Category Archives: Articles

March Programming Wrap-up

It’s been a fantastic month of programming this March, with three multi-week programs for children. On Monday, we finished our toddler music series, Jump and Dance with Jaime Currier, this Tuesday and Wednesday we’ll finish our wildly popular 1st and 2nd grade series Picture Books and More, and on Thursday, our newest after school series, Stories and Science for Kindergartners, winds down.

Jump and Dance with Jaime Currier (Monday mornings)
photo(3)Twenty children ages 18 months to five years gathered on Monday mornings to go on a musical journey with Jaime Currier. With her ukulele as her companion, Jaime weaved musical adventures each week. She’s a big believer in getting kids moving to the rhythm of the music. Scarves were also a big hit with all the kids. In the last class, she asked for requests and it was no surprise when the toddler-set yelled “Let it Snow!” Jaime knew all three verses and belted them out with all the kids singing right along with her. Bravo! We’re hoping to have Jaime back for a summer concert for our Little Sprouts series.

Serpents, Sirens and Silly Sea Creatures (Tuesdays and Wednesdays after school)
696Serpents, Sirens and Silly Sea Creatures brought twenty-five enthusiastic first and second graders together to hear stories, make crafts, and enjoy a snack based on the theme. Kids listened to sea-themed stories including Pirate vs. Pirate and Cyrus the Unsinkable Sea Serpent and then made a craft to go along with the stories. They turned paper bags into sea otters and pirates, paper plates into sea turtles and goldfish, and foam poster board into sea-life collages. Snacks are also a highlight for this program, which are always creatively tied to the theme. We’ll be offering this program again in October with a new theme and activities.

Stories and Science for Kindergartners (Thursdays after school)
DSCN3071Twenty-five kindergarten scientists joined us each Thursday afternoon to learn about the weather, gravity, water, and light. After listening to stories about the science topic of the day and enjoying a healthy snack, the kindergartners divided into two groups to observe, question, and try hands-on activities that helped them learn more about these topics. We used shaving cream, water, and food coloring to simulate a rain cloud and rain. Water, a little vinegar, dish soap, and glitter in a two-liter bottle and vigorous circular motion helped show how tornadoes occur. Kindergartners love to learn through hands-on activities. Kindergartners are curious, ask wonderful questions, and are always ready for the next activity. We’re looking forward to a Hands-on Science Drop-in Program in August, and we’ll do Stories and Science again in October.

-Jessica

A Dash of Starlight: New Books for Older Readers

Stella by Starlight, by Sharon Draper
stella-by-starlight-9781442494978_hrWhen Stella and her brother see a cross burning on a nearby hillside, their world is turned upside down. Everyone is afraid, but friendship and community can overcome a lot. Draper, the author of Out of My Mind, has written an accessible tale of life in segregated North Carolina, and the fight for equality.  Stella dreams of becoming a writer, even though it’s not easy, and this parallels her father’s quest to register to vote. Persistence is a virtue, even in the face of unfairness and bigotry. (ages 9-13)

Dash, by Kirby Larson
dashWinner of the 2014 Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction, Dash tells the story of Mitsi, a Japanese American girl whose family is sent to a Japanese Internment Camp. In addition to losing her friends and her home, she is unable to bring her beloved dog with her and must leave him behind with a neighbor. When letters from Dash, written of course by the neighbor, reach Mitsi, they give her strength to confront her family’s troubles in the camp. This is a very sweet story for dog lovers as well as a gentle introduction to a terrible chapter in American history. (ages 8-12)

The Terror of the Southlands by Caroline Carlson
TerroroftheSouthlands_hiresIn this second book in The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates series, Captain Blacktooth insists that young captain Hillary Westfield chase down a pirate king or a sea monster to demonstrate her piratical worth. Instead, Hillary and her companions, including a talking gargoyle, decide to save her former headmistress, the Enchantress of the North. This exciting and funny magical tale shakes up the conventions of lowly pirates and haughty socialites. Incompetent detectives, true blue friends, and bloodless swashbuckling make this a ton of fun. Fans of the first book in the series, Magic Marks the Spot, will enjoy this newest adventure, and new readers will catch right up by reading the funny diary entries dictated by the gargoyle. (ages 7-12)

