As well you might know, if you’ve been reading a while, I am passionate about books in general (see our ever evolving library for evidence) and children’s books in particular. There are very few gifts quite as special and meaningful as a well chosen book.
Every year our children get a new volume in their spring baskets and every year I take particular pleasure in picking those books out.
This year’s selection
‘The Swiss Family Robinson‘ by Johann Wyss for my Iain. A classic tale for my classic boy, with his oh, so, adventurous heart. He’s going to love it, I am sure. He’s in the midst of another long book at the moment and I can hardly wait for him to finish so that he can start this one and we can talk about it together.
‘Uncle Remus: the Complete Tales‘ as told by Julius Lester for Mr. Elijah Rain. Elijah and Julius Lester go together like peas and carrots (this isn’t the first time he’s been charmed). By Monday night he was 120 pages in. Elijah can just devour books. I’m happiest when I can find him long, long books, beautifully hardbound and with wonderful illustrations so that he really has the time to read into the story and get to know the characters, to be able to carry the tale with him for a little longer then a day or two. It is especially hard to find books that are both challenging and appropriate for his mere seven years. Finding this one on clearance at a local bookstore felt like a major score!
‘A Child’s Garden of Verses‘ by Robert Louis Stevenson for Galen. I’ve discovered that Galen really enjoys poetry. I thought that a collection of poetry just for him was in order and when I came across this lavishly illustrated version (also in the clearance bin), I knew I had found the one. I’m very seriously considering copying some of the illustrations and hanging them on our walls. And the poetry is such that a little child can understand it, both in it’s form and subject.
‘Baby Animals‘ by Gyo Fujikawa, with it’s charming and nostalgic illustrations (I want to try to recreate so many of the little dresses in here!) and simple text for Miss Màiri. When she was brought in to the table laden with all of those interesting things, this book was the very first thing that she reached for. Reading the animal sounds makes her giggle and try to copy us. Several times a day I’ll find her sitting and looking at the pictures on her own, often times pointing out the “duh-duh”s (ducks!).