January 25, 2019
A Tail of Two Dogs
We have news for you! Remember we had some questions for Abhay and Nanditta of...
A little chokli, a stray puppy, wanders into a muddy rain puddle one day… From then on, he can’t stop himself from enjoying the icky, sticky, scratchy feeling! What he enjoys even more is telling tall tales about himself! With happy, whimsical illustrations, this small book about a big-talking dog celebrates smart and spunky choklis everywhere.
A gang of robbers is cutting and stealing sandalwood trees from the forest near Arun’s house. Worse, the guardian of the forest, fierce King Yaksha, seems to have lost his powers and can’t stop them. Something must be done… and quickly. A thrilling sequel to The Forbidden Forest that sees young Arun come to the rescue with a smart plan!
There are strange stories about the big forest at the edge of Arun’s house, and he has been told never to go there. But of course he MUST! So he slips away one day. It is like another world there, strange and beautiful. All is well until he breaks a “rule”… and has to face the fierce King Yaksha, spirit guardian of the forest, who gives him a very unusual punishment.
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Her diary (or is it her autobiography, she isn’t sure) becomes a rabbit hole and a roadmap to writing her way through life as she sees it. Older and bolder, the unstoppable ‘Mayilwriter’ rants in rhyme, ponders in verse, and doodles in between.
For every moment of clarity, there are others filled with anger, confusion and self-doubt. But Mayil keeps her chin up and decides that she will never put her pen down.
At 13 going on assertive 14, Mayil is now on her second diary after Mayil Will Not Be Quiet. “Teen queen,” says Ma. “Terrible teens,” says Pa. And yes, Mayil is perceptibly older, and wiser to a lot more things that make up teens. We see her as one of the Fake-inas Friend-ing a “cute” senior on Facebook, as a superpowered Liyam Lonewolf, a Cinderella tripping over her ghagra at Pumpkin VS’s party… and of course, as a further evolved Mayilwriter who wouldn’t mind rapping too, like the cool Kumari Misstake. But some things don’t change. As spirited now as when we saw her last, Mayil continues to pour her many thoughts out in this sequel as honestly, hilariously, thinkingly and touchingly as ever — on everything from sexual harassment, to caste distinctions (even in the Harry Potters!), to Saroja Paati in sleeveless and lipstick. This is another exceptional book from two talented young writers.
“Yes, Mayil writes about serious issues in her diary but she’s also irreverent and fun… Another great thing about the book is that it perfectly reflects the times and the geography it exists in. Mayil, and by extension the book, lives in and exudes Chennai and India. It doesn’t pretend to be anything else – the jokes, the references, the problems manage to be globally relatable while at the same time being inherently local… Pick up this book to add a tremendous dose of fun and irreverence into your reading list with a smattering of insight thrown in.” – Bookworm Etcetera
Once this book is closed
A challenge here is posed
To push beyond the boundaries
Observe and test surroundings
To care for bigger pictures
The letters and the figures
And if you always chase what’s true
The next great scientist may be you!
A is for Archimedes, B is for Bose, C is for Curie, and off we go… on an alphabetical journey from the past to the present, coming face-to-face with the wonders of scientific discovery and invention. In John Reilly’s lively verse, set to the rhythm of familiar rhymes, we meet 26 scientists who have changed our world. With jaunty illustrations by Anna-Maria Jung and intriguing biographical tidbits, the book sweeps across topics as diverse as genes, space travel, electricity and more.
Meet Mayil Ganeshan, 12 going on spirited 13, who finally has her chance to say all she wants. But the diary for her is also an important step towards becoming ‘Mayilwriter’, to make up for all the stories she hasn’t completed and the novel that didn’t know where it was going. So she begins. What she gives is a spontaneous, sensitive, honest, intimate and often hilarious peek into the life and mind of an insightful young girl. The Mayil that emerges is as lovable and recognisable as the delightful sketches she presents of her Amma, Appa, brother, grandfather and friends. Mayil has all the confusion and confidence of adolescence as she faces the everyday dilemmas of young people, as well as questions of gender stereotyping all around – from Ramayana stories to Rajnikanth movies. With enough to keep head, heart and funny bone tickled and happy, this is a must-read coming of age book by two highly talented young writers that will strike a chord with all who read it – pre-teen, teen and older.
