is. . . book by writing and/or drawing something family means to you on each page; make playdough families with different sized cookie cutters in the shape of people, or bears or other animals; draw a picture of your whole family; make a family tree; Family Themed Finger Plays and Action Songs

text and illustration copyright Lisa Thiesing 2022 Aladdin

Why I Like This Book: This sweet book gives young readers a lovely and very accessible description of what family means. Each page highlights ways families spend time together, from having breakfast and getting dressed to walking in the park and biking, to parties and games. But the book also reminds kids that, on a deeper level, families are about being together and belonging. As always for me, Lisa’s art takes a charming text and makes it even better. Her color palette is soft and appealing, her characters are delightful, and her depiction of family makes you want to climb right into the book and join the fun and the love. A perfect story for bed time or any time, and especially for when someone needs a little extra reminder of how much they are treasured in their own family.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! ๐Ÿ˜Š

Perfect Picture Book Friday – Jackie And The Mona Lisa PLUS A Giveaway!

It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday and I have a wonderful treat for you!

A great Perfect Picture Book, a little insight from the author, 3 fabulous activity pages, and the chance for one of you (US resident only) to win a copy of the book just by leaving a comment in the comment section below by Wednesday March 30 at 9PM Eastern!

I really enjoyed this book, so I hope you’ll like it too!

Title: Jackie And The Mona Lisa

Written By: Deborah Rovin Murphy

Illustrated By: Jen Brickling

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press, March 15, 2022, nonfiction

Suitable For Ages: 6-8

Themes/Topics: American History, Jackie Kennedy, art appreciation

Opening: “Jackie Kennedy loved poetry. She loved dance and music. And she loved art. In 1961, Jackie became the First Lady of the United States. And everyone loved Jackie. More than that, everyone wanted to be just like her.”

Text copyright Debbie Rovin Murphy 2022, illustration copyright Jen Brickling 2022, Sleeping Bear Press

Brief Synopsis: From the publisher: “Jackie Kennedy loved the arts. And America loved Jackie Kennedy. The first lady knew she had the country’s attention–what would she do with it? Encourage Americans to appreciate art, of course! She turned the White House into a historical site filled with some of America’s most treasured artifacts and pieces of art. She brought Shakespearean theater to the White House and ballerinas to the South Lawn. And most epically, she brought the Mona Lisa to the states (much to the chagrin of many Parisians) to encourage Americans to visit museums–and it worked! An inspiring story about one of the nation’s most influential first ladies.”

Text copyright Debbie Rovin Murphy 2022, illustration copyright Jen Brickling 2022, Sleeping Bear Press

Links To Resources: The back matter of the book has additional information about both Jackie Kennedy and the Mona Lisa. Please see below for some activity pages you can use with the book.

I asked Debbie what inspired her to write JACKIE AND THE MONA LISA, and she responded: “Growing up, art was always my favorite class. I teach second grade now (which I love) but had also dreamed about becoming an art teacher. This, combinedย with my love of history and museums,ย and my admiration of Jackie Kennedy, came together to inspire me to writeย Jackie and the Mona Lisa. Another reason for writing this particular story is my love for all of the “little known stories” in history or incredibly interesting stories that have been lost in time that I believe kids (and adults) would love to know. When I hear someone say that history is boring… I just think that they haven’t heard all of the interesting stories and anecdotes that correspond with all of the names, dates, and people we are taught to remember. I hope that this book can inspire children to go to museums and learn about the arts.”

A little bit about the author:

Author Debbie Rovin Murphy is a childrenโ€™s book writer, teacher (of more than 25 years), and mother to two grown sons. She has loved visiting museums since her class trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Art when she was in elementary school, and she was lucky enough to have seen the Mona Lisa on a trip to France.ย She lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

ย Here are a few activity pages to use with the book:

Why I Like This Book: I found this book interesting, accessible, and engagingly written. I learned a lot about Jackie Kennedy’s time as First Lady and her passion for the arts. It was wonderful to have a glimpse of someone who seems so elegant searching through the White House basement! The story (without ever saying anything preachy!) clearly sends the message that if something is important to you, you can accomplish it if you put yourself into it. Young readers will really enjoy this book about everything Jackie Kennedy did for the arts in America.

Text copyright Debbie Rovin Murphy 2022, illustration copyright Jen Brickling 2022, Sleeping Bear Press

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do ๐Ÿ˜Š

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out ๐Ÿ˜Š) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! ๐Ÿ˜Š Don’t forget to leave a comment below by Wednesday March 30 at 9PM Eastern for your chance to be randomly selected to win a copy of this wonderful book! (US residents only – sorry!)