Bergers Book Reviews

Little Old Farm Folk

Author & Illustrator: Andrea Wisnewski
Publisher: David R. Godine
Genre: Children / Board books
ISBN: 978-1-56792-594-4
Pages: 34
Price: $7.95

Author’s website
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A little old couple is busy with chores around the farm. Cooking, laundry, milking the cows, harvesting vegetables, and relaxing in the yard fill their days.

Each two page spread in this board book has an illustration of the farm couple in action, plus text explaining their actions. A teaser at the end of each section keeps children eager to discover what comes next.

Farm life is a fun concept for children. Little Old Farm Folk will keep them absorbed and enchanted as they read it over and over again.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

March 23, 2018 Posted by | children | Leave a comment

Franny’s Father is a Feminist

Author: Rhonda Leet
Illustrator: Megan Walker
Publisher: POW!
Genre: Children
ISBN: 978-1576878736
Pages: 32
Price: $17.99

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

Feminism has gotten a bad reputation lately, but if you look up the word in the dictionary, it simply means “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.” Franny’s father is totally on board with this. He believes Franny can do anything boys can do, and he helps her out as much as possible.

When Franny plays sports, he’s there to cheer her on. When she goes fishing, he shows her how to bait her own hook. And when her bicycle needs repairs, he makes sure she knows which tools to use. Franny’s dad doesn’t limit her to household chores like cooking and laundry. He lets her do the things she enjoys.

The illustrations of this burly, bearded man with his little pink-haired daughter are really precious. It’s obvious through his actions and expressions that he loves her dearly and wants what’s best for her. I enjoyed this unusual take on feminism, and I highly recommend Franny’s Father is a Feminist.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

March 19, 2018 Posted by | children | Leave a comment

Paw Patrol: Rescue Time

Author: Cara Stevens
Producer: Nickelodeon
Publisher: Studio Fun International
ISBN: 978-0-7944-3867-8
Pages: 32
Price: $18.99

Buy it at Amazon

In Pups Save a Tooth, the Paw Patrol is called to find a missing tooth, which was placed inside a carrot for safekeeping and has now disappeared. But once they locate the carrot, it isn’t quite so simple to bring it back.

Pups Save the Songbirds sends the Paw Patrol on a hunt for some missing songbirds. Their nests are full of eggs but the birds have vanished. First they need to protect the eggs, so the baby birds can hatch. Then they need to find out where the missing birds have gone and bring them back.

This two-story book also includes a projector watch, which allows kids to scroll through the images that correspond to the stories. Each image is indicated by a number in the text of the story. Fans of Paw Patrol will enjoy this fun book.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

March 1, 2018 Posted by | children, dogs | Leave a comment

Doll Crafts

Author: Laurie Carlson
Publisher: Chicago Review Press
Genre: Children / Crafts
ISBN: 978-1-61373-778-1
Pages: 144
Price: $14.99

Buy it at Amazon

Kids love to play with dolls, but they may not realize they’re also fun to make. Doll Crafts introduces kids to the many different kinds of dolls they can craft all by themselves.

Simple patterns and instructions are provided to create dolls from fabric, felt, paper, sticks, socks, and other materials. And kids can customize faces, build houses, and create clothing for the dolls they build. Even doll restoration is explained, giving kids a chance to give new life to old, worn-out dolls.

Doll making is not a craft I’m familiar with, and I would have liked to see photos of these projects, rather than just drawings, so I would have a better picture of how they should turn out. Kids who love dolls and crafts will enjoy Doll Crafts.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

February 15, 2018 Posted by | children, crafts | Leave a comment



A few weeks ago I received a wonderful surprise in the mail. A box containing two gift-wrapped children’s picture books arrived, waiting to be read and enjoyed. Upon opening these presents, I discovered “Rock-A-Bye Room” by Susan Meyers (Abrams Books $16.95) and “Land Shark” by Beth Ferry (Chronicle Books $16.99). Both books are delightful reads.

Bookroo offers this monthly children’s book subscription for $17.99 + $5 s/h for one month, with other multiple-month subscriptions offers available. The value of the books received through this service will always exceed the subscription price. Bookroo’s goal is to find hidden gems that you don’t already own and aren’t likely to be found in stores or online. Their books are extensively reviewed by a panel of 12 families attending Stanford University and their combined 22 kids.

I was very impressed with the Bookroo books and their philosophy of selecting great reading material for kids, based on what kids (and their parents) would enjoy reading over and over again. I highly recommend this valuable service.

January 9, 2018 Posted by | children | Leave a comment

Danza! Amalia Hernández and Mexico’s Folkloric Ballet

Author: Duncan Tonatiuh
Genre: Children, Mexico, Dance
ISBN: 978-1-4197-2532-6
Pages: 32
Price: $18.95

Author’s website
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Everyone expected Amalia Hernández to grow up to be a teacher, just like her mother and grandmother. But when Ami saw folk dancers put on a show in a town square, she was hooked. She decided on the spot that she would be a dancer, too.

