May 30, 2014

Perfect Picture Book Friday - Red Sings From Treetops

Happy Friday Everyone!!!

Guess what?

Next week is the 100th Perfect Picture Book Week!

Can you believe it?

We should probably have a party.


Next Friday - only one week from right this very second - the day of the 100th Perfect Picture Book post - is when I leave for the SCBWI conference I'm teaching at.

Teaching GROWNUPS!  IN REAL LIFE not online!

(Can you say petrified? :))

I am finishing the pile of critiques.  I am trying to prepare my workshop in a way that will hopefully sound coherent and give the participants a fun and meaningful experience.  I'm also winding up my May online class and starting my June one.  My children are arriving home from college which necessitates driving to pick up, loading and unloading cars, masses of laundry, and packing things away for the summer.  Oh, and I'm babysitting for my granddaughters on Sunday and in charge of the barn chores until my friend gets back from her mini break.  All good things in every way, but I'm feeling a little like I just don't have enough time in the day!

So I'm not sure if I'm going to manage to plan a party.

And you will also have to (please!) forgive me for recycling a Perfect Picture Book today!

I don't feel bad too about it, though, because this book is one of my all-time favorites.  I use it as an example of beautiful language in my class, and if you haven't had a chance to read it you're truly missing out.  Get thee to the library right quick!

Red Sings From Treetops: A Year In Colors
Written By: Joyce Sidman
Illustrated By: Pamela Zagarenski
Houghton Mifflin Books For Children, April 2009, Fiction

Suitable For: ages 5 and up

Themes: Colors, Seasons, Poetry

Red sings from treetops:
each note dropping
like a cherry
into my ear.

Red turns
the maples feathery,
sprouts in rhubarb spears;
Red squirms on the road after rain."

(Don't you just love that?  Can't you just hear that cardinal singing and see the worms wiggling on the pavement?)

Brief Synopsis:  From the jacket: "Color comes alive in this whimsical, innovative book."  That pretty much sums it up!

Links To ResourcesJunior Library Guild Activity GuidePoem StartersReaders Guide

Why I Like This Book:  I love the lyrical language of this book.  The author was so creative in her thinking - the way she describes the colors makes you see, feel, hear, touch, and taste Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.  The art is exquisite and perfectly suited to the poetry.  How can you not love lines like,
"Green waits
in the hearts of trees,
the earth

I hope you'll get a chance to read this book, linger over the language, enjoy the images it evokes, maybe challenge yourself or your children to come up with your own descriptions!

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

I want to take this opportunity to let you all know that PPBF will be going on hiatus for the summer as usual.  I am open to popular opinion as to whether next Friday (June 6) or the following Friday (June 13) will be the last day.  As I said, I will not be here next Friday.  Princess Blue Kitty (my car for those of you who don't know her) and I will be on the road to the aforementioned SCBWI conference.  But y'all can carry on and I'll catch up after the weekend.  Assuming I survive :)  Feel free to voice your opinion in the comments.  As for a party, I guess we could maybe have it a week late...???

PPBF bloggers please be sure to leave your post-specific link in the list below so we can all come see what delights you have in store for us this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!!! :)


  1. You will do FABULOUS, Susanna. I KNOW it - will be praying that you believe it! :). This one sounds DELIGHTFUL, and I, for one, am GLAD you did a repeat (since I haven't been following very long). Will have to see if my library has it.

    And I'm fine with us ending either time (since I'm such a newbie anyway). Hope you enjoy pick number 2 for me :D

  2. I love this book Susanna. I think it was one of the very first I reviewed on my blog. I am actually taking my summer blog hiatus starting on Monday. Enjoy the SCBWI conference.

  3. A summer hiatus sounds delightful, as does this book. Congrats on 100 PPBFs! You can join my 1000 post celebration on Sunday ... we can virtually party ... together. Sounds fun, eh? Happy conference ... there's NOTHING like that feeling of accomplishment when you've given it all to a group of grown-ups whom you've inspired to do the same with their next group of leaders. Have a blast; I'm so proud of you!

  4. A day for milestones and celebration! 100 PPBFs! Wow!!! That's an awful lot of books! I can't even count that high. I don't think that you'll have any trouble with your teaching assignment. From what I can tell about picture book people, they're just a bunch of kids at heart, so you just look at your audience as you would a classroom. This book sounds super. I don't know much about how colors look - I can relate to how they feel and smell. I'll have to check this one out! Thanks for all that you do!

  5. Melanie EllsworthMay 30, 2014 at 9:12 AM

    Congratulations on the 100th, Susanna! Hope you manage to have fun as you make it through these busy times ahead. Thank you for the Joyce Sidman book recommendation - sounds wonderful!

  6. I LOVE this book, Susanna! I think "Red sings from Treetops" Is one of my favorites and I picked it up and read it because of your last review, or because of Joanna's . Because of PPBF any way. It is terrific!

