Book review: Mr. Putter & Tabby Hit the Slope, by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Arthur Howard

Rylant, Cynthia. Mr. Putter & Tabby Hit the Slope. Illustrated by Arthur Howard. (Mr. Putter and Tabby series, #25) Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016. Unpaged. $14.99. ISBN 9780152064273. Ages 5-7. P7Q8

On a slow, snowy day, Mr. Putter remembers the long ago fun of sledding down hills. The adventurous neighbor, Mrs. Teaberry, has sleds in her garage. Mr. Putter, Tabby, Mrs. Teaberry and her dog, Zeke, head out for an adventure, riding sleds down hills in this twenty-fifth book in the series.  Much of the charm of the long-running series comes from the simple watercolor and goache paintings that show the varied emotions of the characters—Mr. Putter’s sadness in being left without a sled, Tabby’s worried terror  as Zeke pilots the two of them down the hill, the contentment on both Mr. Putter’s and Tabby’s faces as they have muffins afterward.

Verdict: Highly recommended for preschool, elementary, and public libraries.

January 2017 review by Jane Cothron.

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Book review: We Love You, Rosie!, by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Linda Davick

Rylant, Cynthia. Illustrated by Linda Davick We Love You, Rosie! Beach Lane Books, 2016. $17.99. ISBN 9781442465114. Unp. Ages 2-6. P8 Q8

Rosie, a family’s pet dog, helps us understand opposites in We Love You, Rosie! Sometimes Rosie is good, sometimes she is bad. She comes in the house, then goes out. Her toy is lost, then found. Each pair of opposites is colorfully represented through Rosie’s interaction with the children in her family. Cynthia Rylant uses repetition and capitalization to make important vocabulary words stand out. Bold illustrations and bright colors will appeal to young readers. The choice to depict an underrepresented minority family enjoying a pet, makes this book exceedingly approachable to a variety of young readers.

Verdict: The story is relatable and repetitious enough to aid new readers.

April 2017 review by Lillian Curanzy.

Book review: The Sea Lion, by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Preston McDaniels

Rylant, Cynthia. The Sea Lion. [Lighthouse Family series]. Illus. by Preston McDaniels. Beach Lane Books/Simon & Schuster, 2017. 44p. ISBN 978-1-4814-6025-5. Ages 6-9. P9Q9

The seventh slim tale about the family of creatures in the series centers around the discovery of a baby sea lion asleep in the kitchen who explains that his mother had left him there to await her return. The cat Pandora and the dog Seabold are quite pleased to care for the little one, and mouse children Lila, Whistler, and Lila are thrilled with their new friend. Readers might want to start with the first in the series, The Storm, that brings together the five main characters.

Verdict: The gentle text of this chapter book from a Newbery Medalist and Oregon author combines with lovely graphite  illustrations, many of them full page, for a mildly exciting book showing the beauty of family and life on the edge of the continent.

April 2017 review by Nel Ward.