Read Across America Day

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.                                

What Was I Scared Of

Back in a past life I taught pre-school, Kindergarten and 2nd grade for several years and worked as a children’s librarian doing story times and programming and the like for years as well. Sometimes I really miss it. Today is one of those days.

I know there’s a lot of controversy behind the man known as Dr. Seuss. Some of his political leanings have come to light and been questioned relatively recently and I can’t say I condone everything he believed or stood for. But you can’t deny that the man was a genius who revolutionized the children’s book world. There would be no Elephant and Piggie or other modern-day classics if there hadn’t first been Green Eggs and Ham or The Cat in the Hat.

He wrote countless books under several pseudonyms ranging from those beginning reader classics to lengthier volumes such as Horton Hears a Who and And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street. His grumpy Grinch is as familiar as Ebeneezer Scrooge around the holidays and is probably my favorite of his characters. But when it’s not Christmas-time my favorite story of his to read is a little-known tale that showed up in a compilation volume with The Sneetches. I found a bite-sized stand-alone copy of it several years ago that I snatched up and read to anyone who will listen. It’s got the power to send me into a fit of giggles like very few things in this world can do. I’m not even going to tell you anything else about it. But I encourage you to hunt down a copy, particularly if you’ve got any littles in your life.

And even if you don’t read this (or any other Dr. Seuss volume on what would have been his 114th birthday) book with your littles, I urge you to carve out a few minutes to read something together and celebrate the joys that reading can bring!

Picture Book Review ~ Yellow Favorites Part 3

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. 

I have a few last lovely yellow covers to share today. One is a newer release while the other two are older favorites (one reaching as far back as my own childhood…yep, that old!)

Windows Book Review

Windows

Written by: Julia Denos

Illustrated by: E.B. Goodale

Number of Pages: 32

Age Range: 4-8

Rating: 5/5

A boy and his dog take an evening walk through their neighborhood at dusk observing all the goings on. As the sky darkens the lights come on in the windows of shops, houses, and apartment buildings giving us (and the boy) a glimpse of what is happening inside. The details in the highlighted windows encourage discovery and re-reading while the neighborhood has both urban and suburban appeal. It’s a beautifully executed reminder to slow down and look around you, to appreciate the small moments and remember that those around us are more like us than they are different.

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate Book Review

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate

Written by: Jacqueline Kelley

Number of Pages: 344 

Age Range: 8-12

Rating: 5/5

We’re going back a few years to 2010 for this Newbery honor favorite. Eleven-year-old Calpurnia is facing the turn of the century and all that the new modern future will bring. Unfortunately she is expected to become a traditional Texas lady learning handiwork, cooking and all that goes with it. But she’d much rather spend time with her cantankerous grandfather studying bugs, digging in the mud and learning about Darwin and his groundbreaking (and controversial) theory of evolution. Callie, her family, and the whole community experience some unexpected events and go through some growing pains before they come to an understanding about what the future means for them all.

Callie is spunky and endearing and while this volume doesn’t solidify everything for Callie, there is a second installment that continues her story. I thoroughly enjoyed getting lost in both of them.

Hooper Humperdink Book ReviewHooper Humperdink….Not Him!

Written by: Theo LeSieg

Illustrated by: Charles E. Martin (It’s been reissued with new illustrations by Scott Nash (of Flat Stanley fame) as you’ll see if you click on the link above.)

Number of Pages: 48

Age Range: 5-9

Rating: 3/5

We’re going back even farther, all the way to 1976 for this early reader. Dr. Seuss wrote various volumes under another nom de plume which haven’t quite gained the same notoriety but there are a few gems among them. (This isn’t necessarily one of them, though it is a nostalgic favorite!) 🙂

The main character is having a party and inviting everyone but Hooper Humperdink. He lists everyone from A to Z (literally) and details all the fun things that will be happening. The reader can see the look of disappointment on Hooper’s face throughout the telling and when the narrator has a change of heart at the end we’re rewarded with an eager smile from both Hooper and his faithful pup. It’s a great discussion prompt for including others or feeling left out.

Well, I hope you’ve all managed to stay warm wherever you may be. And if I’ve missed any of your favorite yellow covered volumes (which I’m sure I have, there must be millions out there!) please share them in the comments below.  Happy reading!