PreK Bits - "C" is for Cookie!

Cookie Monster says, "C is for Cookie!"
That's good enough for Ms. Rachel in Storytime too!
IF YOU GIVE A MOUSE A COOKIE is a cautionary tale that takes you in a circle right back where you started from.
Banjo Betsy and Ms. Rachel led the action song "Gonna Walk, Walk, Walk" ... until we need to "Sit Down."
This action song can be found on the the following recordings ... HONK! HONK! RATTLE! RATTLE! and RISE And SHINE.
The WOLF’S CHICKEN STEW is a Chef's kitchen story. The Wolf is fattening up Ms. Chicken for his stew ... but there is a surprise.
All of his cooking is successful in a new way!

If you like cookies, you may enjoy more favorite "Cookie" stories as follows:
B. BEAR And LOLLY: Catch That Cookie!
The GINGERBREAD MAN LOST IN SCHOOL … and many more versions of the Gingerbread characters.
SUGAR COOKIES: sweet little lessons on love
FABULOUS FOOD … a recorded CD full of songs and rhythm including “Who Stole The Cookies”!
And don't forget to play with Cookie Monster in C Is For COOKIE!

Who Done It?

That’s the name of a super cute new picture book! Who Done It? by Olivier Tallec does not feature a story, but a series of simple who questions and matching sets of illustrations where the reader figures out which image answers the question of who did a particular thing. It’s adorable! Some are pretty funny and kids will get a kick out of them. It’s a great book that further encourages children to use visual clues to help understand the world around them as well as gain insight into human emotion.

Fabulous Fiction Firsts #581 “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ~ Rumi

A bestseller in its native Spain, love in lowercase by Francesc Miralles (translated by Julie Wark) is a delightful romantic comedy in the tradition of The Rosie Project and The Solitude of Prime Numbers, where a series of surprising events lends a solitary bachelor a second chance at love.

New Year Eve. 37 year-old Samuel, a linguistics lecturer could hardly wait to turn in after observing the Twelve Grapes ritual alone in his Barcelona apartment. Accustomed to a routine of lesson-planning, housework, books, foreign films, classical jazz, and the thrill of an occasional trip to the supermarket, he would hardly believe that all that will change on New Year’s Day when a cat decides to take up residence in his home, and forces him to interact with the messy outside world.

The cat, which he named Mishima first sends him upstairs to meet Titus, a frail book editor who, in turn sends him on an errand where he crosses paths with Gabriela, his lost childhood love. Along the way Samuel learns the importance of what he terms "love in lowercase", a phenomenon in which “some small act of kindness sets off a chain of events that comes around again in the form of multiplied love” and inspires him to seek out Gabriela.

Listen to the Publishers Weekly's radio podcast as Francesc Miralles discusses his novel, also available in Spanish in our World Language Collection.

LAST DAY to enter the "Write On!" Short Story Contest!

Today is the last day for writers in 3rd-5th grade to enter a story in the "Write On!" Short Story Contest! Please make sure you have checked the guidelines, then send it by email to or drop off a paper copy at the Youth desk Downtown. The story submission mailbox will close at midnight tonight. Happy writing!

Giant Days brings Giant Entertainment

I'm a big fan of Boom! comics and their various imprints. They are the company who brought us Lumberjanes, and Mr. Stuffins (the best comic you'll ever read about a James Bond-like teddy bear). Now with Giant Days by John Allison, they have made a wonderful slice-of-life comic for the teen reader.

The comic follows three freshers (this is the British term for new university students) as they go about their lives during the first year of university. The stories are not grand and epic like Lumberjanes but rather they are small and meaningful. You really get to know the characters and there are opportunities throughout the comic to connect with what's going on with them, whether that's boyfriends, toxic friendships, or rescuing a friend from a trashy nightclub (and many many other such real life adventures).

The artwork is superb, with each of the characters and the locations really having a strong sense of individuality. So if you're looking for a comic that really connects you with wonderful characters, then Giant Days is a must read!

Fabulous Fiction Firsts #580

"Absorbing, intriguing, insightful" raved a reviewer of The 6:41 to Paris * by Jean-Philippe Blondel; a brilliant psychological thriller though there's nary a crime in sight.

This European bestseller is narrated by Cecile Duffaut and Philippe Leduc, lovers who parted 27 years ago as they meet by chance on the 6:41 morning train bound for Paris. Cecile has just spent a dreary weekend dutifully visiting her parents. The only empty seat in the train compartment is claimed by none other than Philippe. Though they each recognize the other at once, neither acknowledges it.

