Books & Reviews

Books by Dianna Hutts Aston

  A Beetle is Shy
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Sylvia Long
rock-is-lively_thumbnail A Rock is Lively
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Sylvia Long
A Butterfly Is Patient
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Sylvia Long
A Nest is Noisy, by Dianna Hutts Aston A Nest is Noisy
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Sylvia Long
A Seed Is Sleepy  A Seed Is Sleepy
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Sylvia Long
An Egg Is Quiet An Egg is Quiet
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Sylvia Long
Dream Something Big Dream Something Big
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Sylvia Long
 The Moon Over Star The Moon Over Star
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Jerry Pinkney
Loony Little Loony Little
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Kelly Murphy
 Mama's Wild Child Mama’s Wild Child/Papa’s Wild Child
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Nora Hilb
Mama Inside, Mama Outside  Mama Outside, Mama Inside
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Susan Gaber
 Not So Tall For Six  Not So Tall For Six
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Frank Dormer
When You Were Born  When You Were Born
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by E.B. Lewis
Bless This Mouse Bless This Mouse
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by John Butler
An Orange In January An Orange  in January
by Dianna Hutts Aston,
illustrated by Julie Mare
 

Books In Progress:

SOS: Messages of Love, Hope and Peace 
by Dianna Hutts Aston

Tears of a Warrior
by Dianna Hutts Aston

A Butterfly Is Patient

A Butterfly Is Patient by Dianna Hutts Aston

ABOUT THE BOOK
Grade Level: P and up
The creators of the award-winning An Egg Is Quiet and A Seed Is Sleepy have teamed up again to create this gorgeous and informative introduction to the world of butterflies. From iridescent blue swallowtails and brilliant orange monarchs to the worlds tiniest butterfly (Western Pygmy Blue) and the largest (Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing), an incredible variety of butterflies are celebrated here in all of their beauty and wonder. Perfect for a child’s bedroom bookshelf or for a classroom reading circle
REVIEWS
“Similar butterfly albums abound, but none show these most decorative members of the insect clan to better advantage.” – Kirkus Reviews
“A lovely mix of science and wonder” – Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
This lovely combination of elegant watercolors and lyrical text is both eye-catching and informative.” – School Library Journal, Starred Review
 NOTE: Lesson plans available at www.chroniclebooks.com

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Loony Little

Loony Little

ABOUT THE BOOK
Age Level: 5 and up | Grade Level: K and up | Illustrated by Kelly Murphy
Loony Little

“Quick, run for your life!” shouted Foxy Loxy. “The polar ice cap is melting!”
“How awful,” roared the Polar Bear Queen. “Tell me more—after dinner!”

Great top of the world! The polar icecap is melting!

Loony Little and her friends decide they must deliver this unfortunate news to the fearsome Polar Bear Queen—and find out how the melting icecap might affect them. But when sly Foxy Loxy volunteers to escort the animals to the queen’s lair, Loony soon realizes that not everyone seems to care about the fate of the Arctic and its creatures.

With a wry, simple story and luminous illustrations, Dianna Hutts Aston and Kelly Murphy provide a delightful twist on the traditional Chicken Little fable—and an important message about our environment.

REVIEWS
“Artfully weaves an issue of contemporary concern into a favorite traditional tale–and makes the frantic messengers rather more than the usual brainless dupes.” –  Kirkus Reviews
“A provocative take-off on the folktale “Chicken Little,” this book also includes helpful notes about the animals depicted in the story, as well as straightforward information (including websites) about global warming. Environmental topics are important for the next generation, so this thoughtful book deserves inclusion in every primary science program and can serve as a springboard into this complicated topic for upper grades as well.” – Esme Raji Codell, www.planetesme.com
“Bold acrylic and watercolor paintings add personality to the animals in this enjoyable revision (refutation, really) of Chicken Little’s “the sky is falling” folktale. Recommended.” – Horn Book Guide, Spring 2004
“Crisp animal drawings are set upon soft snowy scenes that glow with radiant colors. . . Sure to provoke a sense of wonder and some interesting discussion.” – Children’s Literature Choices (A national book award list that recognizes 150 children’s books of excellence chosen from among the 3000 children’s books that the newsletter reviewers received the previous year.)

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When You Were Born

When You Were Born, by Dianna Hutts Aston


ABOUT THE BOOK
IIllustrated by E.B. Lewis | Caligraphy by Judy the Sieck

With tender poetry and evocative paintings, this book captures the sense of reverence that will resonate with anyone who has gazed into the eyes of a newborn child.

