From 2010-2012, I wrote a blog called Spine Label. At the time, I was working towards my master's degree in library science, as well as working in a public library (primarily in youth services). Spine Label was where I reviewed books, discussed programs I was implementing at my library, and occasionally wrote about library science more broadly. Spine Label is no longer online; the domain name was my maiden name and it didn't make a whole lot of sense to keep it, particularly once I left my public library job. Happily, I still have access the contents of the blog, which my husband is fond of saying is the best thing I've ever written (I'm not sure what that means for everything I've worked on since then, but I'm going with it). Since I'm writing about children's literature again, I thought it would be nice to revisit the reviews that were once posted on Spine Label, as a way of both looking at backlist titles as well as giving the reviews a proper home on the Internet again. It's worth noting that these reviews were written from the perspective of a public librarian and not necessarily the perspective of a parent.
The following post is edited from one that originally appeared on Spine Label on May 19, 2010.
Boxer Books, 2009
Meeow is a black cat with a big imagination.
In Meeow and the Big Box, Meeow turns a big brown box, red paint, a big green block, a little orange chair and a blue mug into a fire engine.
Boxer Books, 2009
In Meeow and the Little Chairs, Meeow and his friends (appropriately named Baa, Moo, Quack and Woof) turn four chairs, a yellow whistle, a bell, and a green flag into a train.
Admittedly, what first attracted me Braun’s Meeow books was the fact that they starred a little black cat named Meeow. Once I read them, I realized how utterly perfect they are for the toddler and Pre-K crowd. The stories encourage imaginative play with household objects while simultaneously reinforcing color names. If you need proof, there's a very cute post over on Pen Pals & Picture Books about a little boy who made a fire engine for his cat. The illustrations are bright and graphic, and the large font size makes the books ideal for sharing one-on-one or during storytime.