Tuesday, June 17, 2008

If You Give a Toddler a Novel...

I used to eagerly look forward to the latest release by my favorite authors. The new Ann Patchett. The new Jhumpa Lahiri. Even the new Marian Keyes. Well, I still do eagerly anticipate the latest novel or collection of essays or short stories by my favorite writers...it's just that my stable of favorites has grown to include some new names.

Tonight I was surfing Amazon.com for an item to add to my order to get the free super saver shipping, and I clicked on the "we have recommendations for you" button. Lo and behold, one of the books was recommended to me is a yet-to-be-published addition to the "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie" series by Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond. It will be released this fall and is titled "If You Give a Cat a Cupcake." And I let out a little squeal of delight.

And not only that, "If You Give a Bear a Brownie" is scheduled for a winter release. Two new books in one of our favorite series! And that really is exciting because not only does William adore them, but I actually really do like those books. They're short, they're funny, and the illustrations are clever.

Sometimes, William gets hooked on a book that doesn't excite me as much. He'll demand that we read it over and over, and yet all I can think of is ways to hide the book until he forgets about it. Primo examples are a couple of the books we received free from the state this year--it's a great program, and I wholeheartedly endorse it, but oh my, could someone not have found a better book than "Big Brother, Little Brother"?

Or he'll get really into a book that takes forever to read. That's not so bad if you can convince him to let you only read a portion of the book. I love "Frog and Toad Together" more than many (most) children's books, but sometimes I just don't want to read all five chapters of it before naptime. Reaching a two-or-three-story truce is much better. A friend of mine once picked up a new children's book at a bookstore and eyeballed it for about five seconds before intoning, "Too many words." I feel like a terrible person and mother for saying this, but yeah, sometimes William's books have too many words. I've buried the otherwise delightful "Strega Nona" deep within the books in William's room because I don't have the energy to read the whole thing in one sitting. Please don't take away my English degree.

So when he gets really into a book that I like and isn't super-long, I rejoice. We may get a little weary of reading "If You Give a Pig a Party" for the four thousandth time (but who wouldn't?) but at least it's short and cute. Hallelujah!


JenFen said...

I am so excited to hear about the cat and the cupcake book. Upon what I think was your initial recommendation (or maybe I should say William's) the kids received a pack of the "If you Give" series in their Easter baskets of which "If you give a Pig a Pancake" has become one of Jadyn's personal favorites.

And I hear ya on some of those stories - Jake has been requesting Horton Hears a Who at bedtime. Man, what a LONG book that one is.

Anonymous said...

Oh! I'm SOOOO excited!!!