Synopses & Reviews
Lion, Tiger, and Bear, oh my!
In Locust Grove, Georgia, an American black bear named Baloo, a lion named Leo, and a Bengal tiger named Shere Kahn all live happily together. The three animals were rescued over twelve years ago and brought to live at Noahs Ark Animal Sanctuary. The trainers there tried to separate the trio for fear that fights would break out. The animals did start acting outbut only until they were reunited in the same pen. This true story of unlikely friendship is filled with photographs supplied directly from Noahs Ark Animal Sanctuary.
Discover the secrets of the Titanic 100 years after the sinking
Learn all about the search for the Titanic's wreckage in this Level 3 reader featuring photographs of the ship's remains, as well as full-color artwork.
The U.S.S. Monitor
was an entirely new type of warship when it launched in 1862. Dubbed "the forefather of the modern Navy," this ironclad ship changed how wars are fought at sea. But on New Year's Eve, 1862, it sank off the coast of North Carolina in a terrible storm. No one thought the Monitor could be raised, but after 140 years, parts of the ironclad have finally been brought to the surface. This book chronicles the Monitor's revolutionary design, exciting battle, and intriguing excavation.
Illustrated by Larry Day.
In Spanish, Amistad means friendship. It was also the name of a slave ship. In 1838, the Amistad took hundreds of kidnapped Africans on a long journey across the Atlantic, but the brave captives would not give up their freedom, taking over the ship so they could sail back to their homeland. Patricia C. McKissack, Caldecott and Newbery Honor Winner as well as a three-time winner of the Coretta Scott King Award, recounts an amazing chapter in American history for beginning readers.
After the 2004 tsunami in Southeast Asia, a little hippo named Owen was discovered orphaned and alone, far from home. Come read the true and heartwarming story of the animal sanctuary that provided a new home for Owen, where he found an unlikely best friend in a 130- year-old tortoise named Mzee.
For the budding historian, this Level 4 reader gives a comprehensive introduction to Egyptian gods and goddesses, including Horus, Re, and Anubis. As an added bonus, there is tons of neat information about pyramids, mummies, and the afterlife!
Do you love horses? If you do, you're not alone. There's so much to know about these amazing animals. Why do horses neigh? What are baby and adult horses called? How do horses communicate? Beginning readers can find out the answers to these questions-and many more-in this lively, fact-filled introduction to these popular animals. Filled with colorful illustrations and dynamic color photos of real horses, this is a perfect selection for any young horse lover.
Illustrated by Anna DiVito.
The creators of Grossology continue the icky, sticky history lesson with this reader about mummies from around the world. With hilarious illustrations and disgusting facts about mummies, this Level 4 reader will keep readers wrapped up for hours!
Did you know that the giant squid can grow to over forty feet long? Or that the anglerfish dangles a glowing lure above its jaws like a fishing pole to attract its prey? Learn all about some of Earth's weirdest creatures: the giant squid, the gulper eel, the vampire squid, the ghost shark, and more!
Did you know that a full-grown polar bear standing on his hind legs is as tall as an elephant? Polar bears are one of nature?s most beautiful animals, but their home?the Arctic North?is in danger. Kids will love learning about these Arctic animals and finding out more about global warming.
Many people like snakes, lizards, and turtles, and there?s so much to find out about all of these scaly-skinned animals. Are all snakes poisonous? Why do snakes shed their skin? What unusual things can lizards do? Do lizards ever lose their tails? Why do turtles have shells? Kids will find the answers?and much more?in this fun, fact-filled introduction to reptiles. Filled with colorful photographs and illustrations, this is just right for any reptile lover.
Glowing fireflies are a sure sign that it?s summer, but did you know that the greenish light that these bugs emit is meant to attract a mate? This is just one of the interesting facts that kids will learn about in Fireflies! Includes tips on how to make your yard fireflyfriendly.
Why Do Rabbits Hop?
And Other Questions about Rabbits, Guinea Pigs, Hamsters, and Gerbils
Did you know that rabbits can jump 10 feet in one hop, guinea pigs bump noses to say hello, and baby gerbils are called pups?
