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Kindergarrrten Bus

Mike Ornstein (author) Kevin M. Barry (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534126374

Included in Kirkus Reviews' "9 Great Back to School Book List" Yo ho ho! It's the first day of kindergarten. Just imagine all the fun things to learn and experience! And who better than a pirate captain to drive the bus to school? He's ready to share all the rules one needs to know to ride the bus and to get along with mates at school. But with the anticipation of the first day of school there also comes a bit of anxiety. And it turns out that being a big, blustery pirate captain is no guarantee against feeling insecure and a little frightened in strange and uncomfortable situations. Who can help a rough and tough pirate captain get over his fears and back to driving the school bus? Using humor and pirate-speak, Kindergarrrten Bus addresses some of the concerns and anxiety that many children feel on their first day of school or at the start of any new undertaking.

Bully

Jennifer Sattler (author) Jennifer Sattler (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534126381

Bully the bullfrog lives in a pond full of lilies. The flowers are beautiful, fragrant, and enjoyed by the many other creatures that also inhabit the pond. The pond is a very pleasant place to live. Or it should be. Instead, Bully decides that only he should be able to enjoy the beautiful lilies. He demands that the other inhabitants of the pond leave. And once Bully has the flowers to himself, his selfish behavior almost destroys them. Can anyone stop Bully and his bullying ways? As it turns out, the answer is YES!

Good Night, Forest

Denise Brennan-Nelson (author)Marco Bucci (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534123014

Even the forest has to sleep! This sweet walk through the forest says good night to flora and fauna alike, from the quiet bunny to the howling coyote. With silly, colorful illustrations and soft rhyme that is sure to lull littles ones off to sleep, this will be a favorite bedtime pick.

A Isn't for Fox: An Isn't Alphabet

Wendy Ulmer (author), Laura Knorr (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627535830

Experts know that sometimes the best way to teach a child what something is is to teach him what it isn't. Running through the alphabet, beginning readers are given a letter and then told what the letter topic isn't. A isn't for box; it isn't for fox. A is for ants that crawl over your socks.

The Nutcracker's Night Before Christmas

Keith Brockett (author), Joseph Cowman (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781634704281

In The Nutcracker's Night Before Christmas preparations for a doomed stage production of the classic ballet goes from terribly bad to ridiculously worse. Sick stagehands, renegade cats, and crashing Christmas trees have everyone sure that the show won't go on. But it's Christmas Eve and help is on the way! Told in verse with wonderful whimsical illustrations, this story hits all the right notes for holiday reading.

A Cookie for Santa

Stephanie Shaw (author), Bruno Robert (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627537742

In this clever twist on the Night Before Christmas story, a gingerbread boy cookie is carefully crafted and placed on a plate. He was made special to serve as Santa's nighttime snack, a homemade thank-you for all the presents he will deliver. The cookie wonders if he is brave enough to face up to his holiday duty. But instead of spending the evening contemplating his fate, the gingerbread boy finds himself facing two rambunctious puppies experiencing their very first Christmas. Their mischief includes a tug-of-war with presents, leaving a big mess. And it's up to the gingerbread boy to save the day and Christmas!

Lazy Days of Summer

Judy Young (author), Kathy O'Malley (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627536400

From earliest times, the concept of "play" has been part of the human experience. And while some pastimes have gone in and out of favor over the years, some never change or lack for enthusiasts. Using poetry and prose, Judy Young relives many of the familiar games of childhood and invites young readers to join along as she plays Kick the Can, Monkey in the Middle, and Double Dutch jump rope. "The rope starts to turn and I jump with my feet As I sing out a song with the same rhythmic beat, Turn around, touch the ground, first jump slowly, then fast; How many more jumps do you think I will last?" Colorful artwork reinforces the underlying message of the importance of physical play in today's techno-driven world. In Lazy Days of Summer even "older" children will recall the welcome tang of lemonade after a rugged game of tag.

Boris and Stella and the Perfect Gift

Dara Goldman (author), Dara Goldman (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530477

Boris is a musician, playing the songs he learned growing up in Russia. Stella is a baker, baking cakes and pastries like her father used to back in Italy. Boris and Stella live in the city and are best friends. They like movies, hats, and each other. At holiday time, Stella wants to give Boris the perfect present for Hanukkah. She wants him to know how special he is. Boris wants to give Stella the perfect present for Christmas: she means so much to him. But perfect presents cost money and their bank savings contain very little. To make their dreams of perfect presents come true, Boris and Stella each sacrifice something very special. In a nod to O. Henrys The Gift of the Magi comes this tender story celebrating traditions, friendships, and gifts from the heart.

