Leo the late bloomer by Robert Kraus; illustrated by Jose Aruego (1971)

[Published by Windmill Books]


It’s probably not very respectful, but I find Leo in his pre-blooming stage absolutely adorable. His father however is a little concerned by Leo’s inability to do anything right, he can’t read, write, draw or even talk. He is however the master of staring forlornly with his great big tigery eyes. That’s gotta count for something, surely?

“What’s the matter with Leo?” asked Leo’s father.

“Nothing,” said Leo’s mother.

“Leo is just a late bloomer.”

“Better late than never,” thought Leo’s father.”IMG_1885

It takes a long time, but finally after a lot of active non-watching by his father, everything comes together for wee Leo, and he does indeed bloom.

This delightful picture book is one you may remember from your own childhood. With its great message and wonderful illustrations, it is every bit as relevant today as it was when it was first published back in the 70s.

Check out Leo the late bloomer at Auckland Libraries.

Or buy Leo the Late Bloomer from Fishpond.


The skunk with no funk by Rebecca Young; illustrated by Leila Rudge (2015)

[Published by Walker Books Australia]


This book might be free of funk, but I’ll tell you what it did have, a giant cockroach stuck to its cover when I picked it up from my spare room. I’m not a total wimp, but I will admit it’s taken me some time to forgive old funk-less skunk-features enough to write a review. Everything is okay again now, and hopefully all the holes in our floor (courtesy of a house renovation) are covered so we will be cockroach-free in the future. Shaking it off…

When Woody was born he was lacking a vital detail, “Not a whiff of mud, not a sniff of swamp, not a dash of dung. No smell at all. Woody was a skunk with no funk!”

Woody’s mother worries for his safety, how can he possibly survive in the wild with no nasty smell to deter predators? She refuses to let him out of her sight. When Woody follows the song of a robin one day, he finds himself alone in the middle of a meadow. With hungry owls IMG_1828coming ever closer, Woody discovers that funk comes in many forms.

A beautifully told, wonderfully illustrated story.

Check out The skunk with no funk at Auckland Libraries.

Or buy The Skunk with No Funk from Fishpond.


Poppy Pickle, a little girl with a big imagination by Emma Yarlett (2015)

[Published by Templar Publishing]
Poppy Pickle is imagination central, she just bubbles and fizzes constantly with interesting ideas.

Mostly she manages to function as a normal girl, until the day she is sent upstairs to tidy her room. Not surprisingly, instead of tidying her room, she gets to work with some high quality imagining, and suddenly, the flying pig of her brain materialises before her!

It all gets chaotic after that. Well you’d want to see how far you could take it wouldn’t you? The cycling worm is probably my favourite Poppy-creation.IMG_1837

A room full of imagined beings gets noisy and eventually, out-of-control. When Poppy’s parents head upstairs to find out what’s going on, Poppy panics. And her room? Well let’s just say it hasn’t exactly benefited from Poppy’s “tidying” session.

Chock-a-block with wonderfully imaginative good times, today’s picture book made me very happy.

Check out Poppy Pickle at Auckland Libraries.

Or buy Poppy Pickle from Fishpond.


Room 20s reviews continue…

I might just make myself another cup of tea, the kids have got this…

Spoon by Amy Krouse Rosenthal; illustrated by Scott Magoon (2009)

[Published by Hyperion Books]20150624_101540

This book is about Spoon and his family, so you can say the title like this “SPOOON!!”

This is a comparing story and a silly story for children for bedtime. The characters in the story are Spoon, Fork, Knife and Chopsticks. At the end, everyone was not less than each other!

By Aminta and Crystal

Check out Spoon at Auckland Libraries.

Or buy Spoon from Fishpond.

Puss & Boots by Ayano Imai (2009)

[Published by Michael Neugebauer Pub Ltd] 20150624_101015

This is me and my partner’s review of Puss and Boots (our names are Paavi and Reeno). This is a story about a poor shoemaker and his cat who lived together. Business was bad but how it got better is a mystery for you.

This book is great for 7+ kids. A funny, sad little book with a lot of hard words.

By Reeno and Paavi

Check out Puss & Boots at Auckland Libraries.

Or buy Puss & Boots from Fishpond.

The foggy, foggy forest by Nick Sharratt (2008)

[Published by Walker Books]20150624_101116

Title: The foggy foggy forest

Like: There is always a mystery somewhere

This book is suitable for 7 and under

Dislike: Not much rhyming, dull colours

By Alisha and Aliya

[Disclaimer: Nick Sharratt you are my hero, these girls are tough critics!]

Check out The foggy, foggy forest by Nick Sharratt.

Or buy The Foggy, Foggy Forest from Fishpond.


I’d know you anywhere my love by Nancy Tillman (2013)

[Published by Feiwel and Friends]


Twitter-style review #3

Where do I start? So sweet. Parent compares child to adorable animals eg If you were a camel I’d know by your grin. Overflowing with love.




Check out I’d know you anywhere, my love at Auckland Libraries.

Or buy I’d Know You Anywhere, My Love from Fishpond.