“Mayil Will Not Be Quiet” is comfortingly real as it delicately brings out the problems and hopes of a pre-teen… At 12, going on 13, she fills her diary with doodles, hopes, rants and problems of a pre-teen, with doses of humour that leave you nostalgic. After all, we’ve all written them in our diaries too… – The Hindu
The acceptance speech by co-author Sowmya Rajendran on receipt of the 2015 Bal Sahitya Puraskar!
Most of the time Selvi’s little village of peanut farmers lies forgotten. But once a year it springs to life – when the archaeologists come to excavate tools of prehistoric ancestors from the same river-bed that Selvi now walks over every day. These ancestors were hominins of the Lower Paleolithic Acheulian culture who lived more than half a million years ago, and their stone tools are what the villagers call chakka kal, meaning ‘shining stones’. Superimposing facts and photographs from an excavation site in Tamilnadu with perky illustrations and imagined stories, the archaeologist-author brings to life a very, very distant past and initiates young children into the fascinating world of archaeology. The main narrative is complemented with snippets of information in child friendly doses, with pages designed to be visually attractive. A timeline of major hominin species from around four million years ago to the present takes children on a quick march through evolution. A perfect supplement to classroom history lessons.
“This book has lot of photographs from the actual excavation site and Ashok Rajagopalan has provided a few simple but striking illustrations to supplement the story. The last page with the drawings of the various tools of an archaeologist, is very pleasing to the eye. This kind of book would be perfect for a child to get interested in archaeology and feel inspired to know more on the subject.” – SaffronTree
What could Caesar’s general have in common with multiplication and weights? Or a Russian waiter with factorials? Or a temple in Hanoi with transposition? A Chinese emperor with Benjamin Franklin and Albrecht Duerer? This book is a collection of stories from different countries. Each story sets the brain ticking, encouraging problem-solving skills, with a high quotient of fun! And each is followed by a simple explanation of the maths behind the ‘magic’, that dispels the esoteric haze from the subject and makes it accessible. A fascinating collection about mathematics and the world, from a country that has been prominent on the number map from ancient times.
“T. V. Padma’s love for mathematics and history comes out through the book. Although the book is about stories related to mathematics, after every story, there are a few pages of information on the concept dealt in the story and history related to that concept. The history and mathematics makes it a very interesting combination and in my opinion is what makes this book stand out. I am glad that T. V. Padma includes some interesting nuggets of information after every story. This almost makes the book a handy guide for mathematics teachers to introduce a concept and explain the history and significance of the concept. Proiti Roy’s illustrations are lovely. I especially loved the black and white stick figures that play around numbers and the mathematical symbols.” Saffron Tree
How was everyday life for children long ago? Did they have pets? Did foreign students feel homesick? What was it like to go shopping in a big city? What sort of games did they play? In this book, imagination takes off from carefully researched fact to create ten fascinating stories of children from times past, spanning India’s history from around 3500 bce onward. Alongside are bits of interesting information — easy to absorb, just enough for added atmosphere. Finely etched pictures come together in collages to illustrate each story. A perky ant leads the trail through a very visual activity section that makes tracking history so much fun!
“Padma T Venkatraman makes history fascinating in this wonderful compilation of tales set in historical settings. Her stories mesmerize and gives a brief glimpse of a historical period. A glimpse brief enough to entice one to find out more about that particular era. She also provides some interesting tidbits along with the story which provides enough information for an eager one to explore further or a teacher to use it as a study reference.” – Saffron Tree
Stone Eggs is a one of a kind book about Indian dinosaurs! Combining fact and fiction, it shows that dinosaurs didn’t roam only in other, faraway places. They were very much part of the Indian landscape – millions of years ago. Join Sankar and Sandhya on their adventure as they find out about Indosuchus matleyi, Indosuchus raptorius, Rajasaurus narmadiensis and much much more. There is also a map of dino finds in India and a timeline of Indian dinos.
