Vol 2 Issue 10 October 2022

Who else feels like Kasey? Are you fastening in for the fast ride through the next few months? Autumn ushers in the official holiday season; before you even celebrate one holiday, you must be prepared for the next. Children's Literature reviewers have enjoyed reading and reviewing new titles ideal for upcoming storytimes and gift-giving. We've included ten notable reviews to help you plan for both. Are you also using the last few months of 2022 planning for next year? Learn what goes into creating new nonfiction titles, so your library or classroom is prepared to make the best purchasing decisions for your students.
It doesn't have to be a bumpy ride through the holidays. Instead, make it a thrilling one!

 

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ChildrensLit Notable Reviews

Cocoa Magic
By: Sandra Bradley
Illustrated by: Gabrielle Grimard
Publisher: Pajama Press
ISBN: 9781772782646
Reviewer: Kate Kupiec

Daniel has been making chocolates alongside his chocolatier Uncle Lewis since he was four years old. Every morning, Daniel spends a blissful hour in the chocolate shop before Uncle Lewis walks him to school, a place that Daniel feels to be cold and lonely. When a new girl named Sarah joins their class, Daniel realizes that school might feel even worse for her. The next morning, he leaves a chocolate in her desk. Finding it, Sarah smiles, as if the chocolate were magic. Daniel looks around and notices that it seems that all his classmates could use a bit of cheer. He begins to leave chocolates for more and more of his peers. The treats seem to brighten everybody's mood. When Uncle Lewis has to go out of town for the World Chocolatiers' Conference, Daniel wonders what will happen without the happiness he leaves in the form of treats from the chocolate shop. Now feeling terrible himself, Daniel opens his own desk to see a pile of treats waiting for him from his classmates. Everyone in the school begins gift-giving to spread this magical cheer so that school is never cold or lonely again. An author's note at the end describes the inspiration for the story. As a clinical social worker, the author has noticed that empathy can be cultivated through the power of a seemingly small act of kindness. Soft illustrations accompany the story well, and the font is clear and legible for children. While some children's books about big topics like empathy miss the mark of a child-friendly vocabulary, this book is well-pitched to reach its intended audience and spark big themes. This could even serve as a good holiday read for young children who might struggle with the joy of gift-giving over merely gift-receiving.