Kids’ Book Corner: Two Trashy Books and Two for St. Pat’s

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Many kids love the garbage truck. Mine used to stand outside and wait on the curb for it on trash day. If yours are fans of refuse and the trash collector’s modus operandi, then these two inventive titles are sure to please:

Jonah Winter collaborated with Red Nose Studio to produce the visually-wonderful Here Comes The Garbage Barge!, a retelling (with liberties) of the infamous and true story of the Mobro 4000, a garbage barge that departed in 1987 trash-choked Islip, Long Island, with a haul of almost 3200 tons of trash and, it turned out, nowhere to dump it.

We follow the barge and its tugboat on its over 6000 mile trip from North Carolina to New Orleans, to Mexico, Belize, Texas, Florida and finally to Brooklyn. The 3-D illustrations built from found objects, wire, wood and fabric complement the story. And inside the dust jacket, kids can see how the illustrations were assembled. (4-8 years but artistic, older readers will find the illustrations fascinating.)

Aidan Potts’ witty and percussive Smash! Smash! Truck! begins with trash day from the point of view of some items in the recycling bin, then travels from the bang and clatter of cans and bottles to the loudest bang of all–the Big Bang–to show kids that the universe and our earth recycles itself. It’s a wild, very noisy ride. (5-8 years)

Kids with an Irish heritage, St. Patrick’s Day fans, or followers of the Magic Tree House series will welcome Mary Pope Osborne’s Leprechaun in Late Winter and its nonfiction companion, Leprechauns and Irish Folklore. Set in 1900’s Ireland, Jack and Annie meet and enjoy an life-changing magical adventure with a girl who later grows up to become folklorist Lady Gregory, known for her association with Yeats and the Irish Literary Revival.

The nonfiction companion has many illustrations and covers leprechauns, Irish folklore, fairies, fairy places, and leprechaun gold–all great fun. (7-12 years)

Jo Perry has a Ph.D. in English, taught literature and writing, and worked as a college administrator and as a television writer and producer. She is a reviewer for and is an ongoing contributor to kidsLA Magazine for which she writes about the city, children’s books, and conducts interviews. For two years she wrote the Kids’ Book Club column for the L.A. Times’ Kids’ Reading Room page.

About Karen Young

Karen Young is the founder of My Daily Find.