Originally published in: original 2007, in translation 2017
What it’s about: A graphic memoir chronicling relationships and family dysfunction, love and heartache.
What made me pick it up: I gravitated toward it the moment it showed up on our cart of new books – the bleak cover art was immediately compelling to me.
My favorite things: The art, the art! Written over the course of twelve years, the art varies in style and medium and still somehow fits together to paint a portrait of a life through time. Complexities and heartaches of real life, honest about flaws, weaknesses, and mistakes. I love the use of handwriting rather than a font for an even more expressive read.
Who it’s great for: Readers looking for an emotionally engaging exploration of family and relationships.
Pick up a copy of this book at Amazon (affiliate link) or in your local library.
Originally published in: 2014
What it’s about: A young mouse who is scared of a storm listens to her grandfather read a book about a brave rhino who overcomes a challenging situation.
What made me pick it up: LeVar Burton! Literacy hero and host of one of my favorite shows from childhood Reading Rainbow. Also, Jordy. Once I found out he had written a book, I checked it out immediately.
My favorite things: This book is really well done and perfect for complex situations and emotions kids may experience. It is a story within a story, so it’s a bit meta, but the mouse reading about the rhino learning how to handle an overwhelming situation with support and understanding from his community is well done. There are a lot of one liners that would make great mantras for little ones. I also really enjoyed the illustrations.
Who it’s great for: Kids learning about or struggling with big emotions. Young ones going through tough times that are hard for them to understand. Families to read together. Burton fans of any age.
Find this book at Amazon (affiliate link) or your local library.