Small Things

Library Books Enjoyed, 2/10/14


Three more books my kids enjoyed, plus one I read for myself (still not really an adult book, but since I read YA as much as actually grown-up books, it will have to do).

Knock, Knock by Sophie Blackall

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My kids are completely into jokes these days, especially knock-knock jokes. They still don’t quite “get” what makes jokes funny (although with me for a mother, they may never…), but that doesn’t stop them from laughing their heads off when one of them tells (or makes up a joke). This collection was neat because each joke was illustrated by a different artist, mostly well-known children’s illustrators. The jokes ranged in both their level (some I could explain to the kids, some I didn’t bother to) and their humor (although, again, that could be me), and I think the illustration quality varied, too, but overall, it was a great collection. It certainly merited lots of individual paging through by the three jokesters-in-training.

Amanda Pig and the Awful, Scary Monster by Jean Van Leeuwen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve at least heard of this series for awhile, but this was the first installment that I actually sat down and read with my kids. It was a little long for reading aloud, but we all enjoyed it despite the length. I particularly liked how the book dealt with a real-world fear (a monster in the bedroom), and that the fear was overcome in a realistic way–it took some time, as well as the help of her family. Her brother, Oliver’s, suggestions were a bit hit-or-miss, in a real sibling manner, but you could tell that he really did mean well (most of the time). Oliver’s name was also a hit in our family, because we have a cousin with the same name.

An Undone Fairy Tale by Ian Lendler

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This author and illustrator basically took the concept of a story not being finished quick enough for the reader and ran with it. The story starts as a fairy tale, but soon, the narrator is having to interject and ask the reader to slow down because Ned, who seems to be the artist, casting director, handyman, and all around guy-in-charge, is having trouble getting things ready when they are supposed to be. He tries to make emergency substitutions (first small–a donut for a crown–but then bigger, like grape popsicles for a wall), and eventually gives up as the story devolves into hilarious chaos. This one really just hit the perfect note for my kids–they thought it was absolutely hilarious and made us read it over and over.

Alice on Board by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Another fun installment in the Alice series…this one won’t be a favorite, but I enjoyed it just fine, and I’m all set to read the last one now…

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