Memoirs of a Hamster

Devin Scillian (author), Tim Bowers (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627530088

Night 1 / My life is perfect. / I have a bowl full of seeds, a cozy pile of wood shavings, and room to run. / I'm never leaving here. / Question: Who's the luckiest hamster in the world? / Answer: ME! Seymour the hamster has the perfect life. He has a spacious cage, a constant food supply, and a FuzzyBoy 360 exercise wheel that lets him run to his heart's content. Life could not be better. Or could it? When Pearl the cat tells Seymour of the goodies beyond the safe confines of his cage, he starts to think he's missing out. And out is the new in! It's only after Seymour is out of his cage that he begins to fully appreciate his safe and cozy home.

S is for Star: A Christmas Alphabet

Cynthia Furlong Reynolds (author), Pam Carroll (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627535946

The Christmas story and the origin of many holiday traditions are thoroughly detailed in the text of S is for Star: A Christmas Alphabet. The first Christmas cards were printed and sold in the United States by a German immigrant in 1874. Long ago, eating pie was believed to bring good luck, and during the holidays they were baked in an oblong shape to look like a manger. The message of Christmas is a message to all the world and is beautifully conveyed and illustrated in S is for Star. Our tradition of gift-giving is based on the Wise Men's visit to Baby Jesus. Nearly every country has its own gift-giving traditions. In Great Britain, children eagerly await Father Christmas. In France, he is called Pere Nol. In Italy, Befana brings presents, and German and Austrian children wait for a visit from the Christkindl. Celebrate these and many other traditions of the holiday season with S is for Star: A Christmas Alphabet.

The Flying Hand of Marco B.

Richard Leiter (author), Shahar Kober (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781633621336

A routine ride in the backseat of his parents' car takes a fantastical turn when a young boy opens the car door window. With the click of the seat belt and door locks, Marco B. is securely tucked into the backseat of his parents' car, heading out on a family errand. With the car window opened to the fresh air, this could be the start of any routine trip. But not if you're Marco B. and most certainly not if you're Marco B.'s hand! As the car travels along and the scenery rushes by, Marco B. puts his hand out the window and fantasizes about flying. And once his hand has felt the wind rushing around it, it has no intention of staying in the car. Marco B. soon finds himself on a wild ride up in the sky. Told in rhyming text.

Buster the Little Garbage Truck

Marcia Berneger (author), Kevin Zimmer (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781633621343

Buster is a sweet little garbage truck. He can't wait to grow up to be a big truck, just like his father. Buster practices driving and lifting and beeping with his friend, Kitty. There's one small problem. Loud noises frighten Buster. When his father takes him to the truck yard to meet the other vehicles, their air-horn blasts and roaring engines send Buster skidding away to hide. He wants to be big and brave, but how can he work with Daddy and his friends when their loud sounds scare him? Buster feels terrible. When Kitty gets into trouble, little Buster musters up his courage to save her.

Tallulah

Denise Brennan-Nelson (author), Susan Kathleen Hartung (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781633621329

Tallulah doesn't look like the other young mermaids living in the ocean. Her tail is a dull gray. And when all the other mermaids go on a quest to find the special gemstones that make their tails sparkle with color, Tallulah doesn't find her gemstone at all. When Turtle suggests that Tallulah searches the Great Lakes she is eager to give it a try, even though the other sea creatures believe mermaids don't belong in lakes. Tallulah explores the Great Lakes from north to south and east to west, until she finds a beautiful Petoskey stone and she realizes that she is finally exactly where she belongs.

Bear and Bird

James Skofield (author), Jennifer Thermes (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627537308

One spring evening an old bear finds a young bird, still learning to fly, has fallen to the ground. When the bear lifts the bird to safety, a friendship begins. Bear and Bird soon become constant companions, spending their days together, searching out berries and watching out for one another. They are only separated during the winter months when Bear hibernates and Bird flies south. As the years pass, their friendship grows stronger. Then one spring day, when Bird returns from his winter trip, Bear is not there to greet him. Days and then weeks pass and still no Bear. When Bird finally learns why his dear friend is absent, memories of their time together bring comfort and acceptance. In this tale of an unlikely but loving friendship, the cycle of life, including its joys and its sorrows, is gently explored.

The Legend of Sleeping Bear

Kathy-jo Wargin (author), Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531795

It started with a mother's love... Fleeing from a forest fire, a mother bear urges her two cubs into the watery shelter of a vast body of water. Though it will be difficult, she knows if they can swim across to the opposite shore, they will be safe. With calls of encouragement and steadfast love, Mother Bear guides her cubs across the great lake, Lake Michigan. And the story of what happens once Mother Bear reaches the far shore becomes the legend behind the natural wonder known as Sleeping Bear Dune.

The Legend of the Loon

Kathy-jo Wargin (author), Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531818

The fantastic Legend team of Kathy-jo Wargin and Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen have another beautiful book to add to the Sleeping Bear and Mackinac Island stories. A Grandmother's love for her grandchildren is magically portrayed in "The Legend of the Loon". A perfect addition to your collection, this book remains true to the heartwarming qualities you've come to expect from these legendary storytellers.