The once plain and socially-awkward Cecile is now a successful business owner, married with grown children, confident and stylishly dressed while the once handsome, charming and care-free Philippe is unrecognizable - "old, wrinkled, flabby, the kind of man that inspires pity." This gives Cecile no small satisfaction as she remembers Philippe's betrayal and her humiliation on a trip to London so painful that she cannot bear to return to the city. In the time it takes the 6:41 train to reach Paris, their thoughts compellingly trace the meandering paths between who they once were and who they are now.

"A fast, yet deep journey through the characters' experiences of anger, triumph, remorse, and forgiveness, Blondel's novel ... reminds us that even long-ago heartbreaks have the power to ignite our most powerful emotions."

"Funny, wise and conciliatory."

Read-alikes: The Forgiven by Lawrence Osborne; Trains and Lovers by Alexander McCall Smith; and The London Train by Tessa Hadley

* = starred review

PreK Bits - "B" is for BUNNIES

Ms. Rachel brought "Bunny" stories to Preschool Storytime @ Malletts Creek Branch.
Max and Ruby went shopping in ... BUNNY MONEY by Rosemary Wells.
Ms. Betsy accompanied with her ukulele for "Wheels On The Bus" ... since Max and Ruby took the bus downtown.
The BUNNIES ARE NOT IN THEIR BEDS ... a bedtime story. 'Nuff said! =)

For more Favorite Bunny stories try the following:
The HOUSE OF 12 BUNNIES ... another bunny bedtime story.
WOLFIE The BUNNY ... there's a new baby in the home.
TOO MANY CARROTS ... and time to share.
MUNCHA! MUNCHA! MUNCHA! and TIPPY-TIPPY-TIPPY, HIDE ... and Mr. McGreely's garden.
HERE IS BIG BUNNY ... a story of size and scale.
KNUFFLE BUNNY: a cautionary tale … the Knuffle Bunny series by Mo Willems ... stories of an essential member of the family.
The COMPLETE ADVENTURES Of PETER RABBIT and more Classic treasures by Beatrix Potter.
COUNTRY BUNNY And The LITTLE GOLDEN SHOES ... a classic by Dubose Heyward.
WIGGLE your nose, FLOP your ears, HOP your tail ... 'cuz that's what BUNNIES do too.

The Bear…

Benjamin Chaud has written and illustrated some lovely picture books for children! I really enjoyed The Bear’s Song, and the next adventures for bear in these new ones in the series are sweet as well.

They are large format with small nearly full-page illustrations, which is perfect for little ones to play “I Spy,” like in Where's Waldo, to follow along in the pictures while the words are read aloud to them. In The Bear’s Sea Escape Papa bear is looking for a place to hibernate and follows Baby Bear to a cruise ship, and winds up on a tropical island. In The Bear’s Surprise Little Bear searches for his father along a forest path that leads him to a mysterious cave, an exciting circus, and a family surprise.

They are all fun little adventure stories that keeps young readers entertained.

Explore how machines work in a new hands-on book for kids!

Explore the mechanics of simple machines with the help of two zoo animals in the awesome new hands-on book How Machines Work: Zoo Break!. Sloth and Sengi have spent their entire lives in their zoo enclosure and even though it’s pretty comfortable, they both long to see more of the world. So, with the help of some simple machines, they decide to break out! The coolest thing about this book is the lift-the-flap and fold-out features, which allow readers to see how machines work and move. Sloth and Sengi make use of wedges, wheels and axles, levers, inclined planes, screws and pulleys to stage their escape, and it’s fun to see their successes… and their failures. This book presents machines in simple, easy-to-understand language, and the fun storyline will pull kids in. Even the cover of this book is interactive, featuring gears that readers can actually turn to see Sloth get dipped into a pond!

For other cool books about machines, check out The Lego Technic Idea Book Simple Machines, National Geographic’s 125 Cool Inventions and The Kids’ Book of Simple Machines: cool projects & activities that make science fun.

Friday 2/12 is the last day to submit your entry for the 3rd-5th Grade “Write On!” Short Story Contest!

There's still time to check out the contest page and read the guidelines for details on how to submit your awesome story!

Email your completed story to or drop it off at the Downtown Library Youth Desk (343 S. Fifth Ave) now through Friday February 12.

Need some last minute tips? Check out the following books:

Spilling Ink

Writer to Writer: from think to ink

How to Write About Your Adventure

In the words of C.S. Lewis, “You can make anything by writing!”

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