Thursday, May 27, 2010

What We Found At The Library, #18

Thanks for joining me this week! I've decided that this will be my last book swap for awhile, so if you're waiting for the perfect time to link up -- this is it! I'll let you know if/when I decide to start back up again, but let's just consider this the start of a summer break.

I didn't love this book at first read, but as the days wore on, I realized that it was sticking with me. Making me think and consider long after we'd shut its pages. In this story, Toot is mopey. He just pokes around, wandering dejectedly from day to day as his friend Puddle tries everything he knows -- five-berry cobbler, parties, river rafting --to cheer up his friend, but nothing works. Puddle misses the old, happier Toot. But when a thunderstorm comes through, blowing and gnashing at the trees, Toot suddenly smiles. He snaps out of his mopey mood, one he didn't even realize he was in, and becomes cheerful again. All it took was a "big, whopping thunderstorm to clear the air." And I can so relate to that. I mope around without knowing why sometimes, and with a shift of weather -- or realization -- I snap out again. Back into happiness. I love that this book explores moods and friendship in such a supportive way, and I love that Toot recognizes the value of his loyal friend through his mopey journey.

You know we love our princess stories in this household. I was thrilled to happen upon one by A.A. Milne, the beloved creator of Winnie The Pooh, and had no choice but to check it out. Milne's storytelling plus Brown's sweet illustrations make this book one that I want to own. Mia watched with wide eyes as we read about the pampered princess Daffodil growing up with her fairy-granted gift: wherever she walks, flowers grow. But the gift turns out to be a burden: she's only allowed to walk on the gardens, while the village children must stay on the walkways. Daffodil has no room to run and play. When the royal doctor announces that the sweet princess doesn't thrive as she should, the Queen makes a change in plans. She and the King grant an entire hillside to be Daffodil's, and it becomes a flower-filled playground for the princess and the village children alike. Mia's fairy-tale soul was satisfied by this book, as well as Mama's fable-loving heart -- a match made in heaven.

(Again with the princesses...) Young Princess Katarina of Russia wishes for a husband and family. But her father, Tsar Nicholas, loves her so much that he can't bear to part with her. He comes up with a clever riddle to thwart the suitors who'd take her from him: the first man to correctly answer the riddle will win his daughter's hand. When Katarina sees the handsome Prince she wants to marry, she arranges a hint for him to solve the riddle, and an enjoyable mystery unfolds. It is SO obvious to me why this book was Justin's favorite: a loving, pinky-finger-tied father, a sweet, beautiful daughter, and a plan to keep her to himself forever. I think if Justin were a King, he'd be searching for the perfectly unanswerable riddle even now. Luckily, in the end of the story, the King is happy to give his daughter to a worthy prince. Mia loved the details in this story, and Justin loved reading it to his sweet little girl -- over and over again.

Now it's your turn! Share your recent book finds so we can have a few great suggestions going into summertime!


  1. Thanks for hosting such a fun carnival, happy to join this week; but even when I don't I get great ideas for what to look for on library trips.

  2. I love a good princess story :)

    And I'm linked up!

  3. I'm not sure I could've named any non-Winnie-the-Pooh A. A. Milne books before I read this, but The Magic Hill sounds delightful! I'll have to check that out.

    I'm kinda sad that What We Found is going on hiatus, but I understand the need for a break.

  4. We've been reading a book called *The Monkey and The Bee* at our house. Let me be clear, I DON'T think you should look for it, but it's inspired such fierce devotion in Penelope, it's worth a mention. The story's message is strange (a monkey and a bee meet in a tree; the monkey hits the bee and then the bee bites the monkey on the knee) even while the rhymes are fun to say. There are also lots of little things to look for on each page: an owl, a snake, a peacock, etc. It's strange and inexplicably violent, but I've never seen Penelope react so strongly to a book before. She demands to read it again and again throughout the day and if it's not the last book we read at bedtime she sobs for "her monkey". I almost wish we'd never discovered it, but...I'm glad it's teaching her to like reading, I guess.

    I'll miss What We Found At The Library. You always have such good ideas! (And obviously, we need them!)


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