Nia loves Alfie, her pet turtle. But he’s not very soft, he doesn’t do tricks, and he’s pretty quiet. Sometimes she forgets he’s even there! That is until the night before Nia’s seventh birthday, when Alfie disappears! Then, in an innovative switch in point of view, we hear Alfie’s side of the story. He didn’t leave Nia—he’s actually searching for the perfect birthday present for his dear friend. Can he find a gift and make it back in time for the big birthday party?
PRAISE FOR ALFIE
"With beautiful, expressive watercolor illustrations...Heder takes readers on a journey about what it means to be a child with a new pet who sometimes loses its luster but never its worthiness of love. A perfect companion for a young pet lover or pet owner-to-be." — Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Her watercolor spreads are carefully executed with few stylistic mannerisms; all the attention is directed toward the characters. It’s a treat watching Alfie deliver Nia the perfect birthday present." — Publishers Weekly
"Nia’s and Alfie’s first-person descriptive accounts are extended by lovely, intricately detailed ink-and-watercolor illustrations that artfully highlight the varying perspectives and amusing moments, as when Nia introduces Alfie to her toys...a charming story of the bond between child and pet." — Booklist
Sophie does not want to do her homework, a research report on polar bears. Bor-ing. They’re big. They eat things. They’re mean. What else is there to say about them anyway? As it turns out, plenty. And when a polar bear named Olafur swoops her away to the Arctic, she soon learns all about the playful bear’s habits and habitat—from glacier mice to the northern lights—and, despite her first reservations, she finds herself not just interested but excited about the Arctic. When the two are swept out to sea on an iceberg, Sophie’s new knowledge and knack for creative thinking pay off in a big way: she calls a whale to their aid! Inspired by her journey, she’s ready to return home and take another swing at her assignment, this time with gusto.
The Bear Report showcases the power of curiosity and imagination to fill any blank canvas, whether it’s an incomplete homework assignment or the Arctic ice.
PRAISE FOR THE BEAR REPORT
"Gorgeous to look at and a tummy tickler to read, this is a very fine book indeed." – Kirkus Reviews, starred review
It’s a great day to go to the zoo! As her family hustles to get out the door, Little T lags behind. She’s afraid to go back to the zoo; the only trouble is, she can’t remember why. As an ingenious solution to help her remember, her mom, dad, and sister construct homemade costumes and act out zoo animals—in alphabetical order, no less! The costumes and scenes grow increasingly elaborate and breathtakingly creative. An umbrella and bubble wrap magically transform into a jellyfish, bath towels and a can of soda become a parrot, and many, many more. At the end of the day, Little T has conquered her fear and no longer feels like a “fraidyzoo.” In this charming, witty picture book debut, Thyra Heder honors the bravery it takes to face your fears, and the loving people who help you do so.
2014 Texas 2x2 Reading Award List Notable Children's Books from ALSC 2014A
Junior Library Guild Selection
*"WARNING: Expect riotous buffoonery after reading this clever and original alphabet story, as kids will definitely want to “parrot” the examples." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
*"Debut talent Heder comes up with a wildly imaginative idea for an alphabet book/animal guessing game, elaborates it with smartly drafted ink-and-watercolor spreads, and seasons it with plenty of family warmth and hullaballoo." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Heder tells a child-relevant story about facing your fears with a light hand and zippy prose, but it’s her art that dials the zippiness up to 11, as her warm and humorously realistic figures gallivant alongside some remarkably envisioned handcrafted animal puppets." —Booklist
"Penny and Jelly are sure to warm the hearts of both future talent-show contestants and readers who have similarly close canine friends." —Kirkus Reviews
HMH Books For Young Readers, 2015
Penny & Jelly: Slumber Under the Stars
Written by Maria Gianferrari
“Following their introduction in The School Show (2015), Penny and Jelly face another crisis head-on, using their indelible friendship to solve a problem. … Another winning friendship tale from a lovable duo.” – Kirkus Reviews