Review: Comics Squad: Recess!

comics squad recess

Comics Squad: Recess!

Released July 8, 2014.

Join your favorite children’s graphic novel authors as they romp together in a celebration of recess!  This graphic novel has been contributed to by authors like Jennifer and Matthew Holm, Jarrett Krosoczka, Dan Santat, Gene Luen Yang, and Raina Telgemeier.  Favorite characters like Lunch Lady and Babymouse make an appearance in their own stories as well as appearing throughout the book with a little commentary.   In other stories, new characters make their first appearance which will delight young fans.

It’s hard to be too enthusiastic about this title, since young readers are sure to adore it.  The release in mid-summer is ideal since this will make great summer reading, though it will also be a great addition to any school library or classroom.  Put together cleverly, the book has a nice flow to it and a brisk pace that will have even reluctant readers eagerly turning the pages.

Get multiple copies of this one, since it’s sure to be a hit!  Appropriate for ages 7-10.

Reviewed from digital galley received from Random House and Edelweiss.

Review: From There to Here by Laurel Croza

from there to here

From There to Here by Laurel Croza, illustrated by Matt James

This sequel to the award-winning I Know Here continues the story of a little girl who has moved from Saskatchewan to Toronto.  She now contrasts their life in the rural woods with that in a new city.  So much of her days are different now.  Her father no longer comes home for lunch.  They live on a city street instead of a quiet gravel road.  Here they lock their doors, there everyone kept their homes open.  There you could see the stars in the sky at night, here there are only the lamps shining.  There the children played all together and there wasn’t anyone her age.  Here there is!

Croza deftly shows the differences between two places, drawing them each with an eye to the positive.  Even as the little girl misses and even yearns for her nature-filled home, she starts to see what is good about the new place she lives.  Any child who has undergone a move will see themselves in this book, yet Croza has also written a very personal story of one little girl.

James’ art is rich and layered.  He uses sweeps of colors on the page to convey motion and change.  At the same time, he also uses parallel images that show the similarities of the places at the same time examining the differences.

Another triumph of a picture book, children will enjoy this as a sequel but it also stands nicely on its own.  Appropriate for ages 4-6.

Reviewed from library copy.