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Updated by Susan Stephenson on Jun 19, 2020
Headline for The Book Chook's Top Children's Picture Books 2017
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The Book Chook's Top Children's Picture Books 2017

Here is a list of my top children's picture books from 2017. I will be field-testing, then adding and subtracting during the year until I come up with my ten favourites. Why not share some (or all!) of these with your kids?

3

Mopoke

Mopoke

Reviewed in Recent Children's Picture Books about Animals 2017. "In shades of brown against a striking matte black background, Mopoke will delight from cover to cover. I love good graphic design and it doesn’t come much better than this. With small visual changes, Bunting enhances the humour and drama of his simple tale. How exciting to discuss so many visual literacy elements with kids!" Read more at The Book Chook.

Triangle

Reviewed in (Seriously) Fun Picture Books for Kids. "Children are quite fond of sneaky tricks - but not perhaps ones played on themselves! They will enjoy reading about Triangle’s naughty plan to frighten Square, and revel in the table turning that takes place. Triangle makes a great read-aloud - it has humour and tension, as well as engaging illustrations for children to look at." Read more at The Book Chook.

6

I Want to Be in a Book

I Want to Be in a Book

Reviewed at The Book Chook. Excerpt: "As well as making a wonderful model for kids’ own imagination and writing, I Want to Be in a Book is a lovely story. Oliver’s writing is heart-warming - from the moment we read that “He (Cecil) thought he might be a little bit special.” we are right there with Cecil, seeing his home, dreaming his dreams, and then being whisked away on magical adventures."

10

Koalas eat gum leaves.

Koalas eat gum leaves.

"The incredibly cute koala on the front cover delights and intrigues immediately. What is he half-hiding behind his back? The endpapers feature koalas too - some conventionally munching gum leaves, but one clearly eating something else. Inside we discover that though most koalas endlessly eat gum leaves, there is one who wants something tastier. He searches for more and through his binoculars we see a snail - No, gum leaves - No!, a snake - Woah. and then an ice-cream - Hello! Such clever use of minimal rhyming text has us chortling and the accompanying graphic design milks every ounce of humour from each situation." Read more at The Book Chook.

A Soldier, a Dog and a Boy

Reviewed in article, Resources for Kids for Anzac Day 2017. "The fact that A Soldier, a Dog and a Boy was based on Hathorn’s months of research on her uncle “…who survived Gallipoli but went on to fight at the Battle of the Somme and was killed there in 1917 at just twenty years old” helps make a story that is already personal and emotional, even more so. The story is all in dialogue, but as you would expect from a poet of Hathorn’s calibre, words are carefully chosen to convey a strong sense of time, place and character." Read more at The Book Chook.

2

Clancy and Millie and the Very Fine House

Clancy and Millie and the Very Fine House

Reviewed in Picture Books that Focus on Friendship. "There’s so much to appreciate about this gorgeous children’s picture book from two of our most beloved creators. For a start, it realistically portrays a friendship between two kids. I love the way Gleeson, with not one extraneous word, presents the play scene between Clancy and Millie. The dialogue is spot-on, and the playing ebbs and flows naturally, just as in real life. It’s great for young kids who are uprooted from a familiar place to be able to read a story about Clancy, who has been there too." Read more at The Book Chook.

The Catawampus Cat

Reviewed in Recent Children's Picture Books about Animals 2017. "Even if kids are too young to understand the word “perspective” and all its implications, I think they will love this story as I did. Just by being himself, catawampus and enigmatic, a cat teaches others to look at life differently. The people in the story whole-heartedly embrace difference and celebrate life askew. And then it’s time for the cat to go… As well as an interesting and fittingly enigmatic ending, I loved the word play Eaton includes in the book: Bob Long the barber is giving a woman a long bob; the town daredevil is called Captain Whizzbang; the town librarian is Miss Read. There’s a constant ripple of humour for the reader to enjoy, as well as lots to think about." Read more at The Book Chook.

7

Leaf

Leaf

"Leaf is a beautiful quality children’s picture book. Its message is one about acceptance and friendship, and also touches on climate change. I believe many children will recognize the way we humans tend to be suspicious of anyone who seems different, and react with anger, driven by fear." Read more at The Book Chook.

8

The Great Rabbit Chase

The Great Rabbit Chase

"Like most rabbits, Gumboot is a skilled escapologist. More and more people join in the Gumboot recovery team as it winds its way through the town and we get to know a little about each one. At last they reach the park and suddenly everyone’s cares and frowns seem to fall away. There’s a final delightful twist, and readers are left with that from-the-boots sigh which comes at the end of every fantastic picture book. " Read more at The Book Chook.

Children’s Book Review, I Just Ate My Friend

What is the children's picture book, I Just Ate My Friend, all about? Read the review at The Book Chook.