From Animals to Zeus: new children's books

From Animals to Zeus: new children's books

Interested in the latest on children’s books?

Check out these recommenations from the Center for Children’s Books at the University of Illinois. Each month graduate assistants highlight books they liked from the selections reviewed in the Bulletin.

I was particularly intrigued by the first one, as my son is a HUGE Percy Jackson fan -- though I don’t love graphic novels. (Didn't we used to call them comic books?)

For more suggestions and reviews, visit the Bulletin website at

-- “Zeus: King of the Gods,” by George O’Connor (Grades 6-12, $16.99)

The first in a new series of graphic novels detailing the lives and legends of characters from Greek mythology, Zeus walks readers through the very beginning of Greek mythology from the creation of earth and sky to Zeus’ clash with the Titans and his reign upon Mount Olympus. The graphic novel format is a perfect fit for this title which is jam-packed with mythological information and all the battles, drama, love, intrigue, and adventurous illustrations a reader could want.

-- “Henry in Love,” by Peter McCarty (Ages 3-5, $16.99)

Henry, a young cat, goes through a typical school day. Some things this encompasses are waking up to the smell of blueberry muffins, walking with his big brother to school, and doing his best forward roll at recess. Throughout the day, Henry gets closer to the “loveliest girl in his class” — Chloe the rabbit. With minimal yet prominent narrative text, the story unfolds through the extremely detailed ink illustrations of the animal characters. This preschool romance is simple and sweet with just the right amount of whimsy.

-- “Fire” by Kim Cashore (Grades 9-up, $17.99)

Fire is the only one of her kind remaining and she’s determined to be the last. Hated, hunted and worshipped for her seductive beauty and power of mind control, Fire is a human monster. She is determined to make up for her father’s legacy of destruction and manipulation, even if it means risking her life. Fans of the sequel “Graceling” might initially miss Katsa, but they will soon become enamored with Fire, an equally strong female protagonist.

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