Brave Charlotte

by Anu Stohner
illustrated by Henrike Wilson

Brave Charlotte reminds, teaches and inspires readers to celebrate who you are and not worry about fitting in with the group. It's a spirited tale of one little sheep's adventuresome personality and how the rest of the flock are weary of her individuality until she proves her spunk is something to be celebrated and not scorned. This is a tough lesson for both kids and adults to remember as we navigate through friendships but Charlotte show us it is a lesson worth learning. 

You Might Also Enjoy: Brave Charlotte and the Wolves

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Millie Waits for the Mail

by Alexander Steffensmeier

Now that spring has officially arrived, a trip to the farm seems like the perfect way to brighten any day. Join us this week as we visit Millie the cow, her friends the chickens, the farmer, and their mailman for a hilarious adventure in the country. Be sure to spend lots of time exploring the pages as you will not want to miss any of the comical detail Alexander Steffensmieier includes on each and every page. They are guaranteed to have you and your young reader giggling out loud. Millie Waits for the Mail is tremendous fun with a great sense of humor and appeals to readers of all ages who still get excited to receive and surprise in the mail.

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The Perfect Nest

by Catherine Friend
illustrated by John Manders

Where to start with what made us fall in love with The Perfect Nest? First of all, it is fun and silly, but never talks down to its readers it is filled with hijinks and plotting, but also caring and friendship. You will smile, you will laugh, and you will be touched by its final sweet message. The Perfect Nest is rolicking barnyard adventure that shows us what happens when an omelet-craving cat tries to outsmart a chicken, a duck, and a goose, and winds up with more than he bargained for. 

Bonus: Get a behind-the-scenes look at how illustrator John Manders created the pictures for the Perfect Nest. Then, check out his Etsy shop!


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Apple Farmer Annie


Dear Friends, 

Welcome back to Off the Shelf! We are back after some time off to refocus, redesign our site, and discover some new treasures in the world of children's literature. We are also changing the format and schedule of our posts: Each Wednesday, we will publish all content for the book of the week. We feel that this will be a simpler way to present our content and inspire you and your young readers to discover and enjoy these great books.

Autumn is our favorite time of year, the time of fresh starts with a new school year and the shift in seasons. It is truly the season for the senses: the smell, sound, and color of rustling leaves, the aroma of spices wafting from the kitchen, and the delicious taste of apple and pumpkin in everything from soup and salads to pies and parfaits. Autumn also brings us a wealth of wonderful books to enjoy and spark imaginations. So come join us with the first of our fall book pick for this year!


Apple Farmer Annie

by Monica Wellington

Nothing says autumn like crisp, juicy apples and we have discovered a fun, little book that celebrates all things apples. Apple Farmer Annie is a charming and cheery book fill with bright primary colors, simple shapes and detailed pages that are fun to explore over and over again to discover something new.

Apple Farmer Annie 1

Set on Annie’s apple farm, readers have the fun of following Annie through her chores of harvesting, sorting, and counting apples; making delicious treats with her apples (recipes included); and heading off to market to sell her produce.

Apple Farmer Annie 2

Apple Farmer Annie 3

Monica Wellington has written a book that is both educational and entertaining and inspires young minds to think beyond apples as a simple fruit, to explore the many varieties, think about where they come from, and the many foods that can be made with them. Apple Farmer Annie is a wonderful addition to any fall reading list.


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Big Red Barn

by Margaret Wise Brown
Illustrated by Felicia Bond

Enjoy a trip to the farm and obverse the play of a barnyard full of gentle animals while the farm family is away. The cadences of the rhythmic, rhyming text by Margaret Wise Brown perfectly celebrate the joy of the animals during a beautiful day and peaceful night on the farm. Illustrations by Felicia Bond convey the simplicity, fun, and peace of the animals’ delightful day. This is truly a classic to be enjoyed by all ages.

In this Issue

  • Paper Bag Barn and Play Mat
  • On the Farm Cornmeal Pancakes
  • Carrot-Apple Salad with Feta Dressing


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Click Clack Moo: Cows That Type

by Doreen Cronin
Illustrated by Betsy Lewin

A perfect tale for an early lesson in how to negotiate, Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type gets better every time you read it.  Much to Farmer Brown’s dismay, his cows find a typewriter and quickly discover the power of the written word. To add to the shenanigans in the barnyard, Duck must step in and mediate when Farmer Brown refuses to meet the bovine demands and the cows go on strike.  

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Illustrations by Betsy Lewin add to the charming story Doreen Cronin wrote that gives power to the animals and leaves Farmer Brown wondering what will happen next on his farm!

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