Soon Ami was enrolled in ballet classes, on her way to becoming a talented dancer. But ballet wasn’t enough. Ami wanted to add elements of the folk dances she loved so much into her ballet routines. After spending time traveling around the country, learning as much as she could from the local dancers, she developed performances to showcase them. The people loved them, and her dance troupe grew. Soon El Ballet Folklórico de México was traveling around the world.

Amalia Hernández was a pioneer in creating performances inspired by the folk dances of Mexico. Although she originally envisioned spending her time in the classroom, she devoted her life to teaching her students the beautiful dances she developed. Danza! is a wonderful story about this interesting and accomplished choreographer.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

December 12, 2017 Posted by | children, dance, Mexico | Leave a comment

The Runaway Dandelion

Author: Jill Regensburg
Illustrator: Leticia Plate
Publisher: EarthWardProject
Genre: Children / Nature
ISBN: 978-0998459608
Pages: 48
Price: $10.99

Buy it at Amazon

One day, some large equipment arrives in a beautiful meadow and rips out all the trees and plants, before a huge house is built and a lawn planted. After the owners finish spraying for weeds, one lone dandelion survives, but she’s lonely. All her friends are gone. So when her yellow flower petals turn to a fluff of seeds, she floats away to another meadow that looks inviting.

Now she lives with people who care about the environment, and she’s much happier. They grow their own vegetables, use solar and wind power to heat their home, and play outdoors rather than watch too much TV. And best of all, they think dandelions are a tasty addition to their fresh salads. They don’t want to kill her – they really appreciate her.

Sustainable living is not an idea many city dwellers give much thought to, but even if one lives in the suburbs, it’s possible to be more mindful of the environment. Kids will learn about this concept as they follow the little dandelion to her new and nicer home. A glossary of terms is also included. I highly recommend The Runaway Dandelion.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

December 3, 2017 Posted by | children, nature | Leave a comment


Author & Illustrator: Satu Kontinen
Publisher: POW!
Genre: Children
ISBN: 978-1-57687-805-7
Pages: 24
Price: $14.95

Buy it at Amazon

Mokomaki are tiny birds who love to look for lost animals. A little fox has gone missing, so they search the forest to find her. Along the way they discover several more missing babies that they need to locate.

As the story unfolds, the Mokomaki listen carefully to the descriptions of the missing animals and try to identify them in the pages that follow. Sometimes they’re given clues to its appearance, and they need to study a group to see which one it is. As they look around, they discuss the situation with each other, offering assistance, giving new challenges, and providing some chuckles.

Mokomaki! contains cute computer graphic images and a fun concept for kids. Parents and children will enjoy searching for the missing baby animals.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

November 30, 2017 Posted by | children | Leave a comment

The Historical Heroines Coloring Book

Author: Elizabeth Lorayne
Illustrator: Kendra Shedenhelm
Publisher: White Wave Press
Genre: Women’s History / Coloring Book
ISBN: 978-0-9979098-9-0
Pages: 80
Price: $14.93

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

In the 18th and 19th centuries, women made significant contributions to the math and sciences community. But they lived in a society where their roles were limited by their gender, and their achievements were often discounted or credited to the men they worked with.

The Historical Heroines Coloring Book introduces kids to some of these pioneering women through one-page summaries of their lives and accomplishments. An accompanying coloring page shows each woman in action in her field of science.

In the introduction, author Elizabeth Lorayne proclaims, “My hope is that through coloring these illustrations of strong, brilliant, hard-working women scientists, you will feel inspired to go forth and seize your own dreams and that you will in turn continue the circle of empowering yourself and others.” After reading this interesting and inspiring book, I believe she has achieved her goal.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

November 29, 2017 Posted by | art, children, history | Leave a comment

A Pocketful of Rainbows

Author: Joanne Lécuyer
Illustrator: Ana Santos
Publisher: Topsy Books
Genre: Children
ISBN: 978-1-927353-73-8
Pages: 32
Price: $14.99

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

Mattie enjoys watching the sky for rainbows, but she’s sad they only appear when it rains. One day she has an idea. What if she drew rainbows to give away so people didn’t have to wait for them?

After a day spent giving away all the rainbows in her pocket, Mattie comes home. She’s feeling a little glum that she doesn’t have any left to lift her own spirits. But Dad shows her a wonderful surprise Mother Nature has in store for her.

Mattie is a special girl who wants to brighten the lives of those around her. A Pocketful of Rainbows is a delightful read that will lift everyone’s spirits.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

Bergers Book Reviews spent some time chatting with Joanne Lécuyer. Please be sure to read what she has to say!

November 27, 2017 Posted by | children | Leave a comment