REVIEWS

“Sure to have a huge audience.” – Kirkus Reviews

“Perfect for one-on-one sharing, this lovely book has a universality that gives it broad appeal. – School Library Journal

“With breathtaking paintings and a lilting, poetic text, Aston and Lewis present a book that sparkles with the beauty and grace of the subject it celebrates, a newborn child..” – Starred review, Publisher’s Weekly

“Aston’s simple poetry captures the joy and wonder of birth and the physical detail of the infant’s fragility and strength (“kissing your downy head . . . your curled fists”). Lewis’ full-page watercolor-and-marker paintings, worlds away from his usual realism, are exuberantly impressionistic in style, reminiscent of Matisse and the magic realism of Chagall.” – Booklist

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Mama’s Wild Child

Mama's Wild Child

ABOUT THE BOOK
Age Level: 5 and up | Grade Level: K and up | Illustrated by Nora Hilb
Mama’s Wild Child

“If I were your chimpanzee mama
and you were my chimp,
we would knuckle-walk in the jungle sun.
When the stars came out,
I would build us a sleeping platform
so we could rock-a-bye in the treetops,
listening to the lullaby of leaves.”

How do parents care for their children? Mama chimps cuddle their babies. Papa wolves play with their pups. And mama and papa ostriches take turns watching over their chicks.

Meet the mamas of the animal world—then flip this book over and meet the papas. Little wild ones will delight in discovering that human families and animal ones are not so different after all.

REVIEWS

“Meet the mamas of the animal world—then flip this book over and meet the papas—and discover that human families and animal ones are not so very different.This stands out… for its softly sweet illustrations and the factual information it presents.” – Kirkus Reviews
“In this Flip-me-over Book, a human mother and father each tell a child how various animals care for their young….The calm, sweet language is embellished by Nora Hilb’s illustrations done in ink and pencil on watercolor paper…The many features of this title work together quite nicely.” – School Library Journal

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Bless This Mouse

Bless This Mouse

 

ABOUT THE BOOK
Age Level: 5 and up | Illustrated by John Butler
Bless This Mouse 

“In the morning-time woods
where night creatures play,
Sits a sleepy-eyed mouse
with prayers to say,
A sleepy-eyed mouse,
quite small and gray—
Ready to dream the day away…”

As the sun slowly rises and its rays filter through the forest canopy, a sweet mouse settles down to sleep. Before closing his eyes, he offers a gentle prayer to acknowledge the leaves on the trees, the curious baby possum, the playful bear cub, and all the living things which make up his little nocturnal world.
Dianna Hutts Aston’s lilting morning lullaby is gracefully brought to life in John Butler’s lovingly-rendered.

REVIEWS

“A fuzzy, irresistible-looking hero is the main attraction in BLESS THIS MOUSE. With a text reminiscent of “All Creatures Great and Small,”… this velvety square volume leads readers through flower and fauna as mouse prepares to hunker down for the winter.” – Publisher’s Weekly

This book is sure to become a bedtime favorite.” – Washington Parent.com
I like the words you write.” – Ruby M., age 5

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Not So Tall For Six

Not So Tall For Six

ABOUT THE BOOK
Age Level: 5 and up | Grade Level: K and up | Illustrated by Frank Dormer
Not So Tall for Six

Kylie Bell comes from a long line of not-so-tall people, from her snake charmer Great-uncle Fergus “Fangs” Bell to her great-great-grandmother Beulah Bell, whose family motto is Brave and Smart and Big At Heart.

Kylie Bell may be the smallest one in her first-grade class, but when it comes to standing up to that mean ol’ bully-boy Rusty Jacks, her courage is monumental. Life isn’t easy when you can’t reach the water fountain, but Kylie Bell’s big heart and good manners prove that sometimes it takes the most courage to do what’s right.

“Ladybug,” Rusty Jacks snickers. “Fraidy-bug! Lady-lady-‘fraidy-bug!”

For one brief, shiny moment, Kylie Bell imagines him as a rhinoceros beetle, fearsomely creepy and shunned by all…and she almost calls him such. But a vision of Great-great-grandmother Beulah Bell, who kept hold of her good manners even when the cowpokes didn’t, pops into her mind.
Kylie Bell takes two ladylike, rhino-sized breaths and says…

The real-life Kylie Bell is Kelly S. who was once “small for six,” as she told the author in 2002. Kelly is now a five and a half-foot tall scholar studying aerospace engineering at an Oklahoma university. Rusty Jacks’ fate is unknown, although some say he moved to Madagascar and became an entomologist.

REVIEWS
“Coping with a bully, while remaining true to oneself, is the message of this tale. Purchase where additional books on bullying are needed.” – School Library Journal
“Will charm any and all comers. Caring, not cloying.” – Kirkus Reviews

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Mama Outside, Mama Inside

mama-inside-mama-outside

ABOUT THE BOOK
Age Level: 5 and up | Grade Level: K and up | Illustrated by Susan Gaber
 The babies are coming!

