“Maggi and Milo Make New Friends”

  • By Juli Brenning
  • Illustrated by Priscilla Burris
  • Best for ages 3 – 5

Though not as big as Clifford, Milo is a very big dog. He happens to also be Maggi’s best friend. She is happy to play with Milo in their backyard, which is why Maggi is not sure what to think about her mom taking her to the park to meet new friends. At the park Maggi begins to play with three new friends and has a lot fun. But she misses Milo and thinks he might be bored. So Maggi wants to take him for a walk and so do her new friends. Before they can walk the “Hercules of dogs,” a price must be paid — roly-polies, dandelion puffs acorns and more. At the end of the day everyone has had fun and Maggi has new friends. But she promises that Milo will always be her best friend.

What’s good: The playful kid’s voice makes this a good story time book for young readers.

What’s bad: An omniscient voice scattered throughout the text is a little confusing.

“Good Night Owl”

  • By Greg Pizzoli
  • Best for ages 3 – 5

It’s time for bed and Owl just wants to snuggle in for a long sleep. Every time he tries to fall asleep, Owl is disturbed by a “squeek.”

Readers will immediately see that the “squeek” is coming from a small mouse.

Unfortunately for Owl he does not find it so easily. Instead he begins the search for the noise. The more he doesn’t find the noise, the more frazzled owl becomes. Soon he is removing the even the roof of his house. With his house in shambles Owl finally sees mouse and says goodnight to the “squeek.” Both Owl and mouse curl up for long night’s sleep.

What’s good: Bright and lively illustrations will engage young readers.

What’s bad:You have to set aside the fact that mice are a normal part of an Owl’s diet.

“The Oodlethunks: Oona Finds an Egg”

  • By Adele Griffin
  • Illustrated by Mike Wu
  • Best for ages 7 – 10

If you were to reimagine “The Flintstones” today, you might come out with the Oodlethunks.

In this first book of the series, we meet Oona and her family. Oona has always wanted a pet. When she discovers an abandoned egg, she is sure she will finally have one. With the help of her parents she egg-sits and dreams that it will be something cute.

When the egg finally hatches, it’s a stegosaurus. Oona and the bully of the story go head to head over ownership of the baby dinosaur. Filled with cartoony illustrations and funny anachronisms, children will laugh while they read this new series. Set aside historical facts — that’s not what this series is about. Kids today will relate to the characters and their issues while having fun reading the story.

What’s good: Fun illustrations and clever plot twists.

What’s bad: A lot of anachronisms, but they add humor to the story.

There’s more!

Find more reviews by McGeath Freeman here.

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