Erik’s Thanksgiving Picks!

20 Nov

Erik’s Thanksgiving Picks!

Thanksgiving at the Trolls

Thanksgiving at the Trolls (Photo credit: martha_chapa95)

It’s that time of year again – pumpkin pie, turkey, sweet potato casserole, my grandmom’s filling… a time to remember what I am truly thankful for. I am thankful for all of you guys so I am having a great Thanksgiving give away! I have a copy of Eileen Spinelli’s “The Perfect Thanksgiving” to give to one lucky person (see my review below)! All you have to do is comment and I will announce the winner on Friday so I can get the winner’s book to them by Thanksgiving!

givingthanksGiving Thanks: Poems, Prayers, and Praise Songs of Thanksgiving

Edited by Katherine Paterson

Illustrated by Pamela Dalton

56 pages – ages 5+

Published by Chronicle Books on October 15, 2013

Description from the inside jacket:

“Katherine Paterson’s meditations on what it means to be truly grateful – a celebrations of joy at once exuberant and introspective – and Pamela Dalton’s meticulous and exquisite cut-paper illustrations are paired with a collection of more than fifty graces, poems and praise songs harvested from a wide variety of cultures, religions and voices.”

What I thought – The illustrations areย gorgeous! They are made from cut paper, and are beautiful! There are some small, colored illustrations, too. Those are pretty, though they are less seen. I like the variety of poems and prayers and praises in the book, and that they are divided up into sections about different things. I like how there are quotes, poems, songs, prayers scattered in the book. They are from all different cultures and times. There is really something for everyone in this book!

About the author and illustrator:

Katherine Paterson is a two-time Newbery Medal winner and a two-time National Book Award winner.

Pamela Dalton is a master of scherenschnitte. No I didn’t sneeze. Scherenschnitte isย the art of paper-cutting. I think you will agree about Ms. Dalton’s master status when you look at the illustrations in the book.


Sue Morris of Kid-Lit Reviews did a nice review of this book. You can check it out HERE.


Sophie’s Squash

By Pat Zietow Miller

Illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf

40 pages – ages 3 – 7 years

Published by Schwartz & Wade; First Edition edition on August 6, 2013

Editor’s description: “On a trip to the farmers’ market with her parents, Sophie chooses a squash, but instead of letting her mom cook it, she names it Bernice. From then on, Sophie brings Bernice everywhere, despite her parents’ gentle warnings that Bernice will begin to rot. As winter nears, Sophie does start to notice changes…. What’s a girl to do when the squash she loves is in trouble?”

What I thought – This isn’t a “Thanksgiving” book but it is a nice fall time book and I figured a lot of people who read my blog aren’t from the US and this is a great Thanksgiving-y fall-time pick. ๐Ÿ˜‰ The illustrations are a nice shade for the book. They drag you into the story because you can see how much Sophie cares for Bernice. ๐Ÿ™‚ See?


The story line is cute, and the ending is just wonderful! I felt bad when Bernice started to get a ย bit rotten, but it all worked out. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I love the message of the book, that you can really love and care for anything and it will grow. My whole family enjoyed this story. ๐Ÿ™‚

My last pick is a book that was my pick last year. ๐Ÿ™‚ But I love it so much I am picking it again! Plus, I have a copy to give away to one lucky person! Just comment below! And, if you want to make it fun, you can say your favorite Thanksgiving/Fall food! ๐Ÿ˜€

perfectThe Perfect Thanksgiving
By Eileen Spinelli
Illustrated by Joann Adinolfi
32 pages โ€“ Ages 4+
Published by Square Fish October 2007

Summary – Abigail Archerโ€™s mother wears pearls and bakes homemade pies. My mother wears blue jeans and her pies are from the store. Abigailโ€™s cousins read books on velvet chairs. My cousins hop atop the furniture while hollering. Abigailโ€™s turkey is plump and golden. My turkey is burnt like toast. Who has the perfect Thanksgiving?

What I thought – I really like this book! It is silly but has such a great message. It doesnโ€™t mater that your Thanksgiving is not like you see in the movies. What matters is the love a family has for each other and THAT makes a Perfect Thanksgiving! The illustrations in the books are really great too, they are bright and colorful. The story is told in a nice rhyme and this is my pick for The Perfect Thanksgiving Book!

37 Responses to “Erik’s Thanksgiving Picks!”

  1. jama November 20, 2013 at 8:39 am #

    Great picks, Erik! The cut paper illustrations by Pamela Dalton are too amazing. You already know how much I love Sophie’s Squash. Haven’t seen the Spinelli book yet — must be really special if you chose it two years in a row.

    My favorite Thanksgiving food? PIE: pecan, pumpkin, apple ๐Ÿ™‚


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 21, 2013 at 6:57 am #

      Your pie = yum, yum, yum! ๐Ÿ˜€ The Perfect Thanksgiving is… um… PERFECT! (see? I am TOTALLY a master of words!)


  2. Susan Cabael November 20, 2013 at 9:14 am #

    This is the first I’be heard of The Perfect Thanksgiving and it reminds me of the two sides of my family. I’m thankful for finding your blog, Erik–inspirational in so many ways!


  3. Catherine Johnson November 20, 2013 at 9:24 am #

    Giving Thanks sounds lovely, Erik. Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving.


