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TAR BEACH by Faith Ringgold
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1939 HARLEM Flying eight year old Historical fantasy Dreamy poetry   Nitty Gritty: Childrens / story book / historical fiction (ages 4-8) First person-young girl’s point of view Quilted illustrations and text Flight of fantasy Vivid imagination Themes — freedom, family love, longing, torn between two worlds Symbolism — flying (child flies over the rooftops of her home), looking down on unsuspecting family (adults...

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SNOOK ALONE by Marilyn Nelson, Illustrated by Timothy Basil Ering
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COME BACK, ABBA Snook is lonely.  Left behind. Makes friends, learns lessons, waits.  happy ending.   Nitty Gritty: Picture Book (Verse novel for children?) Third person / omniscient POV (storyteller feel with insights into dog emotions) Fiction/poetry Hybrid of poem collection, picture book, verse novel for the very young, storybook Main character – dog (Snook), monk (dog’s owner – Abba Jacob) Dog emotions Themes...

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ALEX THE PARROT – NO ORDINARY BIRD – A TRUE STORY by Stephanie Spinner, illustrated by Meilo So
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BIRD BRAINS ARE DEEP THINGS True tale picture book. Scientist, parrot, co-learning. Questions, answers, growth.   Nitty Gritty: Picture book Non fiction Animal story True tale of one amazing animal Experiment recap – with methods and results Featuring scientist and parrot Appropriate for all ages Cartoonish pictures make story accessible to the very young Vivid colors Heavy use of white space Parrot personality and...

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SHIVER ME TIMBERS! PIRATE POEMS AND PAINTINGS by Douglas Florian, illustrated by Robert Neubecker
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AHOYS, AVASTS AND TREASURE MAPS Pirate poems, codes. Definitions, names. Silly, sly, splashes of truth.   Nitty Gritty: Children’s / picture book / poetry Poetry collection Pirate theme Shifting third person and omniscient POV Themes: pirates, poetry No central plot arc – collection of pirate themed poetry centered around traditional pirate lore (fish food, treasure maps, codes, punishments, famous pirates, flags, weapons) Overall feel...

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LION, LION. by Miriam Busch, Illustrated by Larry Day
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LOVE THAT LION Bold. Brave. Beautiful.  A lion looking for lunch, finds a friend instead.   Nitty Gritty: Who: pre-readers; boy, Lion What: picture book; clever humor tilting towards the dark side Where: anywhere When: anytimeWhy: A boy wants to find his lion, a lion wants to find his lunch. How: Through shouting, yelling, searching, asking questions, talking and listening....

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