This post is part of a weekly series of synopses of children’s books, written by First Book staff members.
Peach and Blue , by Sarah S. Kilborne, illustrated by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher. One day, a cute blue frog living in a pond helps a peach come down out of her nearby tree so she can see “what the rest of the world is like.” In turn, the peach shows the frog how beautiful and interesting his pond is. Through their friendship, they come to appreciate the world around them. Grades K-2.
Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott, adapted by Monica Kulling. The book tells the story of the March family set during the Civil War. Mrs. March must raise her “little women” on her own, because her husband is away serving in the Army. The four daughters include: Jo who longs to be a writer, the serious older sister Meg, gentle Beth, and outgoing Amy. Through the years as they become women, the sisters share their secrets and dreams along their journey of self-discovery. Along with Laurie, their neighbor and friend, the sisters learn about life, love and the true meaning of family. Grades 3-4.
Blubber, by Judy Blume. Jill Brenner is enjoying life as a fifth grader: she lives across the street from her best friend, she’s got a great stamp collection, and Halloween- her favorite holiday, is just around the corner. Life gets even better when Wendy, the most popular girl in school, starts laughing at all of Jill’s jokes and letting her hang out with her crowd. But the jokes that Wendy finds funny come at another girl’s expense, a girl who is a little heavier and “different” than the other kids at school. Pretty soon, Jill finds it very easy to call Linda “Blubber” and pick on her like Wendy does, but nobody realizes, least of all Jill, how hurtful words and jokes can be and how quickly the tables can turn in fifth grade. Grades 5-6.