Pocahontas is famous for saving the life of Captain John Smith, the man she loved. At least thats what legend tells us. Now read the true story of this Native American princess.
Did you know that coral is actually a living creature? That the world?s most famous coral reef, the Great Barrier Reef, is so big that astronauts can see it from outer space? Kids will love learning fun facts about coral reefs, the beautiful fish who make it their home, and why these amazing habitats are in danger.
Starting from the northern United States and southern Canada, millions of Monarchs converge every fall in one region in central Mexico. It's not only an amazing sight to behold for the lucky residents of the area, but also a true miracle of nature. This easy reader follows the 2,500 mile-long journey of the Monarchs, with both full color illustrations and photographs.
More than 200 years ago, explorers went on a journey to the Pacific Ocean. With the help of a young American Indian girl, the trip was a success. Her name was Sacajawea.
How can your tongue tell a sweet taste from a sour one? How do your ears know which way a sound is coming from? Find out in this sense-sational nonfiction book!
Abraham Lincoln was one busy man. He had a country to run. And a war to win. And a family to care for. But when it came time to honor all the soldiers who had died in the great battle of Gettysburg, President Lincoln still took time to say a few words. Two hundred and seventy-one to be exact. Here is a true story about a great man and his famous speech.
When Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus to a white man on December 1, 1955, she made history. Her brave act sparked the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott and brought the civil rights movement to national attention. In simple, lively language, Rosa Parks describes her life from childhood to the present and recounts the events that shook the nation. Her story is powerful, inspiring and unforgettable. An NCSS-CBC Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies
About the Author
The reason I'm a children's book author/illustrator today is that I have a lot of determination. I practiced drawing and revised my stories over and over because I wanted nothing more than to do what I'm doing now--writing and illustrating children's books.
I always knew I'd become an artist and studied art in college in Texas. After graduating from college, I became an Art Director at a graphic design firm. I moved from Texas to New York to work in children's publishing. I got a job as Associate Art Director in children's books at Scholastic, where I designed books and enjoyed working with editors and illustrators. This was excellent experience.
I illustrated my first children's book in 1992 and soon began illustrating full time. I had always written stories, but I began completing manuscripts and mailing them out to publishers in the early 1990's. In 1996, I sold my first two manuscripts -- Boo Who? (Scholastic) and Pen Pals (Grosset and Dunlap) -- both published in 1997.
Now I write and illustrate full time. It is a great job. When I think of a idea, I write it down so that whenever I finish one story I'll have a bunch of ideas waiting that I can begin working on next. I especially love reading and writing funny stories, weird stories, and animal stories.
Books I've written and illustrated include:
Cinderdog and the Wicked Stepcat Albert Whitman, 2001 (ages 4-8, picture book)
Abby Cadabra, Super Speller, Grosset and Dunlap, 2000 (ages 6-8, easy reader)
How to Find Lost Treasure in All Fifty States and Canada, Too Aladdin, 2000 (ages 8-12, NF)
The Haunted States of America Aladdin, 2001 (ages 8-12, NF)
Vincent Van Gogh: Sunflowers and Swirly Stars, 2001 Grosset and Dunlap (ages 6-9, NF)
Happy Monster Day! Scholastic,1999
Pen Pals Grosset and Dunlap, 1997 (ages 6-8, easy reader)
Ivy Green, Cootie Queen Troll, 1998 (ages 7-9)
Red, Yellow, Green What Do Signs Mean? Scholastic, 1998 (ages 4-8)
Boo Who? A Spooky Lift-the-Flap Book Scholastic, 1997 (ages 1-6)
Eek-A-Boo! A Spooky Lift-the-Flap Book Scholastic, 2000 (ages 1-6)
Books I've written include:
I Have A Weird Brother Who Digested A Fly, Albert Whitman, 1999 (picture book)
Light the Candles, A Hanukkah Lift the Flap Book, Puffin, 2000
The Garden That We Grew Viking/Puffin, 2001(ages 4-7, easy reader)
