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A Tuba Christmas

Helen L. Wilbur (author) Mary Reaves Uhles (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534126398

With a family that loves music as much as hers does, it was only a matter of time before it was Ava's turn to pick out an instrument. Her mother plays the piano, her father plays the violin, and one brother plays the cello while the other plays the clarinet. As soon as Ava selects an instrument, she will be able to join them as they practice for the annual holiday concert. And her family has definite ideas on what instrument Ava should select, from the piano to the flute to the violin. But Ava isn't interested in any of them. Ava wants to play the tuba. And she gets her wish. But playing the tuba isn't as easy as it seems. And there is no place for a tuba in the annual concert. But with the encouragement of her music teacher, Ava finds a place for her and her tuba in a special holiday celebration.

Can U Save the Day?

Shannon Stocker (author) Tom Disbury (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534146280

B is an awfully boastful bloke and when he and the rest of the alphabet get together, he can't help but tease the vowels about their small numbers. So the vowels begin to take off, one by one. The consonants--and the rest of the farm--see just how important vowels really are. With disaster looming and B seeing the error of his ways, can U save the day and set the alphabet right again?

Common Threads: Adam's Day at the Market

Huda Essa (author) Mercè Tous (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534146297

Adam and his family spend an exciting day at the colorful and bustling Eastern Market. But when Adam gets briefly separated from Mom and Dad, he mistakes a friendly, diverse cast of characters for his parents in their traditional Muslim clothing--and shows that we all have more in common than you might think. This nearly-wordless picture book celebrates diversity and community in vibrant, dynamic art.

A is for Abraham: A Jewish Family Alphabet

Richard Michelson (author), Ron Mazellan (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627536356

From Abraham to Zaydee, and from ancient times to modern day, A is for Abraham: A Jewish Family Alphabet encompasses the history of Jewish traditions and customs and how they are practiced today. Following the alphabet, a poem identifies the letter topic while sidebar text provides background information. C could be the challah that my bubbe used to braid, or C could be the chicken soup, when I was sick she made, or chocolate coins on Chanukah we added to our coffers. But I say C should be for Chai "To Life" and all it offers. This joyful celebration of family and heritage includes the meaning behind celebrations such as the Festival of Lights, Passover, and Sukkot; important names and stories from the Old Testament; and how modern-day families continue to celebrate their heritage.

Four Seasons of Fun: Egg Hunts! Fireworks! Pumpkins! Reindeer!

Pamela Duncan Edwards (author) Sylvie Daigneault (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534126435

Set against the backdrop of a magnificent apple tree, this book uses poetry to cycle through the changes of the four seasons. Beginning with springtime, rhyming couplets take young readers through seasonal activities such as kite flying in the spring, summertime picnicking, fall trick-or-treating, all the way to building snowmen in the winter, before cycling back to spring again. One verse in each season references a major holiday, including Easter and Christmas.

Lulu & Rocky in Milwaukee

Barbara Joosse (author) Renée Graef (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534123540

Lulu and her cousin Rocky are visiting the city of Milwaukee. There are so many fun things to see and do, like canoeing, visiting a lighthouse, riding surrey-bikes, going to a fish fry, and even gearing up and burning rubber at the Harley-Davidson Museum!

Nature's Friend: The Gwen Frostic Story

Lindsey McDivitt (author) Eileen Ryan Ewen (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534126459

The art and writing of Gwen Frostic are well known in her home state of Michigan and around the world, but this picture book biography tells the story behind Gwen's famous work. After a debilitating illness as a child, Gwen sought solace in art and nature. She learned to be persistent and independent--never taking no for an answer or letting her disabilities define her. After creating artwork for famous Detroiters and for display at the World's Fair and helping to build WWII bombers, Gwen moved her printmaking business to northern Michigan. She dedicated her work and her life to reminding people of the wonder and beauty in nature.

Junk: A Spectacular Tale of Trash

Nicholas Day (author) Tom Disbury (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534126466

2019 Green Earth Book Awards - Short List Sylvia Samantha White is very good at finding--she just doesn't know exactly what all her "junk" is good for, not yet at least. But when completely ridiculous disaster strikes, she springs into action and uses her junk to create solutions to the town's troubles. A charming ode to collecting, creating, and following your bliss--even when you're not entirely sure where it will lead you.