Timmy Failure: We Meet Again by Stephan Pastis
TimmyFailure3The World’s Greatest Detective and his polar bear sidekick are at it again, but this time they face their greatest challenges yet: partnering with his nemesis, Molly Moskins, for a science project and surviving an overnight field trip. With a bit more heart than in his previous adventures, Timmy confronts some common fears (sleeping away from home, dealing with his mom’s new boyfriend) in his own unconventional and hilarious ways. Fans of Diary of a Wimpy Kid will enjoy this writing style, which includes drawings throughout. (ages 8-14)

-Lauren

Bears, Bunnies and Babies: New Books for Younger Readers

The Bear Ate Your Sandwich by Julia Sarcone-Roach

bear ate sandwichHave you ever lost a sandwich? This is the TRUE story of what happened to it! After a feast of berries a bear fell asleep in the back of a pick-up truck. When he awoke in a curious forest (actually a city) he set out to explore the many sights that are similar but very different from his home. Telephone poles seemed nice for scratching his itchy back, wet cement felt just like mud, and there were lovely treats left unattended. What is a bear to do when he finds a sandwich all alone? But before he could finish that last piece of lettuce some dogs scared him off, so that is what happened to your sandwich! Beautiful illustrations, an adorably expressive bear, and comical situations will keep readers so absorbed that they will not realize this is really a tall tale until the very end.

Betty Bunny Loves Easter by Michael Kaplan, illustrated by Stéphane Jorisch

bettybunnyOur favorite handful is back!  In this fourth Betty Bunny story, Betty discovers the value of hard work while at an Easter egg hunt. Every year Betty Bunny has found more eggs than all of her siblings, but this year she discovers that her siblings have secretly been helping her! After a brief meltdown and subsequent pep talk from her mother and father she is determined to find eggs on her own.  While this is difficult, it ends up being well worth the effort. This Easter tale makes another worthy edition to the Betty Bunny series, but the best part of this book is its comical watercolor illustrations. Children will delight in Betty Bunny’s naughty behavior and relate to the humorous sibling interactions.  Like the other books in this series, it provides teachable moments and by now the sassy ending should be expected.

The New Small Person by Lauren Child

newsmallpersonElmore Green loves his life. He loves to line up all of his precious things on the floor, he loves to watch his favorite cartoons, and he loves having his parent’s full attention. When a new small person arrives, Elmore’s life is turned upside down. His parents seem to like the new small person better than him. To make matters worse “it” touches his things and copies him! Elmore wants his old life back until one night when “it” proves his value and Elmore is able to realize how much fun having a sibling can be. Lauren Child does it again in this fresh take on sibling relationships. Elmore’s reaction to a new baby will be relatable to many older siblings and his eventual acceptance and love for his brother should be reassuring to parents. Child’s humor and charm make this story stand out from other new baby stories and the vibrant, playful illustrations are spot on. I love that Lauren Child has finally featured characters with something other than blonde hair and blue eyes.

Puss & Boots by Ayano Imai

pussbootsIn this retelling of Puss & Boots, Puss heads out into the world to drum up new business for his old shoemaker friend. Puss comes across a castle in the woods and convinces the monster inside that he must have a new pair of boots. When the monster refuses to pay, Puss tricks him into taking the shape of a mouse and gobbles him up. While this story only loosely resembles the classic tale in that a clever cat helps his master while wearing very stylish boots, it reads as a completely fresh story. For a fairy tale it is particularly accessible for younger children with a shorter length and less grisly details. The beautiful and simple illustrations are able to be at once contemporary and old fashioned. They feature muted colors, except for the bright red accents, and a wide-eyed, human-like cat.

-Sarah Beth

New: Picture Book Categories!

Introducing a whole new way to browse for picture books! Because library patrons frequently ask us to help find particular types of books, such as princesses, trucks, animals, classics, new baby, and many more, we’ve made them much easier to find. Over the past month, the Children’s Room staff have read and examined each and every one of the more than 5000 picture books in our collection and placed them into one of nine categories. We hope that creating these categories and grouping the picture books together will help you browse them more easily, and discover new ones, too.

Our new picture book categories are:

About Me (dark blue labels)
About MeBooks about behavior, family, feelings, personal health, school, friends, and daily routines. You’ll find books about using the potty and new baby sisters in this area. 

Favorites (pink labels)
Favorite authors like Mac Barnett and Mo Willems, and favorite characters like Fancy Nancy and Arthur.

