“Mary Had a Little Glam” is a modern twist on a classic nursery rhyme featuring a young girl named Mary who has an eye for fashion and loves to share her gift with others. When she notices her classmates, some of whom are also children featured in popular nursery rhymes, are looking a bit drab, she works her magic to make them all glamorous. The artwork seamlessly blends together images of new and old across the pages; from the dog walker with the man bun and couple sipping their coffee drinks at a cafe to the classroom teacher outfitted in Victorian-styled dress. I love the obvious nods Tammi Sauer and Vanessa Brantley-Newton make to timeless stories while adding their personal twists in the process. It makes for an enjoyable story for both the adult and child reading it!

Owen Davey’s “Crazy About Cats” isn’t just a visual feast with unique, eye-catching art, but also a fun read that explores the interesting world of wild cats. The book features an orange, green, and tan color scheme which is very fitting for many of the animals the author highlights. (Some of whom he draws in real life scale!)  What I really love about this book (other than the absolutely amazing art) is the writing. It’s clear and concise and lacks the condescending tone some resource books for younger readers have. This book is great for a person of any age who enjoys learning about animals, especially if they enjoy aesthetically pleasing art over photographs. And if you fall in love with Owen Davey like I did, he has two other books in this collection, “Smart About Sharks” and “Mad About Monkeys,” that are just as engaging and informative.

Probably one of THE children’s books of 2017, “Dragons Love Tacos 2” imagines a world in which our favorite taco loving dragons are faced with a dilemma of catastrophic proportions; one that can only be solved by embarking on a dangerous journey to the past. Adam Rubin and Daniel Salmieri return with another quirky tale filled with taco trees, hungry dragons, and lots of mild (but never spicy!) salsa. The narrator takes you along for the ride, asking questions and engaging you in conversation, making you feel like you’re responsible for moving the story along. This is one of my favorite things about Rubin—his ability to pull the reader in and make them an active participant instead of a passive observer. If you have a love for tacos and silly dragons, definitely pick up a copy of this book! (Only after you’ve read the first one, of course.)

You can find all these books – and more! – at any of our six bookshops.


Black Lives Matter

We at Busboys and Poets are distressed at the senseless violence against Black men, women, children, and Black people of all genders that has become all too commonplace in this country. Not a day goes by that we don’t see a video, a Tweet or a Facebook post of a Black person facing assault or … Continued

Busboys and Poets Book Review: The Cooking Gene

Busboys and Poets Book Review: The Cooking Gene

In “The Cooking Gene,” culinary historian Michael Twitty sends his reader on a tantalizing journey starting at the kitchen table, leading his readers all the way to the cotton fields of Virginia and the plantations of North Carolina. He captures his audience by centralizing the topic of southern cuisine which depicts to the reader a … Continued

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Split This Rock Poem of the Week: Karenne Wood

The Poet I Wish I Was    1. A white poet whose work I admire said she feels most inspired on her daily four-mile walk through a forest. 2. I wish I had time to walk four miles daily. I can usually manage one mile with dogs. My dogs are distractible, and they distract me. … Continued