The Pizza That We Made Viking/Puffin, 2001(ages 4-7, easy reader)
Scat Cats! Viking/Puffin, 2001(ages 4-7, easy reader)
Backwards Day, Scholastic, 2000
Why Do Dogs Bark? Puffin, 2001(ages 6-8, easy reader)
Why Do Cats Meow? Puffin, 2001(ages 6-8, easy reader)
The Spooky Sleepover, Grosset and Dunlap, 1999 (ages 6-8, easy reader)
Pajama Party Grosset and Dunlap, 1998 (ages 4-7, easy reader)
Space Dogs on Planet K-9 Troll, 1998 (ages 7-10)
Books I've illustrated include:
Breakout at the Bug Lab Dial, 2001(ages 6-8, easy reader)
Hector's Hiccups Random House, 1999
Shadows Everywhere Scholastic, 1999
Hot Cha-Cha! Winslow Press
No Fair! Scholastic, Hello Math
The 100th Day of School Scholastic
Ten Little Ballerinas Grosset and Dunlap
I Love You Mom Troll
I Love You Dad Troll
My First Book of Sign Language Troll
Answers to questions people sometimes ask me:
1. Where do you get your ideas?
I get ideas many different ways. Sometimes, ideas just pop into my head. I also listen to and watch the people around me for ideas. I read to get ideas. I daydream to get ideas. When I get an idea, I write it down in an idea notebook, so I won't forget it. I think ideas are the easy part of writing. I get lots of ideas for books all the time. Developing them into a book with a beginning, middle and end is the difficult, time-consuming part. The idea is important, but an idea isn't a book until it has been developed into a story that works as a whole from start to finish.
2. When and why did you decide to become an author and artist?
I've been writing and reading stories all of my life. I didn't concentrate on writing children's books until around 1990. In 1991, I began regularly submitting manuscripts to publishers.I began writing because I had story ideas that I thought would make good books. I've always known I would become an artist--ever since kindergarten.
3. Why don't you illustrate all of the books you write?
I haven't had time to illustrate all of the books I write, but I've usually been very happy with the work of the illustrators who have illustrated my books. I wasn't happy with the art in a couple of books, but I don't think it's fair to try and control the artist, so I keep out of the artist's way as much as possible. I continue to illustrate books by other authors as well. I have just as much fun illustrating a book written by someone else as I do illustrating books I write. As long as the story is good, illustrating it is fun.
4. Did you like school when you were a kid?
Most of the time. I got bored during the summer, so I was glad when school started. I loved getting a new lunchbox and choosing what I would wear the first day. But then after about 2 weeks of school, I wished for summer again. I like to read and I made good grades, so school was mostly fun for me.
5. How do you develop your characters and plot?
I've usually already decided on a main charater and 1/4 to 3/4 of a plot before I start writing a story. I just write and work out the rest of the characters and plot as I go along. I have a college art degree, but have no formal training as a writer. I learn the rhythm and structure of stories by reading books and thinking about how they are structured. I also read instructional books about how to write.
6. What is your favorite part about writing? Why?
Getting an idea; finishing a book manuscript; getting an offer from a publisher; and seeing my book in a store are all big thrills. The process of writing is not always fun. But I'm driven to write, and time flies when I'm writing.
7. How hard has it been to get your works published?
It was hard to sell the first manuscript. Then in 1996, I suddenly sold three manuscripts in three months to Grosset and Dunlap and Scholastic.
8. What are your favorite books besides the one(s) you have written?
Spaceship Under the Apple Tree; Martha Speaks; The Giving Tree; A Friend for Dragon; Chrysanthemum; Ruby the Copycat; Marvin Redpost--Is He A Girl?
9. What do you look for in a good book?
Something I think is funny or a feeling I can strongly identify with. A good idea and a memorable plot and characters.
10. Do you have kids or pets? Hobbies?
No kids, but we do have a great cat, who thinks he's our child. For hobbies, I like to hike, bikeride, and read.
Anna Divito lives in Unionville, New York.