Concepts (light blue labels)
Books about the ABCs, 123s, opposites, color, shapes, and time.

Things That Go (yellow labels)
Books about cars, trucks, planes, trains, boats, rockets, and things that go!

Classics (red labels)
Award winners and classic authors such as Maurice Sendak, Bill Peet, William Steig, and Robert McCloskey.

Natural World (green labels)
Stories about nature and animals, including weather, seasons, gardening, and dinosaurs.

Fairy Tales (purple labels)
Stories about princesses, pirates, knights, and dragons, plus traditional folk tales.

Songs and Rhymes (orange labels)
Rhyming stories, books based on songs, Mother Goose and other poetry.

Other (white dot)
Books that do not fit neatly into the above categories. These include books about libraries, sports, historical events, dancing, ninjas, robots, super heroes, jobs and many more topics. Dr. Seuss is here too!

Inside of each category, the books are alphabetized by author. In the catalog, it looks something like this, for the book Olivia by Ian Falconer:

Mill Valley Children’s Favorites           E Falconer              CHECK SHELF

You’d find Olivia in the Favorites section of the picture books, in alphabetical order under Falconer.

Our goal is to make the picture book collection easier to browse for our youngest visitors. One of the reasons the Go! section circulated so well is because kids who love trucks, trains, and any other transportation vehicle could find all those books in one location. Library staff is still here to help patrons find specific titles, and roughly 30 percent of the collection is not categorized. Those books, which we have designated “Other” and don’t fit into one of the eight colored categories, have a white dot on the spine label and are arranged alphabetically by author. In that area you’ll find great books about libraries, ninjas, sports, ballet dancers, jobs, and much more.

Please, let us know how you like the new system. The Children’s Room staff is always happy to help find books, give recommendations, and more. Just ask!

-Jessica and Lauren

The Picture Books are Moving!

About Me BooksWhere are the princess books? The truck books? Classics?

Children’s Staff are asked these questions all the time about our picture book collection. Currently, our collection is arranged alphabetically by author, except for the Things That Go! section and 123s and ABCs section. We noticed that these books get checked out all the time. Why? Because they are easy to find! We hope that creating more categories and grouping the picture books together will help you browse them more easily, and discover new ones, too.

Our new picture book categories are:

About Me (dark blue labels)
About MeBooks about behavior, family, feelings, personal health, school, friends, and daily routines. You’ll find books about using the potty and new baby sisters in this area. 

Favorites (pink labels)
Favorite authors like Mac Barnett and Mo Willems, and favorite characters like Fancy Nancy and Arthur.

Concepts (light blue labels)
Books about the ABCs, 123s, opposites, color, shapes, and time.

Things That Go (yellow labels)
Books about cars, trucks, planes, trains, boats, rockets, and things that go!

Classics (red labels)
Award winners and classic authors such as Maurice Sendak, Bill Peet, William Steig, and Robert McCloskey.

Natural World (green labels)
Stories about nature and animals, including weather, seasons, gardening, and dinosaurs.

Fairy Tales (purple labels)
Stories about princesses, pirates, knights, and dragons, plus traditional folk tales.

Songs and Rhymes (orange labels)
Rhyming stories, books based on songs, Mother Goose and other poetry.

Other (white dot)
Books that do not fit neatly into the above categories.

We are currently in the process of looking at each and every picture book, determining its best category, and adding a new colored label to its spine. Currently, the entire collection is in alphabetical order by author, but in a few weeks we’ll group the categories together and alphabetize those books by author within their categories.

In the catalog, it will look something like this, for the book Olivia by Ian Falconer:

Mill Valley Children’s Favorites           E Falconer              CHECK SHELF

You’d find Olivia in the Favorites section of the picture books, in alphabetical order under Falconer.

Our goal is to make the picture book collection easier to browse for our youngest visitors. One of the reasons the Go! section circulates so well is because kids who love trucks, trains, and any other transportation vehicle can find all those books in one location. Library staff is still here to help patrons find specific titles, and roughly 40 percent of the collection will not be categorized. Those books, which we have designated “Other” and don’t fit into one of the eight categories, will have a white dot on the spine label and be arranged alphabetically by author. In that area you’ll find great books about libraries, ninjas, sports, ballet dancers, jobs, and much more.