Z is for Zamboni: A Hockey Alphabet

Matt Napier (author), Melanie Rose (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531948

In the mold of our very popular series of state alphabet books, we offer "Z is for Zamboni" to hockey fans young and old across North America. Matt Napier's "breakaway" rhymes and "hard-checking" expository text team up with the "top-shelf" illustrations of Melanie Rose to elucidate this increasingly popular game for every beginning hockey aficionado. Highlighting rules, players, coaches, teams, and the history of the game, it is both fun and educational.

T is for Touchdown: A Football Alphabet

Brad Herzog (author), Mark Braught (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531993

The sounds of autumn include the crunch of fallen leaves underfoot and the thump of the kickoff starting the first home football game. Sleeping Bear Press is proud to continue our bestselling sports series with T is for Touchdown: A Football Alphabet.

K is for Kick: A Soccer Alphabet

Brad Herzog (author), Melanie Rose (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627532006

Author Brad Herzog brings his well-received prose and soccer knowledge together with Melanie Rose's charming and realistic illustrations to detail every facet of the game. Each letter has a simple rhyme for young readers: "J is for the Jerseys that soccer players wear. But often in the World Cup, opponents tend to share. In a gesture of respect after a game ends, They simply swap their jerseys as if they are old friends." For older readers the expository text gives specific details about goal tending, referees, the World Cup, and many other aspects.

R is for Rhyme: A Poetry Alphabet

Judy Young (author), Victor Juhasz (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627532051

Bring the magic of poetry to life with R is for Rhyme: A Poetry Alphabet. From acrostics and ballads to meter and metaphor, author and poet Judy Young has written a delightful collection of poems to illustrate poetic tools, terms and techniques. Each term or technique is demonstrated in an accompanying poem so readers can see the method at work. Whether haiku or rap, sonnets or cinquain, budding writers of all ages will be inspired to put their imaginations to work crafting their own poems.

A is for America: An American Alphabet

Devin Scillian (author), Pam Carroll (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627535823

From the British and our Constitution that replaced their rule, to Yellowstone Park and Zane Grey's stories of the west, "A is for America" is a sweeping tribute to all we know and love about our country. With delightful poems that beg to be read aloud, and expository text to broaden a student's horizons, this American alphabet will make you fall in love with the United States over and over again.

Z is for Zeus: A Greek Mythology Alphabet

Helen L. Wilbur (author), Victor Juhasz (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531634

Whose face launched a thousand ships? Who dropped an apple to win a race? What creature has the head of a woman, the body of a lion, the wings of an eagle, and always wakes up on the wrong side of the bed? The Oracle knows and so will young readers after they encounter the strange creatures, exotic gods, and exciting stories in Z is for Zeus: A Greek Mythology Alphabet. Human endeavors are often at odds with the whims and the will and the ways of the gods. Although they're up in Olympus without any cares, they just can't stop meddling in human affairs

Willow

Rosemarie Brennan, Denise Brennan Nelson (author), Cyd Moore (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531641

Miss Hawthorn's room is neat and tidy, not a pencil or paintbrush is out of place. And that's how she likes it. And she likes trees that are colored green and apples that are painted red. Miss Hawthorn does not like things to be different or out of the ordinary. Into Miss Hawthorn's classroom comes young Willow. She doesn't color inside the lines, she breaks crayons, and she sees pink trees and blue apples. What will Miss Hawthorn think? Magical things can happen when your imagination is allowed to run wild, and for Miss Hawthorn the notion of what is art and what is possible is forever changed.

My Grandma Likes to Say

Denise Brennan-Nelson (author), Jane Monroe Donovan (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531542

Following in the footsteps of My Momma Likes to Say comes the charming My Grandma Likes to Say. Thousands of proverbs and idioms can be found in the English language. Derived from many different sources, these expressions are a wonderful link to history and culture, and can be an instructive tool in language education. "That's a horse of a different color My grandma likes to say. I'm not sure what she means But I like it anyway. Polka dots and stripes. Yellow, orange, and blue. What color would a horse be If it were up to YOU?" Original paintings conceived from a child's point of view provide a hilarious visual interpretation of those sayings oft-quoted by the 'senior' members of our families.

My Momma Likes to Say

Denise Brennan-Nelson (author), Jane Monroe Donovan (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531283

From the author of Buzzy the Bumblebee comes a child's hilarious visual interpretation of such parental idioms and witticisms as "Hold your horses;" "Money doesn't grow on trees;" and "I have eyes in the back of my head." "Cat got your toungue?" My momma likes to say. I'm not sure what she means but I like it anyway. My cat has never tried to take my tongue away. But if he did, he'd find that it can stretch a long, long way.