cover image The Library Book

The Library Book

Tom Chapin and Michael Mark, illus. by Chuck Groenink. Atheneum, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4814-6092-7

Singer-songwriter Chapin follows The Backwards Birthday Party, also illustrated by Groenink, with a second picture book adapted from his extensive catalog: in this case, “Library Song” (written with Mark) from his album Moonboat. “I’m going down to the library,/ picking out a book, check it in, check it out./ Gonna say hi to the dictionary,/ picking out a book, check it in, check it out,” sings a brown-skinned girl with round yellow eyeglasses as she runs through the rain. Beyond the rows and rows of waiting books, several classic children’s book figures soon appear on the scene, including Pinocchio, Sleeping Beauty, Babar, the Cat in the Hat, and Mother Goose. Even the serious librarian gets caught up in the increasingly rowdy fun, earning her a “shhh!” from the girl, who is ready to start reading. It’s a book that could easily be used in elementary school classrooms before visits to the library, and readers will enjoy spotting recognizable characters in Groenink’s cozy illustrations. This celebration of reading and libraries is sure to charm those who love both. Ages 4–8. Illustrator’s agent: Stephen Barr, Writers House. (Oct.)