The Colors Of Christmas (Jill Howarth)

Hello, friends! Our book today is The Colors Of Christmas by Jill Howarth, a cheery look at the rainbow of colors we see during the holiday season.

Latest in a playful series of holiday board books, our tale begins in a tiny town of mice residents, all busily preparing for Christmas Eve. And with every preparation and tradition, with every gift wrapped and cookie baked, the holiday is positively filled with color. There‘s the bright red of Santa’s suit, the crisp white of the falling snow, the lush greens of trees and garlands, the silver tinsel on every bough, and much more. At last, when Christmas morning dawns, the town is abuzz with excitement and festivities – and of course, plenty of color.

Adorable! Howarth’s board books – with her retro folk-inspired artwork featuring vibrant hues and charming animals – are always a delight. And her command of color is put to fantastic work here, exploring how each shade of the rainbow can be part of Christmas. The examples are sound, and never feel like a stretch, even for colors that may not immediately come to mind for the holiday. It’s a great way to encourage young readers learning their colors to look for them in their own holiday, and JJ had a fabulous time spotting the examples within each color-themed spread. The length is perfect for a quick read, and the rhyming text is bouncy and flows well. This makes for a lovely Christmastime read for little bookworms, and we recommend it. Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

Be Quiet! (Ryan T. Higgins)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Be Quiet! by Ryan T. Higgins, a hilarious story of three mice trying to make a wordless book, and failing spectacularly.

Rupert the mouse is very excited to finally have a picture book of his own, and he knows exactly what kind of picture book he wants to do: a wordless one. They’re very stylish, you see. They need to have visually stimulating images and, most importantly, no talking. When his friends Nibbs and Thistle stumble upon his plan, they are eager to help in any way they can. In fact, they’re almost TOO helpful. And worst of all, they just won’t stop TALKING! Will Rupert ever be able to create the wordless picture book of his dreams? (No, probably not).

If you enjoyed Higgins’ Mother Bruce, you are in for a treat, because his signature absurdist humor is back with a bang. Using the mischievous mice from Hotel Bruce, this story is filled with the type of ridiculous jokes that little ones adore, and it definitely even had me laughing out loud as well! The art is fantastic, filled with expressive characters and wonderful visual gags. The length is great, and JJ really enjoyed this one, as did I. If you’re in the mood for a good laugh, we can highly recommend this one. Baby Bookworm approved!

Boo To You! (Lois Ehlert)

Halloween Week, Day 3: Hello, everybody! Our book today is Boo To You! by Lois Ehlert, a story about some tricky mice, told with harvest-themed collage art.

The mice are setting up for their harvest dinner with their friends Squirrel and Racoon, but they are all frightened that the cat (a meat-eater) will find out and crash the party. So all together, they use their autumn vegetables to create a scary costume to frighten the cat off.

This book definitely had a different art style, and I’m still not sure how I feel about it. On the one hand, the use of different autumnal veggies, squash and other harvestables in the collages to create the animals is neat, and the fact that the veggies are all identified in a glossary at the end is cool, because readers can go back and try to identify them page-by-page. But, to be frank, the overall effect of the collages is underwhelming. The color scheme is going for autumnal but just looks sort of dingy. The story itself is okay, but doesn’t really stand up to the much bolder visuals. The length is fine for baby bookworms, and JJ sat through it, but this one sort of left us feeling a bit “meh.” Still, we had no major issues with it, and other readers might enjoy it more, so we will technically call this one Baby Bookworm approved.

How To Catch A Mouse (Philippa Leathers)

Summer Reading Day 64: Today’s pick was How To Catch A Mouse by Philippa Leathers, a ridiculously cute story about a little cat named Clemmie who believes she is the world’s greatest mouse-scarer because she’s never even seen a mouse. The humor is in her attempts to locate a mouse in her home while a mouse in disguise follows her around without her noticing.

This is a sweet, silly story that will really amuse children, and it’s really fun to find the hiding mouse in each illustration. The illustrations are adorable, and you will fall in love with Clemmie and her expressions. Great length for Baby Bookworm, so we can definitely give it our stamp of approval!