Zen Ghosts

ZG cover

Written & Illustrated by: Jon J Muth

Published in 2010

Genre: Picture Book

Grade Level: 1-3

Summary: Zen Ghosts is a creative retelling of an old Chinese koan, which according to the author is a question that you have to answer for yourself. In this book, three children visit their friend Stillwater (a panda) after trick-or-treating to hear a ghost story. Stillwater is there, along with another panda who looks just like him and who tells them the story of Senjo. In the story, the main character’s soul is separated to live two lives, and is eventually rejoined into one person. At the end of the story, one of the pandas is gone, and the reader is left to decide what happened.

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A Wizard from the Start

AWftS cover

Written & Illustrated by: Don Brown

Published in 2010

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography

Grade Level: 2-4

Summary: A Wizard from the Start tells the story of Thomas Edison, the famous inventor who boasted 1,093 patents throughout his lifetime. This book covers Edison’s story, from childhood to his adult years, highlighting the education he received and some of his well-known inventions.

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Critter Sitter

CS cover

Written & Illustrated by: Chuck Richards

Published in 2008

Genre: Picture Book

Grade Level: K-3

Summary: Henry takes on the job of Critter Sitter for the Mahoney family when they go to collect their kids from camp. He is left in charge of a dog, a cat, a bird, a snake, a frog, and a goldfish. The first day goes well, but overnight the animals get out and cause havoc. Henry spends all of the next day chasing them down and cleaning the house.

Cover/Illustrations: I love the illustrations in this book! The colors are bright and attention catching. In my opinion the best parts of this book are in the details. The characters (both humans and animals) are really detailed and interesting to look at. All of the different locations shown in the book are full of great details, from the hangers in the laundry room to the newspaper in the bird cage. The details are really what make the illustrations in this book great.

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