A soon-to-be mother has lots to do before the arrival of a baby—whether she’s a bird weaving a nest in a tree outside or a woman setting up a nursery inside her home. In the heartwarming picture book, Mama Outside and Mama Inside share a common love for their babies, as they sing, feed and care for these new lives.

REVIEWS
“Warm, expressive paintings make this picture book a joyful experience. This heartwarming look at families is irresistible.” – School Library Journal
“Soft, glowing acrylic art and gentle, simple prose establish parallels between two mothers-to-be–a bird (Mama Outside) and a human (Mama Inside)–both of whom are preparing for new babies….The parallels and the illustrations warmly convey motherly love and care (with some daddy participation) in both the human and the animal world.” – Booklist

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An Orange In January

ABOUT THE BOOK
Grade Level: P and up | Illustrated by Julie Maren
An Orange in January

“Carrying it home,
the child felt its roundness
and imagined himself a juggler,
a pitcher,
a fortune-teller who could see tomorrow.”

Who would guess this sparingly told journey of an orange from orchard to playground was based on a 30-second encounter with a homeless man holding a cardboard sign: Hungry. Homeless. Please help.

This social studies book tells the tale of an orange’s life journey—from spring blossom to bright, round fruit, from tree to truck to grocery store. And perhaps then, into the hands of a child, who takes it from its shelf in the produce section, saves it for school the next day, and then shares it with friends at recess. Oh, the sweetness of an orange in January!

REVIEWS
“This poetic tale about the path an orange takes to the store begins in a grove near the sea. When the fruit is ripe, “a hand, brown with seasons of sun, plucked it from its branch, while dew still glittered on the leaves.”… Even the youngest listeners will gain awareness that food doesn’t magically spring into being on the shelves of markets.” – School Library Journal
“With its rich economics lessons, this delightful story for young readers describes the path of an orange from its growth in an orchard to its final destination in the hands of a child….  These lessons about natural resources, interdependence, and markets are highlighted … ideal for teachers, parents, and volunteers who are seeking enjoyable children’s books for younger readers with substantive content in economics and social studies.” – Rutgers University of Arts and Sciences
 “Readers’ mouths will water in anticipation. A good springboard for discussing food’s origins for the youngest listeners.” – Kirkus Reviews
ACCOLADES
  • Selected by Scholastic Books for new curriculum

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A Nest Is Noisy

 

A Nest is Noisy, by Dianna Hutts Aston

ABOUT THE BOOK
Grade Level: P and up
From the award-winning creators of An Egg Is Quiet, A Seed Is Sleepy, A Butterfly Is Patient, and A Rock Is Lively comes this gorgeous and informative look at the fascinating world of nests. From tiny bee hummingbird nests to orangutan nests high in the rainforest canopy, an incredible variety of nests are showcased here in all their splendor. Poetic in voice and elegant in design, this carefully researched book introduces children to a captivating array of nest facts and will spark the imaginations of children whether in a classroom reading circle or on a parent’s lap.
REVIEWS
 “This beautiful picture book will be an asset to science collections.”– Booklist
 “Will inspire so many children to open their eyes and look up at the trees – and down at their feet – to spot nests of all kinds.”- Cool Mom Picks
 “Another beauty from Aston and Long. Eye-catching and eye-opening.” – School Library Journal, starred review
ACCOLADES

NOTE: Lesson plans available at www.chroniclebooks.com

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A Beetle Is Shy

A Butterfly is Patient by Dianna Hutts Aston

ABOUT THE BOOK
Grade Level: P and up
The award-winning duo of Dianna Hutts Aston and Sylvia Long team up again, this time creating a gorgeous look at the fascinating world of beetles. From flea beetles to bombardier beetles, an incredible variety of these beloved bugs are showcased here in all their splendor. Poetic in voice and elegant in design, this carefully researched and visually striking book is perfect for sparking children’s imaginations in both classroom reading circles and home libraries.
REVIEWS

“…a sparkling homage to a diverse category of insect.”—Publisher’s Weekly, starred review

“Children and adults will love this beautiful and fascinating book.”—School Library Journal

“This delightful book promotes a sense of wonder about a group of little creatures with whom we share this Earth.”—Science Magazine

“An informational book worthy of any science teacher’s library, Surely this one belongs in the hands of curious young people.” —Children’s Literature

ACCOLADES
Junior Library Guild selection

Finalist for the American Association for the Advancement of Science/Subaru award 2017

Bank Street Best Books of 2016, Ages 5 to 9

Parents’ Choice Silver Award

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