Many other libraries have forged the path before us and shared their processes to make this project run smoothly. A special thanks to the South Novato Library for meeting with us to explain what worked and didn’t work for them.  We encourage your comments once we have re-shelved the books by category in early March!

-Jessica

Families, Dragons, and Heroes: New Books for Older Readers

The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher by Dana Alison Levy
fletcherMeet the Fletchers: four adopted brothers, two dads, one dog, one cat, and possibly a turtle and a kitten, although that remains to be seen. This vibrant family drama is funny, realistic, and heart-warming. Will soccer-star Sam actually audition for the school musical? Will brainiac Eli survive his first year at a private school that doesn’t believe in recess? Will Jax ever get to interview the cranky neighbor next door, despite the incident with the skunk? And what about preschooler Frog, who claims to have a best friend named Ladybug? Fans of The Penderwicks will enjoy this madcap dash through one family’s year of laughter, tears, and shenanigans. (ages 8-11)

The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim by E.K. Johnston
The-Story-of-OwenWhen Siobhan meets Owen, he seems like just another new kid at school, befuddled by where to go and running late. But Siobhan and all the other kids know that Owen is much more than that. Nephew and son to three legendary dragonslayers, the sixteen-year-old is destined to a life of warring against fiery beasts. Now, with lethal dragon attacks on the rise, Owen must join with his father and aunts to battle the fearsome creatures. Told in the voice of Siobhan, who joins Owen as his bard, this modern-day tale of carbon-eating dragons and Internet-fueled theories is richly interesting and a pleasure to read. Highly recommended for fans of The Last Dragonslayer by Jasper Fforde or The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley. (ages 11+)

His Name Was Raoul Wallenberg: Courage, Rescue, and Mystery During World War II by Louise Borden
raoulwallenberg_hres-2This accessible biography tells the remarkable story of Raoul Wallenberg, a young Swedish architect who spoke five languages, traveled the world, and was known for his kindness and quiet, listening ways. As huge swaths of Europe fell to the Germans in the early 1940s and rumors of Jews being put on trains and deported grew frighteningly larger, the world needed someone from a neutral country to travel to Budapest to help the Jews. Raoul Wallenberg accepted the job. Armed nearly with charisma and guts alone, Raoul proceeded to carry out an audacious plan that ultimately saved thousands of Jewish lives. This tale of diplomacy, daring, and incredible heart is deeply moving. Louise Borden is right. We should all know his name. (ages 12+)

-Molly

Rhyming Animals and Saving Them Too: New Books for Younger Readers

1 to 20, Animals Aplenty by Katie Viggers
1.20Counting is curious and playful in Katie Vigger’s animal-infused picture book. Whether it is “one fox in a pair of socks” or “sixteen chickens reading dickens,” this warm book will make readers giggle and admire the aesthetics of the animal kingdom. Young readers learn to count and learn species names, even if these quirky animals wear wigs or pajamas! Using pastel colors, the artwork is the star of the show, in a Jon Klassen meets Wes Anderson way. (ages 3-7)

Queen Victoria’s Bathing Machine by Gloria Whelan, pictures by Nancy Carpenter
queen-victorias-bathing-machine-9781416927532_hrListlessly gazing at the sea, Queen Victoria of 17th century England longs to swim in the ocean but cannot because it would be an impropriety. Luckily her brilliant and beloved King Albert has the idea to build her a bathing machine! In this studio on wheels, the Queen can change into her bathing suit and walk down her steps to the ocean discretely. Written in rhyme, this witty and pleasant book presents a neat trinket of history. Pen and watercolor art fill the pages while the story teaches kids about love and creative solutions. (ages 5-8)

Imani’s Moon by JaNay Brown-Wood, illustrated by Hazel MitchellImanis Moon Dot DayHazelMitchell2014
“Don’t let the meerkats stomp on your head!” tease the village kids to tiny Imani. Imani may be small, but her dreams are big. She wants to touch the moon and will fly and crash, climb and fall, and endure mockery trying to reach her goal. Inspired by nighttime stories and by the young warriors who do the adumu jumping dance, steadfast Imani will not give up until she creates her own story. Hazel Mitchell bases her story of perseverance and triumph on the Maasai tribe in the Tanzania and Kenyan plains. (ages 5-8)

