#1024 – Leonard’s Beard by Nancy Cote

leonards-beard-9781510707962 Leonard’s Beard
Written and Illustrated by Nancy Cote
Sky Pony Press  11/22/2016
978-1-5107-0796-4
32 pages   Ages 4—8

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“All work and no play is
no good for anyone.

“Leonard writes wonderful stories, and his mind is always buzzing with ideas.

“But soon he spends so much time writing that he forgets about things like his friends, and when to shave. Leonard’s beard gets bigger and bigger by the day, he can almost wear all the mens beard styles. And that’s when a big storm blows in.

“Before he knows it, all sorts of crazy things have flown into Leonard’s beard: a bird’s nest, a frying pan. This won’t do! It’s time for Leonard to make changes, and have some FUN.” [INSIDE JACKET]

Review
Leonard is a writer with many wonderful stories to tell. He writes and he writes, and then writes even more. Leonard’s story ideas float around in his head and consume him. Day after day Leonard does the same thing. He writes. He no longer sees his friends or family. Real adventures don’t happen anymore. Leonard also neglects to notice his beard, growing and growing, long and wide. Leonard concentrates on his story ideas and his writing to the exclusion of everything else—including the brewing storm.
spread-1When the windows shake, the floors shake, and the door shakes right off his house Leonard rushes outside to see the commotion. Before he can do anything about it, all manner of items blow into Leonard’s beard. A duck, a wedge of cheese, some peas, a sausage, and a frying pan. A mouse and a bird in a nest both squeak at the light when they pop out of the Leonard’s beard. It’s all a terrible mess. Leonard did the only thing he could do . . . and it changes his life.

Nancy Cote’s (Dixie Wants an Allergy by Tori Corn (read about it here), Watch the Birdie! (read about it here) Leonard’s Beard will speak to everyone whose life is consumed by one interest to the exclusion of all others. Everything, including the people in his life, takes a backseat to his writing. When a vicious storm rams your home and you don’t take notice, you are too consumed by whatever you are doing. Pray you don’t have a bushy beard or long, clingy hair. You will end up eye-to-eye with a mouse, find a bird nest—with bird—and possibly a cello stuck inside all that hair.
spread-2Leonard’s story is a cautionary tale. It tells us to keep family and friends in our lives, go out of our homes and have adventures, and live our lives as if it is our last day, then go home and write (or whatever it is you do). Kids and parents will find Leonard’s Beard entertaining. Young children will especially find all those objects blown into Leonard’s beard funny. The illustrations are colorful with small details waiting for observant eyes to discover.

Ironically, Leonard started one of his stories with the sentence. “One very windy day . . .” It is still in his typewriter, so it could be a rather old beginning. Ticket stubs, from what might have been his last adventure, rest on his desk. Leonard’s Beard will speak to writers, but others can take away the redeeming message of living life to the fullest. Balance no longer existed in Leonard’s life. For Leonard and his beard, he needs to work to live, instead of living to work. Many of us need to do the same.
spread-3Leonard’s Beard is beautifully illustrated, lighthearted fun for both kids and adults.

LEONARD’S BEARD. Text and illustrations copyright © 2016 by Nancy Cote. Reproduced by permission of the publisher,Sky Pony Press, New York, NY.

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Add Leonard’s Beard to Your Goodreads Shelf HERE.

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Reprinted with permission from LEONARD’S BEARD © 2016 by Nancy Cote, Sky Pony Press, an imprint of Skyhorse Publishing. Illustrations © 2016 by Nancy Cote.

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Copyright © 2016 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved

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Leonard’s Beard
Written and Illustrated by Nancy Cote
Sky Pony Press 11/22/2016
9781510707964

4 thoughts on “#1024 – Leonard’s Beard by Nancy Cote

  1. There are days when I probably look much worse than Leonard–especially during rewrites! 🙂 I’m looking forward to reading Nancy’s newest book. I’m a HUGE fan of Nancy’s work. Wonderful review, Sue!

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