Lit, Reading, Canines
Poetry Friday: Dinner at the Panda Palace

Spouting Off About Whales, and Squirrels

Every once and a while (okay, fairly often) a children's book pops up that everyone but me seems to know about. One of the first-graders at the Maple Street School chose Simon James' Dear Mr. Blueberry at a book fair, and she and her teacher were singing its praises. The title was vaguely familiar, but I had no idea the picture book was about a whale.

School Library Journal recommended the 1991 book for beginning readers, summarizing,

It is summer, and Emily discovers that a whale is living in the pond in her yard. Eager to learn more about this amazing animal, she writes a series of letters to her teacher, Mr. Blueberry, asking for information about whales and their habits. The humor of the situation lies in Mr. Blueberry's replies. He sends Emily some details, but he is also quite adamant that whatever is in her pond is not a whale since they live in salt water. Nevertheless, both Emily and readers know that indeed there is a whale in the pond, and the proof is the amusing, full-page watercolor cartoons.

So, we have a new one for the library list.

My son is currently reading Busy, Busy Squirrels, a nonfiction book of straight-forward text ("Squirrels are furry, bright, lively little animals that are very busy") and photos (including squirrel teeth up close, ew) by Colleen Stanley Bare. It's a no-nonsense companion to more whimsical, fictional work like Melanie Watt's Scaredy Squirrel and Don Freeman's Earl the Squirrel.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

If your son likes squirrel books, I just read Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend by Melanie Watts. I thought it was hilarious.

We'll add it to our list as well!

Renee, Junior loves Scaredy Squirrel, so he'll be happy that there's a follow-up.

Wisteria, evidently Simon James has written several other titles about whales, too. It's fun getting personal recommendations from the kids I know!

The upcoming Kiki Strike book includes giant squirrels. I adore Scaredy Squirrel, myself.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)