“The book not only lists the species found in India, including some indigenous ones such as, the Rajasaurus Narmadensis, but also has a map showing the various locations of the digs. Clear lucid illustrations of perky dinos strutting the ramp with their name tags, juggling, fighting, pooping add to the charm of this book. Bonus features are a map indicating the dino finds in India and a timeline of Indian dinos. Entertaining as well as educative, this book will also be a great asset to a school library.” – Young India Books
Are there really diamonds hidden in Bhedaghat? Does little Sibsa’s magic carpet fly her out of Tawang? What happens when crocodiles chase Kanmani and gang during a boat ride in the Andamans? And what on earth is Raja the donkey doing in Ramoji Film City? Did you know the world’s highest international cricket stadium is in Himachal? That only Goa has motorcycle taxis? Or that dinosaurs roamed Gujarat 65 million years ago? Stories and fascinating facts take you on a double-decker ride across 15 states of India. They emerge distinct and different, like pieces of a jigsaw, which slide in together to create a magnificent whole. India!
“‘Little Indians’ explores the many little Indias within this country, in a way that is sure to appeal to little Indians. Simple stories with an old-world charm, that give the flavor of a place. I found it refreshing to read stories in which the child protagonists are not the urban characters we usually encounter. In each of the stories, a bunch of kids with no resources to speak of bar their wits, solve a problem. The setting comes alive, whether it is Kille Raigad in Maharashtra, or the home of a weaver in a village in Tawang valley, Arunachal Pradesh. I liked how the stories weave in details that reveal a bit about the place and its people; like the one about bakeries and baguettes in Puducherry.” – Saffron Tree
“Every time Vismay came home, he expected to find some kind of disaster. He had seen on YouTube how other people recorded their dogs doing nothing but sleep for hours. That wasn’t Cody.”
It all begins when Vismay falls in love with a twice abandoned puppy in a San Francisco animal shelter. He brings him home, except he has no clue about how to raise this adorable, crazy pit bull-pointer he calls Cody. As his life is taken over by a hyperactive ball of energy, there is also lurking danger when Cody’s curiosity leads him to buried treasure!
Get ready for an action packed ride of adventures and misadventures, as Vismay and Cody make a home and the headlines in this story inspired by true events.
In the early 20th century, after making pathbreaking innovations in wireless communication, pioneering scientist Jagadish Chandra Bose (J.C. Bose) turned to the world of plants. Merging the boundaries of biology and physics, he became a forerunner of biophysics, inventing ingenious instruments to study plant intelligence. His research remains radical even today, more than 150 years after his birth. In this first-of-its-kind comic book, the maverick scientist’s journey is imagined through the eyes of Mimosa Pudica — the ‘touch-me-not’ plant he used extensively in his research. Extracts from a well-known speech and an entry from Bose’s own journal offer a direct glimpse into a fascinating mind. A crisp timeline gives an overview of his life, while humorous asides and quick facts pack in a punch.
“Since a great deal of Sir Bose’s life dealt with the physiology of plants, the author, Swati Shome and illustrator Anushree Bhat, have taken the interesting route of making Jagadish have a running conversation with a “Mimosa Pudica” – a touch-me-not plant. They also have a couple of birds show up from time to time during the narration in order to provide comic relief. These characters stay with Jagadish as he proceeds through childhood and adolescence into a promising career in the West in the Physical Sciences. When, after completing his education, the young Jagadish comes back to India and accepts a position at Presidency College in Kolkata, the author attempts to explain scientific concepts to the reader as simply as possible. This lightness in the narrative is one of the strong points of this book.” – Goodbooks.in
The ‘arribada’ or arrival of thousands of olive ridley sea turtles for mass nesting on some beaches of Orissa is one of nature’s amazing spectacles. Yet thousands of these gentle reptiles die every year due to callous fishing practices and human apathy. Through unique photographs, ridley facts, and a narrative born out of firsthand experience, award-winning wildlife film-maker Shekar Dattatri makes an impassioned plea to keep the beaches safe and free for the olive ridley.
