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The Amazing Erik Author Mike Huber Illustrator Joseph Cowman ISBN: 978-1-60554-209-6 $15.95 Sometimes when children are sad, it can be difficult for them to imagine ever feeling happy again. This uplifting story provides a helpful reminder to children that sadness is a temporary feeling. “Lessons in dealing with sadness and offering compassion dominate this picture book. Erik is playing at the water table, acting like a magician as he mixes blue and yellow water to make green. When his sleeves get wet, he becomes upset, and feeling overwhelmed by his emotions, he starts to think about other things that make him sad—namely, balloons popping and scary dreams. Bereft, he shows his teacher, Regina, his sodden sleeve, and in this image readers first see that he uses a wheelchair. Regina validates Erik’s sadness and offers to get him a new shirt, but as she walks away, he notices that his shoe is wet, too, and this causes further distress. Then a little girl named Rita comes to help him clean up the water on the floor, in the process helping him feel better. Their play transforms the splashed water into a source of fun, and it also affords Erik the opportunity to slide himself out of his chair to the floor. This everyday grappling with emotions is enriched by the matter-of-fact diversity of the characters.” —Kirkus Reviews Bree Finds a Friend “An interest in worms and digging in the dirt helps a little girl make a friend at school. Author Mike Huber Illustrator Joseph Cowman As the book opens, a multicultural cast of children pairs off to enjoy various playground activities. After seeing three such pairings, it’s notable that African-American Bree is “playing by herself.” She digs in the dirt until she finds a worm, and at first glance, it seems that this is the friend mentioned in the title…Instead, another, older, Caucasian girl hiding behind a nearby tree observes Bree playing with the worm and approaches her to play, too…The children bond while playing in the dirt, unearthing other worms to make up a family and collecting them all in a bucket. When playtime is over, the girls go hand in hand into the school, with plans to return to their play later…an inclusive depiction of children at play.” —Kirkus Reviews ISBN: 978-1-60554-211-9 $15.95 Bree is digging for worms, but she unearths something even better than she expected—a new friend! This story shows how young children can discover friendship through common interests. Rita and the Firefighters All in One Day Evette’s Invitation Mama’s Gloves Author Mike Huber Illustrator Joseph Cowman Author Mike Huber Illustrator Joseph Cowman Author Mike Huber Illustrator Joseph Cowman Author Mike Huber Illustrator Joseph Cowman ISBN: 9781-60554-208-9 $15.95 ISBN: 978-1-60554-207-2 $15.95 ISBN: 978-1-60554-212-6 $15.95 ISBN: 978-1-60554-210-2 $15.95 The firefighters are busy saving the day. How can Rita join in and play? This story chronicles the challenges one child experiences as she tries to enter the play of others. Follow along as an ordinary day in Mr. Walter’s classroom turns into something unexpected. This story showcases the routine of the day in one group-care setting. Snacktime is a great time for Evette and her classmates to discuss something very exciting—her birthday! This story captures the rich, spontaneous, and oftentimes quirky conversations that young children bring to the table. Being apart from his mama can be hard, but something unexpected helps Esteban remember that she always comes back. This sweet story shows one child’s experience with separation anxiety and his recovery from it. ABOUT THE AUTHOR ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR Mike Huber is an early childhood educator and a member of the National Association for the Education of Young Children. He also writes stories, music, and puppet shows for children. Mike lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with his wife and daughter. His blog, Tales from the Penguin Room, delves into his experiences teaching young children. Joseph Cowman lives and paints in the hills and valleys of suburban Idaho. He spends his free time exploring and enjoys visiting schools and giving students illustration lessons. He is a longstanding member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and is the illustrator of one of the newest Redleaf Lane titles, Noah Chases the Wind . 7