How to Save a Species by Marilyn Baillie
how-to-save-a-speciesCalling all young wildlife conservations! This important book pulls readers in with wonderful, rare, troubling and successful stories of endangered animals and plants. From the formerly threatened humpback whales who thrive today, to the dangerously low numbers of the Red River giant turtle, kids will be inspired to use sustainable actions to protect dwindling species. Using eye popping graphic design, with photographs, timelines, and a questions & answers notepad, How to Save a Species is a meaningful introduction to ecological preservation. (ages 7-9)

-Courtney

And the 2015 Winners Are…

On Monday, the American Library Association announced the 2015 Youth Media Awards.  As I wrote last year, I love the time leading up to the awards. I visit many of the Mock Newbery and Caldecott web sites and try to read most of the books that are getting buzz for the awards. Just this weekend, I read three books that I thought might win the Newbery Medal, and only one, Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion and the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candice Fleming, was recognized with a Sibert Honor, the award that recognizes nonfiction books.

The ALA streamed the awards live on Monday morning.  It was fun to hear the roar of the crowd when it was announced that six books would receive the Caldecott Honor Award, and the disappointment when only two books would receive the Newbery Honor – last year four books received Honors. One day, I hope to be at the Midwinter ALA conference when the awards are announced, but I did enjoy cheering at my dining room table as the announcers revealed the winners. I am happy with the Newbery choices because the books that won are accessible and send powerful messages. I am also very happy that two graphic novels were recognized: El Deafo by Cece Bell was awarded the Newbery Honor and This One Summer illustrated by Jillian Tamaki (a young adult book) was awarded the Caldecott Honor. I never really form a strong opinion about the Caldecott choices ahead of time because I am not an expert on picture book art. I trust that the Caldecott Committee got it right and am happy that so many great books were recognized.

Here is a list Newbery and Caldecott winners for 2015:

crossoverJOHN NEWBERY MEDAL for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature:

The Crossover, written by Kwame Alexander

NEWBERY HONOR BOOKS

El Deafo, written by Cece Bell

Brown Girl Dreaming,  written by Jacqueline Woodson

beekleRANDOLPH CALDECOTT MEDAL for the most distinguished American picture book for children:

The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend, illustrated by Dan Santat

CALDECOTT HONOR BOOKS

Nana in the City, illustrated and written by Lauren Castillo

The Noisy Paint Box: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art, illustrated by Mary GrandPré, written by Barb Rosenstock 

Sam & Dave Dig a Hole, illustrated by Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett

Viva Frida, illustrated and written by Yuyi Morales

The Right Word: Roget and his Thesaurus, illustrated by Melissa Sweet, written by Jen Bryant

This One Summer,  illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, written by Mariko Tamaki

Check out the complete list of winners - there are so many more wonderful and important awards, and great books to read.

-Jessica

A Swallow, a Badger, and Squirrels: New Books for Older Readers

The Swallow: A Ghost Story by Charis Cotter
swallowPolly loves reading ghost stories and spends hours at her window staring into the nearby cemetery waiting for a ghost to appear. Little does Polly know, her next door neighbor Rose dreads seeing ghosts because they follow her everywhere, from the old lady sitting in the rocking chair in her bedroom to the man who enviously watches her eat breakfast. Even though Polly and Rose have lived next door to each other for months, it is not until Polly hears someone singing in her attic that the two girls meet. Of course she wants to believe it is a ghost, but it is only Rose on the other side of the attic wall. The girls quickly become friends, but their friendship puts Polly in danger when one of the ghosts in Rose’s house takes a dislike to Polly. The girls embark on an investigation to reveal the secrets swirling around Rose and the ghost of her Aunt Winnie. The Swallow is a mysterious and bittersweet ghost story that centers on the friendship between two lonely but brave little girls. (ages 10-13)

The Badger Knight by Kathryn Erskine
badgerknightLife is hard enough for most people in Medieval England, but for Adrian, a sickly albino boy, it is almost unbearable. His father treats him like a baby, his aunt thinks he is a useless addlepate, and the other boys in town bully him. When war with Scotland erupts Adrian sees it as his chance to prove his worth. He sets out on his own — against his father’s orders — to follow his best friend Hugh into battle. On his journey he encounters street gangs, corrupt monks, and virtuous knights, but nothing prepares him for discovering a secret about Hugh. Adrian’s own beliefs are tested as he realizes that the world is not black and white, as he has been taught. The Badger Knight is an excellent choice for introducing young readers to historical fiction. Erskine has created a tale rich with adventure and details about the middle ages. (ages 10-14)