Who was this man who so mesmerised the world, born almost a century ago but whose words and wisdom are still so current, so compelling? Films, plays, books, media images and news stories bring him regularly into our homes. The UN has declared his birthday, 2nd October, the International Day for Non-Violence. But how do we make his life relevant to a child of today? How do we tell his inspiring story so that he isn’t just part of a history lesson? PICTURE GANDHI does this by heading off the beaten track and following Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi himself, in spirit as much as chronology. The author views him with affection, but sparely, guided by what he himself valued most – truth and love – and what was important to him. Visually, too, the book enhances this perspective. Thought bubbles paraphrase Gandhi’s words and peep into his mind. Colourful hand-done elements add interesting extensions to old black and white photographs. PICTURE GANDHI attempts to shake off the aura and offer a close and intimate glimpse of a man of our times, a man for all times.
“Before I used to stitch just to make patterns. But now I think about what I want to say through my stitches,” says Raniben. Like her friend Meghiben and many others, she has moved beyond just beautiful needlework to narrative art, embroidering her own thoughts and stories. Stitching Stories is one such story – about how she and her family left their village in Pakistan, crossing the harsh desert to live in a refugee camp in Gujarat, how they rebuilt their lives, lost everything again in an earthquake, and began once more. The book is based on the award-winning animated documentary film Tanko Bole Chhe (The Stitches Speak), an exquisite visual narrative through applique and embroidery that looks at how an inherited craft has become personalised art.
“A book that is powerful and yet an effective story of women who have learnt to adapt to earth-shaking events in their lives – having been displaced, time and again, from their homes. A book that is about sharing, cooperation, and learning to live in harmony with each other. A book that is an engaging introduction to art and the artist through story, memoir and biography. A book that makes its statement clearly and simply, both in words and pictures, having text that is beautifully balanced in narrative style embroidery.” – Young India Books
My Gandhi Scrapbook is just that – a scrapbook. It has pictures cut and pasted. comments thrown in, something copied from somewhere, random thoughts, quibbles and scribbles…Like a very visual, personal diary. Or a kaleidoscope, where bits and pieces come together to form patterns – especially fascinating when the subject is Gandhiji. The exciting format offers unusual perspectives on a most amazing man, while the headings tell their own zany story. Did you know that Gandhi loved comics? That he would make ‘pudding’ with powdered chapatis? Now these are some quirky bits that aren’t in the book. Add them in, or anything else you like – for in the spirit of scrapbooks, this too is incomplete, with empty pages and spaces waiting for you!
“An admirable compilation of currency, stamps, cartoons, magazine covers, hoardings, letters by Gandhi and interesting trivia are pasted in the scrapbook. There are pictures of streets named after and statues of Gandhi spread all over the world. Few empty pages attached to the book for children to add to the collection as well as an invitation to every reader from Sandhya Rao to share their discoveries on Gandhi with her.” – Young India Books
Published to coincide with the London Olympic Games, 2012, it is the first comprehensive book for young readers that draw attention to the place and achievements of Indian athletes in what is the most spectacular sporting event in the world. The first half of the book provides a brief history of the Games and the movement from ancient times down to the modern era. An important feature is the inclusion of the Paralympic Games as well as traditional Indian Games. This section is bolstered with interesting anecdotes and items of information, it also features some unforgettably funny cartoons, well-organised timelines, and relevant news reports. In the second section, the Olympic and Paralympic values of excellence, friendship, respect, courage, determination, equality and inspiration are illustrated through stories from the lives of individual sports personalities.
“The humorous cartoons and the mind boggling facts presented in boxes, give a perfect balance in terms of the information presented to the reader. Slowly from the global angle, the book moves into the involvement of various Indians at the Olympics. The book also has extensive details on Paralympics and the Indians who have represented in these games. Needless to say, every achievement speaks of the human will to conquer the impossible.” – Saffron Tree