Hello Friday and Perfect Picture Book Friday:
My choice for this week:
Xander’s Panda Party
Written By Linda Sue Park
Illustrated by Matt Phelan
Clarion Books, September 2013
Suitable For Ages: 4 and up
Themes/Topics: inclusion/diversity, animals/panda, parties, zoo
Opening: “Xander planned a panda party. Yes, a dandy whoop-de-do!”
Brief Synopsis: Xander’s plan to host a panda party falls through, since he is the only panda at the zoo, but when he extends the invitation to all of the bears, complications ensue.
Links To Resources: The Smithsonian National Zoological Park page on Giant Panda’s. Diversity in the classroom. PandaCam. (As I wrote this, the PandaCam wasn’t working, but this could be a temporary problem related to the U.S. Federal Government shutdown.)
Why I Like This Book: I heard author Linda Sue Park speak at the Rocky Mountain Chapter of SCBWI speak at the fall Letters and Lines conference. She shared Xander’s Panda Party during her address to the group. I know it’s easy to be impressed by a speaker and her work, but WOW. This is a fun story. It offers a different twist on a party and a zoo story. Plus adds in how to be inclusive, as Xander works through his party invitations. I wanted to get my hands on it to break down the page turns, but the conference bookstore sold out.
Amazon reports the book is 40 pages. The book has a two-page author’s note about the animal groups in the story. The illustrations are soft and fun. I’m traveling this week and as Enzo rebelled against the sheep being held captive in the Kindle, we visited the library with Grandpa. I went straight to the Ps to find this book there! I doubt I’ll be studying it much this week, but we will read it multiple times.
To find more PPBF books, visit Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog.
This is my new blog. I haven’t participated in Perfect Picture Book Fridays since March as I finished website design classes and several project. If you want to keep up with other blog posts, please sign to follow future posts via the RSS feed or by email.
Joanne Roberts says
Welcome back! What a fabulous book to mark your return!!!!! I adore Matt Phelan, and of course, Linda Sue Park is extremely talented. I’m on my way to the library, so keep your fingers crossed. Thank-you.
I delighted to find it at the library. It is a fun book. I hope you find it.
Mike Allegra says
Love the new site, Stacy!
Wendy Greenley says
The title alone is enough to pull me in. So much fun to say! I think I’ll walk around saying that today.
It’s an enjoyable and a fun book!
Patricia Tilton says
The opening sentence is a great hook into the story! It grabbed my attention. I love the idea of this book about diversity. Sounds like it is very well written and humorous. Great choice! Love your new look.
Patricia Tilton says
Just realized that Emma Walton Hamilton will be interviewing Linda Sue Park next Tuesday on the Children’s Book Hub. I’ve read her bio and have already looked at some of her wonderful multicultural/historical fiction novels. Very talented and I found a book I want to review.
That’s nice to hear Pat!
The book also uses larger words, which is fun to read and hear when read out loud.
I agree that the first sentence is an attention grabber and I love the sounds of the subtle alliteration in it.
This is another book that will go on my library list for this week.
Thanks for introducing it to us.
PS: Love your new web site.
I hope you can find it. Thanks!
Teresa Robeson says
I’ve been curios about this book since I only know Ms Park from her MG novels. Thanks for a cute synopsis! I’ll definitely read it now.
Teresa, I’m reading A Long Walk to Water right now. This is a fun picture book.
Sue Wang says
Congrats on the new website. Looks wonderful. I saw that this is a wow book and it’s 40 page -impressive for a children’s book? I want to read it. 🙂
Sue, I haven’t counted the text, but it is sparse like most picture books. It looks like the publisher went over the regular 32-page book to include her author’s note, which is worth it!
Jarm Del Boccio says
It certainly influences our appreciation of a book when we have met the author. Sounds like a good one, Stacy!
Jarm, It really does! Of course, after reading this one several times, it stands up to the test of my son’s attention (which means a lot more than my attention span). It’s a fun book.
Kirsten Larson says
I love how even the synopsis rhymes. I am assuming the whole text rhymes? I saw pandas at the San Diego Zoo a year ago. I could have stood there for hours looking at them.
Kirsten, It does rhyme with a great rhythm for a night time read.
Erik - This Kid Reviews Books says
Great author, great illustrator, great opening, I’M IN!!! 😉 To the library!
Hope you can find it Erik!
I love all things panda! I’m pinning and buying:)
It’s a fun panda book Barb. The author said her son was into all things panda and inspired the book.
Susanna Leonard Hill says
This book looks so cute and fun, Stacy, and also has such a wonderful message! Love your new site! and so glad to have you back on PPBF 🙂 Hope you were able to handle the sheep 🙂
Susanna, We are handling the sheep so far! I hope they won’t quit on us! Lots of great books this week as usual.
What a cute book, and going by my dear friend Pat’s comment, I will be checking out the novels she has written. Thanks Stacy!
Her novels are great too!
Penny Parker Klostermann says
I like you new site. Very clean and clear!
The book sounds wonderful. I added it to my list.How exciting to hear Linda Sue Park!
A great one to add to her list. We’ve read it every night before bed this week!
I am a huge Linda Sue Park fan. It is so cool to see the name Xander used, I know a couple of kids with this name!
Love the new website look.
I am enjoying her latest novel too. Xander is a wonderful name!