by Susan Collins Thoms (Author), Roge (Illustrator)
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Sterling (March 4, 2008)
What to expect: Iguanas, Pets, School, Vacation
When a classroom pet—Cesar, a green iguana—is left alone for spring break, he becomes a “puddle of sadness.” Once Cesar puts the moping aside, he decides to go on his own journey, documenting his daily activities in a journal. His journey is an activity-packed exploration of the elementary school: hockey, basketball, art, and even tanning under the French fry heat lamp in the cafeteria. Cesar also discovers that he is not the only classroom pet.
This book is fun for so many reasons: Not only does it give some insight on what mischief class pets get up to while the kids are away, it shows how difficult it can be to return to school after a fun vacation, and highlights many enjoyable reasons for returning to school. The journal style narration adds a different element to the typical picture book—a feature that the older readers will enjoy (perhaps, it could even inspire kids to start there own journal). The illustrations are rich and lively, and the bumpy texture on the spine of the cover is a suave touch.
Add this book to your collection: Cesar Takes a Break
Added Bonus: Cesar Takes A Break is part of Sterling Children’s Books fantastic new program—a website that allows “you” to download audiobooks of select Sterling picture books. The audio narration is entertaining and, if you can believe it, FREE! A great companion to the picture book—my daughter and I really enjoyed listening to the audio and looking at the great pictures. It truly adds a new element to reading, keeping it fun and current.
Giveaway: Fantastic news! Sterling Children’s Books is giving us all of the 8 books in the program to give to 3 of our readers. Check back later for more details.