Nine Open Arms by Benny Lindelauf
nineopenIt is 1937 when Fing and her large motherless family move to an old ramshackle farmhouse far from the small Dutch town they call home. The seven siblings’ well-meaning but inattentive father is still alive, but it is their strict grandmother Oma Mei who manages to keep everyone in line. Their new home is nine open arms long and holds many secrets, which slowly emerge through Oma Mei’s stories and her crocodile bag. Divided into sections, this book focuses on the three sisters struggling to adjust to the hardships that their new life brings and the history of the house’s previous owners. The stories from the past and present intertwine to create an enchanted, spooky tale that is at its heart about the true wealth of a family. (ages 10-14)

Nuts to You by Lynne Rae Perkins
nutstoyouWhat is a squirrel to do when scooped up by a hawk? For Jed the squirrel he employs the ancient technique of “Hai Tchree,” which involves relaxing his muscles to slip through the hawk’s talons, landing him in an unfamiliar part of the forest. Even though Jed befriends the local squirrels and even likes their strange food, he misses his own home. Luckily for Jed, his friends TsTs and Chai have begun their own adventure after setting out along the “buzzpaths” to bring him home. When TsTs and Chai finally find Jed there is no time to dally as a loud rumbling is quickly approaching. The three squirrels realize that humans are cutting down the trees surrounding the “buzzpaths” and they must race home to warn their families. This nutty story gives readers a chance to experience life in the treetops as a squirrel. (ages 8-12)

-Sarah Beth

Coats, Dresses, and Star Stuff: New Books for Younger Readers

grandfatherMy Grandfather’s Coat by Jim Aylesworth, illustrated by Barbara McClintock
In this retelling of the Yiddish folksong, “I Had a Little Overcoat,” a man turns his well-worn coat into a jacket, which later becomes a vest, then smaller and smaller items of clothing until he has nothing but the story. Similar in structure to Joseph Had a Little Overcoat by Simms Taback, this version becomes more robust through the illustrations that show the passage of time. We first see a young man immigrating to America and becoming a tailor, then meeting his wife and having a child. As the garment wears out, he ages as well, and the family expands and the fashions change – his grown daughter wears bellbottoms and drives a Beetle. Eventually even the toy he makes for his great grandson disintegrates and a mouse collects the threads for a nest. The heartwarming pictures and multigenerational story are enchanting. (ages 5-6).

hortonHorton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories, by Dr. Seuss
In the 1950s, Ted Geisel published short stories in the magazine, Redbook. Some of these, such as The Sneetches, he used in books he wrote later. But just as with The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories, here we have Dr. Seuss stories that are new to us! We get to read “new” tales of Horton and the Grinch and Mulberry Street. It’s a fascinating look into Geisel’s work before The Cat in the Hat made his career really take off. (ages 5-6)

morrisMorris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress, by Christine Baldacchino, pictures by Isabelle Malenfant
Morris loves school, and his favorite thing is the dress-up center. He particularly loves the tangerine-colored dress and the many pairs of shoes that go click, click, click across the floor. It reminds him of tigers and his mother’s hair. Sometimes the boys and girls make fun of him for wearing a dress; they won’t let him play astronaut with them or sit with them at lunch. So Morris builds his own spaceship and hangs his safari adventure drawing from it, and before long some of the kids want to “[follow] Morris to a planet they had never visited before.” With a similar subject to Jacob’s New Dress, this is a sweet story that gently addresses identity and acceptance. (ages 4-7)

star stuffStar Stuff: Carl Sagan and the Mysteries of the Cosmos, by Stephanie Roth Sisson
This picture book biography introduces children to Carl Sagan, a supremely curious and imaginative boy who lived his dream of exploring the wonders of space. He grew up loving science fiction and as an adult, wanted to bring an understanding and delight in the stars to everyone. Beautiful illustrations show his early life, the solar system, many of the NASA projects he worked on, and the messages he helped put on the Voyager spacecraft. Sagan’s television show, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, has been revived as the hugely popular Cosmos series, starring astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson. (ages 4-8)

-Lauren