Picture Book Review: Mama’s Purse, by A.J. Irving and Rick Thomson (Illustrations)


Mama’s Purse, by A.J. Irving and Rick Thomson (Illustrations)
WHAT’S IN MY MAMA’S PURSE? Much more than bandages and bananas! You won’t believe your eyes because so much fun hides in my mama’s purse. From a yellow moose and a caboose made of juice to a trout and numbers to count, Mama’s purse is full of super silly surprises. You’ll never guess what zooms out next!

Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: AJ’s Children’s Books LLC (October 1, 2012)

My Thoughts:
The rhyming text in this book is engaging and fairly well written.  There are not many places that caused me to stumble over the words.  My children enjoyed the story and all the funny things found inside mama’s purse.  The idea is unique and fun.

The illustrations are okay.  I feel like they don’t go well with the writing, though.  Matching illustrations and writing is a tricky thing, and I feel like in this case, they just didn’t match up well enough.

About the Author:

I spent my childhood in Boise, Idaho, catching grasshoppers and writing stories. My biggest dream in the whole world was to be a writer. My first published work, a poem about my mom, appeared in Writing Without Walls when I was in elementary school. My mom still has a framed copy of the poem in the living room.

In junior high school, I played sports and wrote for the school newspaper. When I grew up, I wanted to move to the Big Apple and write for the New York Times. So my grandpa and I took a trip back east to meet the New York Times Sports Editor. I shook his hand and told him I would be back in ten years for a job.

My determination to be a writer continued in high school when I contributed to my school newspaper as a photographer, reporter, and editor. My mom is so proud of all the newspaper awards that I won in high school . . . they are still on display in my old bedroom.

I decided New York City was too far away from my family, so I enrolled in the School of Journalism at the University of Oregon. My desire for a more creative writing style led me to consider a different path: magazine writing. After I graduated, my first magazine article was published in Midwifery Today.

I received a B.A. in Journalism and Women’s Studies from the University of Oregon. My entire family was very excited when I earned membership into Kappa Tau Alpha─a college honor society that recognizes academic excellence and promotes scholarship in journalism and mass communication.

In 2008, my husband and I started a family. I put down my pen and focused on reading books to our son. The excitement in his eyes inspired me to start writing children’s books. Now I can’t stop. When I’m not writing, I enjoy catching grasshoppers with my husband, Ian, and our son, Mason, in our big back yard in Idaho.

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