Kristin R.'s Picks

Kristin is an artist who lives in a house that is part library, part weird and eccentric art collection. She is an eclectic reader, often stealing her husband's current book (to the point where he's started leaving bookmarks in things he thinks she might enjoy!) Some of her favorite authors include Ursula K. LeGuin, Jonathan Stroud, Tamsyn Muir, Nicola Yoon and Kiese Laymon. When not at the bookshop, she is usually working on art or...you guessed it, reading. If you find yourself in our Burlington store, check out her mural, right above the children's section.

Big Tree by Brian Selznick

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.

 

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Big Tree By Brian Selznick, Brian Selznick (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Brian Selznick, Brian Selznick (Illustrator)
$32.99
ISBN: 9781338180633
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Scholastic Press - April 4th, 2023

From a vast view of outer space, we zoom in to a miniscule spark of life. A voice calls out to the stars and the story begins. Through two seeds, two tiny seeds among the thousands mothered by a wise sycamore tree, Selznick takes us on one of his best voyages yet. We get to experience mystery, adventure, time travel and the gentle exasperation of a brother who loves his sister even if he can't understand her completely. But the best part of this tale is that it doesn't remove us from this world. It's a retelling of our beginning, a reimagining of how we're connected.


The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich by Deya Muniz

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.

 

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The Princess and the Grilled Cheese Sandwich (A Graphic Novel) By Deya Muniz Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780316538725
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Little, Brown Ink - May 9th, 2023

With a solid style and ENDLESS cheese references and puns, this delightful tale is saturated with fashion, food, and some creative anachronisms. The blossoming romance between Lady/Duke Camembert and Princess Brie is off the wall adorable, and if you don't have a hankering for a gooey grilled cheese after reading this book, are you sure you really read it?


Nothing Special (African American Life) by Desiree Cooper

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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Nothing Special (African American Life) By Desiree Cooper, Bec Sloane (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Desiree Cooper, Bec Sloane (Illustrator)
$18.99
ISBN: 9780814349731
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Wayne State University Press - October 4th, 2022

A young boy from Detroit visits his grandparents in Virginia for the summer. He's excited to be spoiled with extra special activities (isn't every grandkid?) but finds it hard at first to adjust to the slow pace of rural life. But when he does, he learns the beauty of doing "nothing special." The illustrations set the playful, cozy tone of this lovely story.


The Night Wild by Zoë Tilley Poster

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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The Night Wild By Zoë Tilley Poster, Zoë Tilley Poster (Illustrator) Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780525553786
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Dial Books - July 19th, 2022

VT artist Zoe Tilley Poster takes us on a wild moonlit romp alongside "Dog." The night is mysterious and beautiful but also filled with adventure, making this a perfect bedtime story. Poster's soft, dreamy illustrations are done in brushed graphite which lets us really see the night through Dog's eyes. You may recognize her artwork from Frog Hollow or other local galleries.


Only the Best: The Exceptional Life and Fashion of Ann Lowe by Kate Messner, Margaret E. Powell, Erin Robinson

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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Only the Best: The Exceptional Life and Fashion of Ann Lowe By Kate Messner, Margaret E. Powell, Erin Robinson (Illustrator) Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781452161600
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Chronicle Books - October 18th, 2022

I love stories about hidden histories! Authors Kate Messner and Margaret E. Powell tell us the story of Ann Lowe, a couture fashion designer. Lowe was highly sought after by "the social register" but not acknowledged publicly for a long time, because she was black. We owe so much to women like her who persevered behind the scenes to raise an art form and earn respect. Her story of hard work and artistic flair will inspire creative readers.


The Universe in You: A Microscopic Journey by Jason Chin

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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The Universe in You: A Microscopic Journey By Jason Chin Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780823450701
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Neal Porter Books - December 13th, 2022

We are lucky to have a Caldecott winner in our midst! VT author/Illustrator Jason Chin's upcoming title is another example of his mastery in blending art and science. Full page spreads showing the insides of cells are as lushly imagined & illustrated as those where we more readily recognize the landscape. This book captures the magic of discovering whole new worlds and having your view shifted (in a good way!).


Curious Cases: True Crime for Kids by Rebecca Valley

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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Curious Cases: True Crime for Kids: Hijinks, Heists, Mysteries, and More By Rebecca Valley Cover Image
$9.95
ISBN: 9781646043491
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: Bloom Books for Young Readers - July 19th, 2022

The true-crime craze isn't just for podcast-addicted adults! Kids love reading about weird facts and implausible stories, and Rebecca Valley's book is a well-curated selection of age appropriate true crimes that you can give your young reader without worrying. Includes forensic activities to try out!


Grounded for All Eternity by Darcy Marks

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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Grounded for All Eternity By Darcy Marks Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781534483361
Availability: Not in stock. At Our Partner Warehouse: Usually Ships in 4-7 Days
Published: Aladdin - July 26th, 2022

Darcy Marks' debut is going to strike a chord with kids who've been told to stay home when things are afoot (hello pandemic.) But these aren't exactly ordinary kids, with their wings and horns, and these aren't just any suburbs, they're the suburbs of Hell. Their parents are trying to keep them safe as a truly evil soul is making a break for Earth; Salem, Mass. to be exact. My inner goth had such a great time with this book!


Wednesday and Woof #1: Catastrophe by Sherri Winston

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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Wednesday and Woof #1: Catastrophe By Sherri Winston, Gladys Jose (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Sherri Winston, Gladys Jose (Illustrator)
$5.99
ISBN: 9780062975997
Availability: Click Title to See Location Inventory
Published: HarperCollins - May 24th, 2022

Wednesday & her service dog are out to solve mysteries and they have a great time doing it. This is a new series for readers who are just starting chapter books. It offers encouragement by taking breaks to celebrate how many words they've read, and to stop and think about the content. But it's done in a way that fits the sleuthing and fun of the story itself.


Tasting Light: Ten Science Fiction Stories to Rewire Your Perceptions by A. R. Capetta

Reviewed by: 
Kristin R.
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Tasting Light: Ten Science Fiction Stories to Rewire Your Perceptions By A. R. Capetta (Editor), Wade Roush (Editor) Cover Image
By A. R. Capetta (Editor), Wade Roush (Editor)
$19.99
ISBN: 9781536219388
Availability: Not in stock. At Our Partner Warehouse: Usually Ships in 4-7 Days
Published: MITeen Press - October 11th, 2022

I love gifting short story compilations, because chances are, your recipient is going to find at least one new author to fall in love with. Tasting Light explores everyday coming-of-age issues but throws in speculative curveballs, like having your AI doppelganger snitch on your best friend, or choosing a new voice (think organ transplant) that helps express your true identity, but realizing there are strings attached. This is a great intro to a really diverse group of young adult authors! (Edited by A.R. Capetta, & includes a story by William Alexander. Both teach Writing for Children & Young Adults at VCFA, and have published several titles each in YA & MG respectively.)


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