Bear’s Weekly Book Haul: August 24th, 2018

Bear's book haulWell, here we are, end of summer.  I start back up at work on Monday (more on that later, I’m sure), and after Labor Day, out library resumes it’s regular hours.  We’ll probably retain our Wednesday schedule when it comes to taking out books, but with the library resuming it’s weekend hours, that opens up the possibility of being able to take Bear to other programming – our library has some nice story time, read-aloud, and craft programming for younger kids, so that’ll be nice.

Ugh. there’s a lot of things I’m looking forward to about fall.  But that’s literally another blog post.

Anyway, last week’s clear winner was undeniably Poor Louie, by Tony Fucile.

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Tony Fucile has spent a great deal of his professional career in animation, including work on The Iron Giant and The Incredibles, which I think is really obvious in the style of this book (more Iron Giant than Incredibles, honestly).  The drawings were adorable, and it was a sweet take on a story trope that’s been done before (big sibling – fur sibling, in this case – feels displaced and lonely with the impending birth of the younger sibling).  Bear is very, very firmly an only child, but I bet this would be a nice book to read to older-siblings-to-be.  Bear really enjoyed how evocative and emotive Louie was, and loved giggling at his faces while he walked in the rain as was “tortured” by babies.  And, of course, he loved yelling “POOR LOUIE!” every couple of pages.

This week’s batch was chosen by Bear’s dad.

Morris Mole, by Dan Yaccarino:  “Meet Morris Mole—he has always been a little bit different. When the moles are running low on food, it’s up to clever Morris to save the day. With a little help from an unexpected friend and a lot of digging, Morris learns that even the smallest creatures can do big things.”

Come to the Fairies Ball, by Jane Yolen:  “All the fairies are excited to be invited to the King’s ball, except for one young fairy whose only party dress is in tatters, but some wise words from the resident ants help her be all she can be.”

Any Questions?, by Marie-Louise Gay:  “Many children want to know where stories come from and how a book is made. Marie-Louise Gay’s new picture book provides them with some delightfully inspiring answers through a fictional encounter between an author and some very curious children — together they collaborate on writing and illustrating a story.”

The Only Child, by Guojing:  “A little girl—lost and alone—follows a mysterious stag deep into the woods, and, like Alice down the rabbit hole, she finds herself in a strange and wondrous world. But… home and family are very far away. How will she get back there?”

Drawn Together, by Mihn Le:  “When a young boy visits his grandfather, their lack of a common language leads to confusion, frustration, and silence. But as they sit down to draw together, something magical happens-with a shared love of art and storytelling, the two form a bond that goes beyond words.”

That’s all for this week.  As always, if you have an recomendations for books for us to read together – or emerging reader books that Bear can start looking at on his own – leave it down in the comments!

Bear’s Weekly Book Haul: June 14th, 2018

Bear's book haulSo, last week we brought home a five-book haul that Bear’s dad had picked, which meant that this week, it was mom’s turn!

I love perusing the children’s section, flipping through the glossy pages, carefully selecting books based on their gorgeous illustrations, or easy readability (Bear is already sounding out words on the page), or because I think they’ll teach Bear a lesson or make him laugh out loud.  I think I got a nice selection of books this time that tick off a lot of the aforementioned boxes, but before we get to this week’s books, let’s talk about last week.

There’s usually a clear favorite among the books we pick out, both for Bear and for us.  This week, the clear winner for Bear was…

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We picked this book out specifically because Bear had so loved some of Black’s other books, particularly I’m Bored and I’m Sad, and it certainly did not disappoint.  The book is cute and simple and told from the point of view of a child not much older than Bear, and speaks to a subject near and dear to Bear’s heart – namely being naked.  And wearing capes.  And eating cookies.  And – oh man, living the freakin’ dream here – doing all three at the same time.  Truly, this book is the embodiment of pre-school hedonism.

On the flip side – and this is something that almost never happens – we had a definite low point in the last haul as well.

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In the middle of reading Smokey to our son, my husband let out an audible groan.  There are several pages in the middle of this book in which “Indians” misinterpret Smokey’s smoke signals, and there is a pretty offensive and out-dated portrayal of Native-Americans as violent and unintelligent.  Given the book was written in the 60s, this isn’t shocking (it’s pretty on par for the era it was written in), but not something we want to read to our son in 2018.  The rest of the story was pretty harmless, and we simply skipped over the offensive section (though we did bring it up with the children’s librarian, though).

Now, for this week’s haul!

  • Tobor, by Guido van Genechten [Amazon | GoodReads]
    GoodReads summary:  “Ben receives a very special present for his fifth birthday. Unlike Ben’s stuffed animals who can’t move on their own or talk, Tobor is different; with a press of his square nose, Tobor comes alive, suggesting and playing games, talking and asking questions and soon he becomes Ben’s best friend. Sometimes friendship develops where you least expect it.”
  • A Very Big Bunny, by Marisabina Russo [Amazon | GoodReads]
    GoodReads summary:  “AMELIA IS A VERY BIG BUNNY. At recess, the other bunnies tell her that her feet are too long for hopscotch, they say she’s too tall to jump rope, and of course, no one will get on the seesaw with her. Amelia is a very big and lonely bunny. But when a new very small bunny named Susannah arrives in the classroom, something amazing happens.”
  • There’s a Monster in Your Book, by Tom Fletcher [Amazon | GoodReads]
    GoodReads summary: “Bestselling author of The Christmasuarus, Tom Fletcher, has Gwritten a brand new picture book perfect for bedtime, where a mischievous monster has invaded the pages of your child’s book!  This read-aloud, interactive picture book treat invites children to make magic happen page by page, tilting, spinning and shaking the book, and then seeing the funny results when each page is turned. A fantastic celebration of all the fun that can be had with a book, with a wonderful wind-down bedtime ending!”
  • A Family is a Family is a Family, by Sara O’Leary [Amazon | GoodReads]
    GoodReads summary:  “When a teacher asks the children in her class to think about what makes their families special, the answers are all different in many ways — but the same in the one way that matters most of all.  One child is worried that her family is just too different to explain, but listens as her classmates talk about what makes their families special. One is raised by a grandmother, and another has two dads. One is full of stepsiblings, and another has a new baby.  As one by one, her classmates describe who they live with and who loves them — family of every shape, size and every kind of relation — the child realizes that as long as her family is full of caring people, her family is special.”
  • I’m New Here, by Anne Sibley O’Brien  [Amazon | GoodReads]
    GoodReads summary: “Maria is from Guatemala, Jin is from Korea, and Fatima is from Somalia. All three are new to their American elementary school, and each has trouble speaking, writing, and sharing ideas in English. Through self-determination and with encouragement from their peers and teachers, the students learn to feel confident and comfortable in their new school without losing a sense of their home country, language, and identity.”

That’s all for this week!  If you have any recs for great books for pre-schoolers, please comment and let me know!