I’m a mom to a seven year old girl, so I’ve put my time in reading many, many (many) children’s books. In my view, that makes me an authority, so I thought I’d list a few our favorites so far. This list doesn’t include piles of licensed character books like Little Critter, The Berenstain Bears, Max and Ruby, and such. Though we love them, I wanted to highlight a few original, charming stories that have captured our hearts.
The Day the Crayons Quit, by Drew Daywalt.
We loved this story about a box of crayons who each write a letter to their owner, a little boy named Duncan, and who list their grievances. Red is overworked, black feels underused, and yellow and orange are fighting about who is the real color of the sun. Lilly is especially tickled by peach, who is NAKED because Duncan peeled the wrapper off him, and he’s embarrassed to come out of the crayon box. She got the next in the series, The Day the Crayons Came Home, for Christmas, and that’s wonderful, too.
Otis, by Loren Long.
We just fell in love with the little tractor Otis, and his adventures on the farm. After he gets replaced by a new shiny yellow tractor, Otis is inconsolably sad, but when his friend the little calf gets stuck in Mud Pond, Otis knows just what to do. There’s several in the series, and Lilly especially likes Otis and the Tornado. We have Otis and the Puppy from the library right now. He’s putt-puff-puttedy-chuffed his way into our hearts.
Officer Buckle and Gloria, by Peggy Rathman.
Every year, Officer Buckle gives his Safety Speech at the local schools, and every year, all the kids fall asleep. That is, until he gets a new police dog, Gloria, who accompanies him and, behind his back, does crazy tricks to illustrate each rule. The crowds go wild, but what happens when Officer Buckle finds out about Gloria’s shenanigans? Lilly loves to go through all of the rules listed behind each cover: Never Stand on a Swivel Chair, Don’t Eat Raw Hamburger, Never Play in the Microwave, and other fun and practical admonishments.
Swimmy, by Leo Lionni
Swimmy is a little black fish who loses all his friends to a big, hungry tuna. Despite this, he can still see all the beauty in his underwater world, and eventually makes new friends. He teaches them how to defend themselves against the predators of the sea. Lilly likes this book, but I think I love it more, mostly for the wonderful artwork. I definitely need to buy more Leo Lionni books.
There’s so many more I could list here, and maybe in the future I will. In the meantime, we’ll have fun exploring and reading the fantastic books out there for children.