Thursday, January 21, 2010

What We Found At The Library, #9

Simple, repetitive, quick, rhyming, colorful, and interactive -- each are wonderful qualities for a toddler's book, and this one has them all. Sheep of all colors, shapes, and personalities are described in this cute book, but always with the underlying question, Where is the green sheep? It was a perfect opportunity for Lauren to focus on a question while disguising it as a rhyming adventure. And each page is full of comparisons: scared sheep, brave sheep; hot sheep, cold sheep; up sheep, down sheep. There was a lot of really good (fun) information for a toddler to absorb in this little book, and absorb it, she did. We must have read this book fifty times during the two weeks we had it. And I only started to get sick of it around day 10 -- impressive.

Lauren's Other Favorite: The Odd Egg, by Emily Gravett

It was such a toss-up between Green Sheep and Odd Egg for Lauren's favorite this time, that I decided to include them both. This book (by the same author as Orange Pear Apple Bear) is really wonderful, allowing the reader to explore suspense, humor, and a little bit of danger without being truly scared. The main character (besides the giant, spotted egg) is Duck. All of Duck's friends -- Owl, Flamingo, Parrot, Chicken -- are waiting for their eggs to hatch, but Duck alone is eggless. In one of my favorite illustrations, Duck stares pointedly between his outstretched legs where his egg should be safely nestled, while the other birds warm their eggs. Desperate, Duck finds a rather interesting egg to call his own, though it's clearly not a duck's egg. Duck knits booties and a scarf anyway. He patiently perches atop his speckled egg and waits to meet his baby. While each egg creak, cracks open to reveal a newborn bird, their parents all watch closely to see what will happen when the enormous 'duck' egg cracks open. Another of my favorite illustrations shows the wise owls shying away, suspicious of what will emerge. And they were right to do so...because out of the egg snaps a huge open-jawed crocodile, threatening to gobble up every last one of those snooty, proud birds. On the back inside cover, the author has drawn the crocodile dressed in his booties and scarf, happily following his 'mama' duck. We all loved this funny, wonderfully drawn book, and snapped threateningly at each other for days after returning it to the library. It comes highly recommended from my crocodile-loving baby girls.

In this imaginative book, a little girl is so smitten with her pink cupcakes that she eats...and eats...until she turns pink as well. While she's thrilled with the change -- She's Pinkerbelle! She's Pinkerella! -- her parents are downright horrified. They cart her to the doctor who prescribes a diet of green things and absolutely NO more pink cupcakes. Not worried in the slightest, Pinkalicious goes about her ways until she goes just one cupcake too far...and turns red. Finally worried about her atrocious red hue (and I can totally relate here...), she subjects herself to everything green in the house. Pickles, brussels sprouts, lima beans, whatever is green is consumed. And lo - her red and pink skin fades back to a perfect child-colored tone. Mia loved this book for one basic reason: Pink. Okay, two reasons: Pink and Cupcakes. The story was cute and outrageous, perfect for a creative preschooler with imagination to spare.

A boy and his handmade boat are inseparable in the beginning of this gorgeous book. Held tight by a string in the grip of the boy, the toy boat vaguely wonders what it would be like to sail free with the big boats he sees across the water. When a storm passes through and wrenches the string from the boy's grip, the boat finally gets his chance. But being so tiny in the wake of such huge boats is terrifying, and the toy boat struggles to stay afloat. Each boat he encounters has a menacing face and its own scary personality on the waves, making the innocent toy boat wonder if he'll ever see the kind face of his owner again. The illustrations in this book are lovely -- bright and realistic, thoughtful and intense, detailed and gorgeous. The story itself is full of hope and hard lessons learned about both independence and self-reliance. I really liked this book, but in the interest of full disclosure, I should state that I was the only member of my family who did. Justin thought it was boring, Mia endured it a few times, and Lauren didn't give it the time of day. I'd love to find a kindred Toy Boat spirit out there, though...any takers?

Your turn! What did you all find at the library (or bookstore!) that you've been enjoying lately?

PS - I decided this week to discontinue the Mr. Linky list because the old ones get deleted with each new list that gets added. So I won't be able to go back and find your links as time goes on. If you don't mind, please just leave your link in the comments (copy and paste, or make it an actual link) so I'll always have proof of your participation. You can't hide, now...


  1. Confession time: While we do make it to the library about every two weeks and we bring home a stack of books, I rarely read most of them. My older girls read to my younger children! But now I feel compelled to actually read some of the books I choose. Thanks!

  2. FUN! This is my first time jumping in the game. But I get so excited about books so this one is right up my alley:)

    Our household's latest favorite is: You Can Do It, Sam by Amy Hest.

    A little bear and his mama make cakes on a snowy, wintery day. The warm house fills with the smell of delicious cakes before the two of them go out to deliver their finished product to their neighbors. Sam, with his mama’s encouragement, makes it through the fresh snow and delivers each cake himself. After they are finished they come home and enjoy a warm tasty treat themselves with a cup of hot coco, bundled up in front of a fire.

    Not only do I love the lesson of encouragement and independence, but it inspires us to hunker down and enjoy cold snowy days from inside…the days I naturally dislike during the months of January and February.

  3. Oops. Not only was I logged into my other blog account, but I forgot to send a link. I'll use the "this is my first time" excuse:)

    Thanks for the fun carnival:)

  4. Seriously girl, you find the cutest books! I just don't go to the library alot....for some reason, taking 3 babies out in the cold sound riduculous to me!

    however, a friend of my mom's just gave us like 13 new books that she bought from a super cute little book shop here in our town. {If you wanna see a cool bookshop, you need to come here, it's awesome!}
    But some really cute ones. My fave so far is "What Grandma's Do Best" which when you turn it over it's "What Grandpa's Do Best"... :)

  5. I posted!! Here's my link: I have no idea how to make it where you can click on it in someone's comments.

    When I taught preschool, we read Purplicous and Goldilicious too. Very cute books with such good messages! (I don't think I spelled them right)

    This is always a fun post! Thanks.

  6. Let's see: Katherine's really enjoying the *Amelia Bedelia* series right now. Penelope's still into *Brown Bear, Brown Bear*. I've been reading a great collection of short stories called *All Aunt Hagar's Children* by Edward P. Jones. And Chris just finished a book called *Sharpe's Trafalgar* by Bernard Cornwell.

    There! Book ideas for the whole family!..but I kind of miss the Mr. Linky!

  7. Maybe you can try McKlinky:

    It's free and is embedded in the post. No separate window pops up.


Hmm...And how did that make you FEEL?