Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Great Gracie Chase: Stop That Dog! by Cynthia Rylant and Mark Teague

Mark Teague is one of my favorite children's book illustrators, and Cynthia Rylant is one of my favorite authors, so for me there is nothing not to like about this book! Together they have created, The Great Gracie Chase: Stop That Dog! This book is not new, but it is one that I find myself coming back to, with no complaints from the kids. There is something about Teague's charming little houses that always make me linger a little longer, and this dog, Gracie, well she is something pretty special too.

Gracie, a typically well-behaved dog, is taken out of her comfort zone, and takes the town for a wild goose chase that is sure to make you smile. Then, reminiscent of a disobedient child that stops getting the attention he's looking for, when Gracie is sure no one is still looking, she decides to head home after all. For dog-lovers, typically obedient children, and picture-studiers, this book is a good choice.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

If I Built a Car by Chris Van Dusen

If there is a book for a boy who likes gadgets and gizmos, this is it. As if his dad's cute car isn't enough, the little boy in this book studies out and creates his own fantastical car. Inside this car you can snack or swim, and not only that but it smells great too. The rhyming verse the author uses adds to the fun, and happily this is the kind of book kids will want to read over and over, as both the pictures and story are brimming with imaginative detail. Although my daughter loves this book too, I feel confident it's a book that especially any little boy could love.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Ella Sarah Gets Dressed by Margaret Chavos-Irvine

Have you noticed how girls clothes can be a little tricky to put together? Unlike boys clothes, which all seem to match each other, girls clothes all seem to need to be kept with their matching pieces. Pants can be pink and polka-dotted, socks can be blue and purple striped, and dresses can have orange and green flowers. Should you really put those together?

My daughter has a strong will, and also a strong opinion about what she wears. She also believes if mom picks it out, it is not a good choice. To my dismay, other little girls walk around wearing matching clothes, and I wonder how their mothers talked them into it.

Ella Sarah is a girl after my own daughter's heart. She knows just what she wants to wear, no matter who else has an opinion. Margaret Chodos-Irvine illustrates her own story, and perfectly captures the true look of a determined toddler in tantrum mode! This book is a must-read for any opinionated daughter, and her mother.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Favorite Nursery Rhymes from Mother Goose by Scott Gustafson

When I was a child I had a sweet nursery rhyme book given to me by my grandma. Although I'm sure I loved reading it, I especially remember spending time looking at the pictures. Looking back at it now, the pictures are still familiar, like old friends, and I remember which were my favorites.

I wanted a book for my daughter to love and remember also, and of course it required superior illustrations. After much searching I was pleased to find this book by Scott Gustafson, which I feel rivals the one from my childhood. Of all the available nursery rhyme books I have seen, I believe this one is far and above the best!

All of my children have been lovers of nursery rhymes, with or without good illustrations. There really is something to Mother Goose rhymes, which is probably why they are still around!

My 2 1/2 year old and I can get through this book all in one sitting, and neither one of us gets bored. My five and six year old still enjoy it, perhaps especially because of the excellent illustrations. The rhymes are classic, and the pictures are simply delicious!