Daring to Be Different- Picture Books

IMG_7848January Picture Book Recommendations

This month I would like to feature 4 Fabulous Picture Books which encourage children to embrace the unique elements of their characters which make them special.  Hope you enjoy these selections- please feel free to let me know which Picture Books you have read recently which I should consider reviewing.

  1. Deer Dancer 

written by Mary Lyn Ray and illustrated by Lauren Stringer

published by Beach Lane Books in 2014

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This is such a lovely book featuring a young dancer and her ballet teacher- I adore the sensitive illustrations and the lush green forest scenes.

A gorgeous young girl meets a graceful deer in a quiet forest, the deer creeps closer and the girl becomes enraptured by the powerful and elegant animal.  Her dance teacher, Nona, encourages her to use her body to make beautiful shapes- to express her special dance.


“Hold your head as if you’re wearing antlers.”


she says, ” Listen with your cheekbones.”

2) A Boy and A Jaguar

by Alan Rabinowitz and illustrated by Catia Chien

published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in 2014


I’m so excited to share this wonderful book-  one of my favorite Reads of 2015…. Please do check it out.

This is the true inspirational story of Alan Rabinowitz-  an amazing man who was able to use his extraordinary ability to communicate with animals to set up a charity devoted to helping Large Cats throughout the world-  please check the fantastic work out that Panthera does.

As a young boy Mr. Rabinowitz struggled with stuttering.  With encouragement from his teachers and his family he was able to overcome his difficulties by employing many strategies.  Please also have a look at this charity for which Dr.Rabinowitz is a spokesperson- The Stuttering Foundation

I know that my pets listen and understand.  Animals can’t get words out, just as I can’t get words out.  So people ignore or misunderstand or hurt them, the same way people ignore or misunderstand or hurt me.

I make a promise to my pets.

I promise that if I can ever find my voice, I will be their voice and keep them from harm.


A remarkable story of courage and resilience and of hard work and dedication.  Enjoy this beautiful treasure.


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Red  A Crayon’s Story

by Michael Hall

published by Greenwillow Books in 2015

How many times do I say…. one of my favourite books…..but honestly this is one of my very very favourite books!!!! I LOVED it!  And feel very strongly this is a MUST READ for every family….. Please do go and check out this wonderful simply written picture book which speaks to the heart of any parent or child who has struggled with feeling constrained by labels or diagnoses….

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This is a story about a Red Crayon…who struggled….but don’t worry there is a VERY happy ending.

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It is a story about being true to oneself and breaking free of unhelpful constraints.

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4) The Wonder

By Faye Hanson

Published by Templar Publishing in 2014


Another uplifting story about a young boy who finds the courage to express his creativity through wonderful drawing.  He must overcome initially obstacles of teachers who misunderstand him…but he perseveres and triumphs as he finds an encouraging art teacher who gently prompts him to continue with his work…


This little boy has loving parents


After coping with many people discouraging him by implying that he was day dreaming and lacked focus…he was finally able to find a place where he was able to use his amazing talents!  And to be praised and to grow….


No Daydreaming today!

I’m so pleased to be part of a school which encourages creativity and supports my children in developing their talents and commends them for having their own passions and projects.


“Wonder”ful illustrations illuminate this lovely book.


“Every child is an artist.  The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” Pablo Picasso


I would love to hear from you about any picture book recommendations you might have for me.  Thanks for reading my blog and following my writing.

What am I currently reading?

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  1. Lyn Lee · January 20, 2016

    Lovely books! Great to have you write a blog like this!
    “The Wonder” reminds me of “Dot” by Peter Reynolds, and “Red” sounds like such a cool book. I love the phrase “listen with your cheekbones”, and I think my kid will really love reading that book. Now to get them all from the library!

    Liked by 1 person

    • libbyvine · January 20, 2016

      Please do check them out- they are Super!


    • libbyvine · January 23, 2016

      I love Peter Reynolds! Thanks for reading my blog.


  2. Patricia Tilton · January 22, 2016

    I’ve read a “Boy and His Jaguar” and loved the story. But, I haven’t read Deer Dancer or Wonder and both intrigue me. Love the lush artwork!

    Liked by 1 person

    • libbyvine · January 23, 2016

      Highly recommend both wonder and deer Dancer- yes, illustrations fabulous


  3. marlenedotterer · January 24, 2016

    Thanks! With my children all grown, I don’t often get to see what’s good in picture books. I need to know now that my nine youngest grandchildren are at reading age. Must send them good books!


    • libbyvine · January 24, 2016

      I hope you find some recommendations on here which will be helpful.


  4. haloangel1 · January 24, 2016

    Lovely selections! The images are beautiful. Thanks for this post!


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