    I Just can't believe how busy you are. Busy , Busy Busy! And congrats on talking at SCBWI! You'll have to tell us what your title is and how you got to do that as well as how it goes. How wonderful! Don't be scared though. You'll do fine. YOU're lovely personality will shine through and charm the pants off the participants. :)

  7. Happy Centennial! and you'll have a good time at the conference. "Red Sings from Treetops" is such a beautiful book - thanks for introducing it to me through the Picture Book Magic course! I prolly should buy my own copy cuz interlibrary loan is tired of my multiple requests....

  8. Vivian KirkfieldMay 30, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    100 Perfect Picture Book Friday posts...that is incredible, Susanna! You are providing a super parent and teacher resource. And today's entry is so lovely, it bears repeating. :)

    Best of luck at the are going to WOW them there...just as you do us. :) Do you know how clever and funny and smart you are? I hope so!

    I'm excited as my #PPBF is part of the book blog tour of Edmund Pickle Chin - A Rescue Donkey Story! I hope everyone will come and visit - if a comment is left at every tour stop...and each blog in the tour is followed, there are many prizes to be won! I've read the posts on the first two stops...Joanna and Stacy...they were fantastic! And i know you are the last stop on the tour, Susanna. :)

    A summer hiatus sounds like a good plan. :) I've taken a couple of leaps of faith and registered for both Kristen Fulton's Non Fiction Archaeology class starting June 1 and Renee Tulippe's Lyrical Language course starting in August...the extra time will come in handy...although I will probably try to post a picture book review each week anyway.

  9. You know, I read this book---sure of it---last year some time, though it's rare I allow myself to "linger" over most books *sigh* Why? No time! You feel like you don't have enough time---because you don't! lol That's why I don't like certain things scheduled in June 'cause there's too much else going on every year. Of course, I can say "don't wear yourself too thin," but that's meaningless. You probably will! Just be careful driving on little sleep!
    And I'm sure whatever you teach is ALways enjoyed and successful. Wish I was one of your students. Ever considered doing it for one of our NJSCBWI conferences?!!!! *hint hint* ;) They're always in June, too! lol

  10. Wow! 100 PPBFs? That's an amazing achievement. We'll start partying now, and won't stop until the cows come home. (If any cows show up around here, I will be mightily surprised, though... ;) ) I so wish I could be in that group when you give your conference presentation -- you will be fab. Rhythm's advice was perfect.

    My last PPBF is up today, although my blog will be active for a couple more weeks. I'll be taking half of June, July and August as a blogcation. Happy hiatus to you!

  11. Catherine JohnsonMay 30, 2014 at 12:38 PM

    Holy smokes you're busy! Love that book!

  12. I love Joyce Sidman's works. Thanks for the heads up on this one. I just ordered it up! Good luck with your presentation. I'm sure it will be grand.

  13. I'm totally jealous of the actual humans who will be in your actual class and have you as an actual live human teacher. Lucky dogs!

  14. Break a leg at the conference Susanna! And yes, I think PPBF has earned a party. :)

  15. pennyklostermannMay 30, 2014 at 6:19 PM

    Yes! I totally love this book.
    How wonderful that it's the 100 Perfect Picture Book Friday!!! You do sound busy, but just remember that Perfect Picture Book Friday is a party all by itself. (A party I've been missing of late but plan to catch up at some point!)
    I know you're workshop will be fantastic. Wish I could be there! Have fun!

  16. I remember this book. It is lovely. (you're forgiven ;)) Wow! we are at 100 PPBF weeks already!!! It certainly earns a party. Can't believe it. Just shows time flies when you're having fun. :) Hey, hope your conference goes well and wish I could be there to enjoy it. I hadn't realised you had grandkids. You don't sound at all old enough.. *giggles* Sorry I am a bit late, but do enjoy your weekend everyone.

  17. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_ErikMay 31, 2014 at 10:02 AM

    How about we have a PPBF101 party? :) So you can be included. :) Good luck at SCBWI! Great PPBF pick!

  18. Looks like a cute one, Susanna! I'm hoping life settles down so I can join you in the fall for PPBF again. Enjoy your conference!

  19. Thanks, Jarm! :) Hope your writing is going well!

  20. Sounds like an excellent plan, Erik. Any party ideas?

  21. Thanks for your enthusiasm and long-standing support of PPBF, Diane! I feel like I barely ever see you anymore! Where do you hide out? :) I do have grandkids but I kind of cheated - I have a step-daughter who is quite a bit older than my kids and the little ones are hers. I managed to become a granny at 46 :)

  22. I think you could teach it, Penny - and be a lot more comfortable teaching in real life than I will be! And seriously, there aren't enough hours in the day for all the things we want/need to do, so don't give PPBF another thought! Post when you can - we love to have you - but no obligation or guilt if you're too busy with other things :)

  23. Thanks, Katie - I'm nervous! But I do really like the idea of a party... any excuse for cake... :)

  24. That is so nice of you to say, Genevieve! You almost make me feel like I can do it. I don't have a career of teaching experience like you do, so the IRL thing has me spooked! Are you going to NJSCBWI?