Mother Ghost: Nursery Rhymes for Little Monsters

Rachel Kolar (author) Roland Garrigue (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534126480

From "Mary, Mary, Tall and Scary" to "Wee Willie Werewolf," this collection of classic nursery rhymes turned on their heads will give readers the chills--and a serious case of belly laughs. With clever rhyme and spooky illustrations, Mother Ghost is perfect for getting in the Halloween spirit. Boo!

With Love, Grandma

Helen Foster James (author) Petra Brown (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781534103160

Every grandma knows that her love for her grandchildren can span great distances! So when Grandma heads out on an adventure of her own, she stays in touch with her grandchild through a series of sweet letters and memories. Grandchild follows Grandma through her notes until Grandma finally returns home--and opens up Camp Grandma for a visit full of fun, grandma snuggles, and games. This tender story from the author and illustrator team behind Grandma Loves You! proves that a grandma's love knows no bounds.

My Teacher Likes to Say

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

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627531382

From the same team that brought you My Momma Likes to Say comes this delightful interpretation of maxims, idioms, proverbs, and clichs many students remember hearing on a regular basis in the classroom. From "Do you have ants in your pants?" to "Stick together!" and "Great minds think alike," readers will be intrigued by the history of these adages, told in poetry form as well as expository text, and amused by the witty illustrations, depicting these sayings as a child might imagine them.

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!

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.

T is for Time

Marie Smith, Roland Smith (authors), Rene Graef (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781633621299

T is for a Time Alphabet uses poetry and expository text to explore the concept of time, from explaining basic units of measurement to showcasing important scientific achievements. Topics include famous inventors (Albert Einstein and John Harrison) and important structures and landmarks (Kulkulkan Pyramid and Big Ben). Budding scientists will discover what world-famous stone structure is believed to be an early calendar, follow the voyages of explorer Ferdinand Magellan to better understand the International Date Line, and learn to tell time using the Zulu time system.

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 Legend of the Beaver's Tail

Stephanie Shaw (author), Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781633621350

Long ago Beaver did not look like he does now. Yes, he had two very large front teeth, but his tail was not wide and flat. It was thick with silky fur. Vain Beaver is inordinately proud of his glorious tail. When he's not bragging about his tail, Beaver spends his time grooming it, while the other woodland creatures go about their business of finding food and shelter for their families. Eventually Beaver's boasting drives away his friends and he is left on his own. But when his tail is flattened in an accident (of his own making), Beaver learns to value its new shape and seeks to make amends with his friends. Based on an Ojibwe legend.

S is for Sleeping Bear Dunes: A National Lakeshore Alphabet

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

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781633621381

Following the alphabet this book uses poetry and expository text to explore the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, which is located along the northwest coast of the Lower Peninsula of Michigan. Named for its famed dunes, this national part was designated the "Most Beautiful Place in America" in 2011 on ABC's Good Morning America show. Topics include the park's many natural features such as its dune formations, beaches, and forests, as well as its numerous cultural attractions, including an 1871 lighthouse.

The Legend of Michigan

Trinka Hakes Noble (author), Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627535977

Long, long ago, the ancient people of the forest gathered around warm fires and told the tale of a time long past, when the land known as "Michigane" was covered with ice and snow. For thousands of years the cruel North Wind ruled the land North of Up North, chasing away the gentle, benevolent winds from the East, West and South. Winter stayed the whole year round, so nothing could live in Michigane. Not until an old warrior and a young boy traveled through the frigid cold with nothing but warm hearts and an old pair of mittens was there hope that the frozen land would eventually come to life.

The Legend of Mackinac Island

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

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627535960

A beautiful tale of the painted turtle Makinauk, his animal friends, and their discovery of new lands and long-lasting friendship.

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 Papa Noël: A Cajun Christmas Story

Terri Hoover Dunham (author), Laura Knorr (illustrator)

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press ISBN: 9781627535984

Around the world Santa Claus has many names. But in a deep, swampy bayou of Louisiana, he's known as Papa Noël. In such a hot and humid place, there can be no sleds or reindeer, so Papa Noël rides the river in a boat that's pulled by eight alligators, with a snowy white one named Nicollette in the lead. On this particular Christmas Eve, it's so foggy on the river that even Nicollette's magical glowing-green eyes may not be enough to guide Papa Noël. The alligators are tired, grumpy and bruised from banging into cypress trees, and Papa is desperate to get all the gifts to the little children. Well, "quicker than a snake shimmies down the river," the clever Cajun people come up with a solution that saves the day. A colorfully inventive Christmas tale, Papa Noël is a lesson in fast thinking, as well as a witty introduction to a part of America that's rich in folklore and legend.