In which Annie (high school teacher, mother of two young girls and a younger boy) and her aunt Deborah (children's bookseller, mother of two young women in their 20s) discuss children's books and come up with annotated lists.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Dear Annie,

What a magical time you're having these days.  Ahhh.

The Wind in  the Willows was one of those Stuart Little moments for me.  I think I tried engaging my kids in the book at too young an age -- and I didn't have the amazing help of Inga Moore's illustrations.  It was a book that I had loved, but that never took with my next generation.

Inga Moore is great.  She's also done a heavily-illustrated, unabridged
The Secret Garden
which is gorgeous.

Sticking with good illustration and three or four year-olds, I wanted to talk about a new and lovely book by Deborah Underwood, illustrated by Renata Liwska: 
The Quiet Book
There are many kinds of quiet:/ First one awake quiet/jelly side down quiet/Don't scare the robin quiet/Others telling secrets quiet....

The whole book is a list.  The pictures are good (bordering on cute, maybe, but still very expressive), and the situations cover a huge range.  What I love about this book is that it's such a good one to talk about with a child.  It gives you the opportunity to delve into how one feels in response to a whole gamut of stimuli.  It's so much more natural than sitting down with a clunky this-is-how-we-feel book (I am a deep disliker of the dreaded Berenstain bears -- but that can hold for another day).  And there's so much to imagine.  An excellent conversation starter.



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