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 21, 2013 at 6:58 am #

      Wishing a magnificent Thanksgiving to you, too! ๐Ÿ˜€


      • Catherine Johnson November 21, 2013 at 7:28 am #

        We’ve had ours, Erik! But I could pig out again :0)


      • thiskidreviewsbooks November 21, 2013 at 7:29 am #

        Yeah! Instead of that song, “Freak out!” we have “Pig out!” ๐Ÿ˜‰


      • Catherine Johnson November 21, 2013 at 7:55 am #



  4. Darlene November 20, 2013 at 9:42 am #

    Perfect picks for Thanksgiving, Erik. We have so much to be thankfull for don’t we. Have a wonderful weekend. I’m off to see my grandchildren!


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 21, 2013 at 7:01 am #

      Wait, I hear a parody coming… You’re off to see your grandchildren, the wonderful grandchildren of yours! (We’re off to see the Wizard, the wonderful Wizard of Oz) Have fun! ๐Ÿ˜€ I am thankful for many things… but more on that for a specific day ๐Ÿ˜‰


  5. readingwithrhythm November 20, 2013 at 10:29 am #

    Some excellent picks Erik! That Giving Thanks book is so beautiful. I especially appreciate those cut paper illustrations. I can’t cut anything at all! I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving and left over turkey. I wish you a lovely holiday.


  6. Robyn Campbell November 20, 2013 at 10:51 am #

    Love this Erik! And I especially love what you said: “I really like this book! It is silly but has such a great message. It doesnโ€™t mater that your Thanksgiving is not like you see in the movies. What matters is the love a family has for each other and THAT makes a Perfect Thanksgiving!” That is positively words to live by! (I’m gonna buy these based on your recommendation because I always trust what you say!) Happy Thanksgiving Erik. My family sends lots of love to your family. ๐Ÿ™‚


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 21, 2013 at 7:21 am #

      Happy Thanksgiving, Ms. Campbell (even though we still have a week ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). ๐Ÿ™‚ I think you’ll like these books!


  7. julie rowan zoch November 20, 2013 at 11:41 am #

    I just read Giving Thanks – itv really is beautiful! Lurv Sophie and her squash even more! Look forward to checking out the Perfect Thanksgiving. Thanks, E.


  8. Joanna November 20, 2013 at 4:05 pm #

    Such great recommendations. I plan on checking out THE PERFECT THANKSGIVING.


  9. Patricia Tilton November 20, 2013 at 4:30 pm #

    What three great recommendations. The Perfect Thanksgiving sounds a bit quirky and I like quirky. Giving Thanks also looks like an extraordinary book and very beautiful. So did you leave any Thanksgiving books for the rest of us? ๐Ÿ™‚


  10. Genevieve Petrillo November 20, 2013 at 4:37 pm #

    Mom read Sophie’s Squash and loved it. I would like to EAT Sophie’s squash. I know I would love it, too!

    Love and licks and a little drool,


  11. K.L. Pickett November 20, 2013 at 9:58 pm #

    Thanks for the recommendations. They look great.


  12. patientdreamer November 22, 2013 at 1:53 am #

    Giving Thanks looks beautiful. They are all great finds, Erik.
    I will always remember celebrating Thanks Giving back in 2007 in New York. That was awesome.
    We don’t celebrate Thanks Giving down here, but I am always grateful for having “met” you. Have a great Thanks Giving, Erik!


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 27, 2013 at 9:50 am #

      Thank you Ms. Tulloch! I’m grateful for having “met” you, too! Have a nice summer (that’s your next season, right?)! ๐Ÿ˜€


  13. Joanne Fritz November 22, 2013 at 11:18 am #

    Erik, it’s so refreshing to read about Thanksgiving while all around me everything is screaming “Christmas!” We’re bombarded by it everywhere, not just on TV. It’s too soon!! I have read (and loved) Eileen Spinelli’s book and Sophie’s Squash, but not Giving Thanks. I’m looking forward to sweet potatoes. Hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving.


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 27, 2013 at 9:54 am #

      Sweet potatoes… yummm… ๐Ÿ™‚ I hate how everyone practically skips over Thanksgiving. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are now the holidays. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ


  14. writersideup November 23, 2013 at 2:40 am #

    Before I say anything else, I have to say I LOVE the Lego pic of THANKSGIVING WITH THE TROLLS! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

    I happen to have GIVING THANKS right here (from the library) and I agree—the illustrations are gorgeous. Such amazing artistry—and patience! I can’t remember who reviewed this book (could’ve been Sue—or you! lol), but here’s a video of Pamela doing cutouts:


    • thiskidreviewsbooks November 27, 2013 at 10:04 am #

      Isn’t that a great pic? I’m jealous! I want to do something like that! ๐Ÿ˜€
      Ms. Morris reviewed Giving Thanks – and shared the video. ๐Ÿ˜ก I really need to start upping it. ๐Ÿ˜‰


  15. Myra GB January 9, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

    Did you know that Sophie’s Squash made it to the top seven for the fiction picture book category for 2013 in Cybils? I have to hunt down this book in our libraries, since our deliberations would begin soon. Are you one of the Cybils judges too, Erik? Graphic novel? Thank you for letting me know about Giving Thanks by Katherine Paterson, will be on the lookout for that one. ๐Ÿ™‚


    • thiskidreviewsbooks January 11, 2014 at 11:54 am #

      I am not a Cybils Judge. How do you become one?


      • Myra GB January 11, 2014 at 8:21 pm #

        I think they give out the call sometime August before the October nominations for the books across all genre. Will alert you to it, once I see the post come out this year. I was not accepted for the first two years that I applied as judge but third time’s the charm last 2012. This is my second year now as second round fiction picture book judge. ๐Ÿ™‚


      • thiskidreviewsbooks January 13, 2014 at 7:20 am #

        Thank you! ๐Ÿ˜€


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