Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Review: Maybelle, Bunny of the North


Author/Illustrator:  Keith Patterson
Review Copy Provided by:  Nancy at Bees Knees Books

About the Author: This is Keith Patterson's first book.  He was once a cartoonist for his school newspaper  Keith spent 2 years driving a cab in Homer, Alaska, after graduating with a BA in Fine Arts from SUNY, Albany.  While driving, he met many interesting characters which he sketched to the delight of his young daughter.  Keith lives in Asheville, North Carolina.

About the Book:  Maybelle, Bunny of the North is our lively little tour guide to the seasons in Homer, Alaska.  We journey through changing weather and explore seasonal play with a precious parent-child duo who have an obvious love of the outdoors.  Maybelle enjoys a peaceful moon-gazing session on a snowy winter night and  frolicking in the vast fields of summer’s abundant fireweed to look for moose.  Ever the sociable adventurer, Maybelle offers a friendly Hiya to all her friends along the way.  Her adventures wind down as she eases into sleep with the help of a goodnight song and a book  

My Review:  I was very honored when Nancy emailed me about this book; I couldn't wait to get it!  I love seeing an author's first work, to be able to share it with others, and promote their work.  I think it's the promoting part that I love the most.  Keith Patterson is definitely worth promoting!  This book was released into stores on April 1.

Having been an early childhood/elementary teacher for 12 years, I am always looking for new children's books to teach old concepts.  Maybelle is a great book to help teach children about the seasons.  Set in Alaska, this story takes Maybelle through all four seasons, which we don't see in all areas of the United States.  I love that I can do that with this book; let children experience the seasons vicariously through Maybelle's eyes, which is like having a child's perspective.

Patterson's illustrations are done with watercolor and ink.  They are simplistic, which I think children enjoy.  They can relate to the illustrations because simple is how they think.  Sometimes illustrators make the scenes too busy for little eyes.  Children miss the story for the illustrations.  It takes both equally to make a good children's book.  Children also like animal characters, so I'm glad Patterson chose an animal instead of a little girl or boy for this story.  Every character in the book is an animal, and some are ones not normally seen very often in books, magpie and moose.

Maybelle is such a lovable little character.  She is just a typical kid telling the reader how she sees things.

A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to Room to Read, a non-profit dedicated to education children around the globe.


Nancy Arruda said...

The illustration of Maybelle climbing on the rocks is actually a sneak peek at an illustrated poem Keith Patterson is developing. We're anticipating more wonderful stories for young children from him!

Bingo said...

How adorable is this book?! I guess it is the elementary teacher in me that loves this kind of book! Nice review and story! Thanks for sharing!

Beth F said...

Awww, this looks so cute. I'll definitely keep it in mind next time I am buying for a youngster.

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