  25. Thank you for your vote of confidence, Rosi! I so appreciate it :)

  26. It's such a good one, isn't it Catherine? I need to learn to use language like that!

  27. I will look forward to your PPBF (I'm a little behind this week... for a change :)) and I think we will have to party it up for PPBF :) Hurray for you taking a blogcation. I'm seriously considering it too...

  28. I'm not teaching at NJSCBWI thank goodness :) but I am going. Maybe I'll see you there :)

  29. Oh wow! I am jealous! I would love to take both those courses... but just don't have time right now. Thank you for your very kind words and support - you and Genevieve make me feel like I can do it :)

  30. Thanks for the cote of confidence, Clar - I really appreciate it! As for how I got invited, it was because of MBPM. I'm basically teaching a condensed version of my online class, sort of, and was invited by someone who took the class.

  31. Thanks, Melanie! And I hope you enjoy "Red". The language is so lyrical and delightful, truly something to treasure!

  32. Thank YOU, Rhythm! You are such a devoted PPBF member, always posting such wonderful books with such great activities! I wish I could take you with me to the conference - I think you'd be a huge asset and make me feel braver :)

  33. Oh gosh, you're so sweet, Barbara! I hope I manage to inspire someone... or at least not bore them all to tears :) I will try to remember to check out your 1000 post on Sunday! Sounds like a par-tay! :)

  34. Hurray for you taking the summer off, Joanna! Enjoy, enjoy! And I will do my best at SCBWI :)

  35. Thank you so much for your positivity, Joanne! You make me feel like I can do it :) I think you'll love this book if you get a chance to read it. It's different, but there's a lot we writers can learn from it!

  36. It is! We arrived back from Russia last week (I blogged about it), and now i am doing research for WOW non fic pic challenge . . . seven non-fiction PBs in one week! Then, in July, it's our WOW retreat. Besides that, my kids have a graduation party, and I need to finish grading and complete their transcripts. It never ends!

  37. Golly! You sound busier than I am! But with all good things! :)

  38. I ordered it from interlibrary loan yesterday - so hopefully, I'll be able to read it soon. Definitely looking forward to it!

  39. YOU'RE GOING?!!!! There is NO WAY I'm not going to find you! lol Will you be selling your books at the Book Fair? Chances are I'll be doing volunteer work depending on what they need me for. It will be weird for me being there and not being "heavily" involved this time, but I'm hoping I get to really enjoy it and get more chances to talk to people :D Now looking forward to it even more!

  40. That's the plan :) Not selling my books - didn't know there was an opportunity for that since I'm not a presenter, but looking forward to being there :)

  41. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_ErikJune 1, 2014 at 12:14 PM

    Umm... Give Erik all of your chocolate? ;) Hmm... Have a mini-contest (for fun)? Maybe a video/written/oral ad for PPBF? Winner gets a PB? :)

  42. Vivian KirkfieldJune 1, 2014 at 12:21 PM

    Oh yay, Jarm...I am doing the WOW non fic pic challenge also...and taking Kristen's class this month...saw you at the webinar last to get going on my research as well. :)

  43. Vivian KirkfieldJune 1, 2014 at 12:27 PM

    And, for selfish reasons, I vote for continuing till June 13...Artie Bennett just asked me if I would review his new book, Peter Panda Melts Down! (he's the author of Poopendous and The Butt Book)...and I'd love to be able to add it to the PPBF link up. :) And I already have another brand new book slated for June 6.

  44. Melanie EllsworthJune 1, 2014 at 4:46 PM

    I'm so glad you recommended this book, Susanna. My daughter and I walked down to the river across from our house and brought this book with us. We read it sitting by the river - it was perfect. My daughter was especially pleased that it started with her favorite color - red - and ended there too. :) "Black tree bones in a pearled sky" perfectly captured the winter that seems to have finally ended in Maine.

  45. I'm good at helping kids feel braver! :)

  46. Duly noted :) And oh gosh! Artie is quite a character :) I've met him a couple times at book events around here :)

  47. Oh how lovely! I'm so glad you were able to enjoy it together in such a nice way! :)

  48. Boy! You really want to do a video! I shall have to think on it... which takes me time... time which I don't have!

  49. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_ErikJune 1, 2014 at 9:22 PM

    Okay you win... ;)

  50. Anytime you want to make a PPBF video feel free and I will give your the PB of your choice :)

  51. This_Kid_Reviews_Books_ErikJune 2, 2014 at 7:24 AM

    Deal ;)

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