I Will Never Not Ever Eat a Tomato by Lauren Child is perfect for fussy eaters (which rarely a child is not. I remember when I was young I told my parents I never wanted to eat chicken again. They continued to serve it on a regular basis, but told me it was lobster. I thought it was delicious). Charlie has to take care of his little sister Lola tonight, but when dinner time rolls around she has a lengthy list of foods she will absolutely not eat. Charlie plays along however–if Lola won’t eat carrots, perhaps she would eat orange twilgets from Jupiter? She won’t eat mashed potatoes, but will she try a cloud fluff from the top of Mount Fuji? Find out in this hilarious story.
The Usborne Book of Night-Night Stories by Sam Taplin and Francesca di Chiara is a delightful collection of tales to tell your sleepy child. The most wonderful thing I could think of after an exhausting day would be to be tucked in and read to. Most children love to lulled to sleep by the soothing voice of their caregiver. This book tackles traditional bedtime themes of the moon, wanting to stay up instead of sleep, lullabies, explaining natural phenomena, and dreams, all told with familiar and adorable animal pairs of elephants, lions, penguins, and polar bears, among others. All of the stories are tabbed, so that your child may locate his or her favorite.
Who is Melvin Bubble by Nick Bruel is a very clever book that might help introduce your child to the concepts of identity and perspective. Melvin Bubble appears to be a regular kid. But who is he really? If you ask his dad, he’ll say he’s a chip off the old block! If you ask his mom, she’ll ramble on about his messy room. If you ask his friend Jimmy, he’ll say Melvin is the coolest ever because he can whistle through his nose! But don’t stop there–ask his dog: “Woof Woof Arf Woof,” ask his teddy bear: “He really likes hugs!” Ask a talking zebra, or a magic rock, or even Melvin himself. They’ll all have something different to say. Because a person can be significant for multiple reasons, and everyone has a unique opinion.
Love the Baby by Steven L. Layne, with pictures by Ard Hoyt, is the tale of one bunny’s transition to big brotherhood. He’s very happy when mom and dad come home with the new baby, but not for long. Soon mom is rocking the baby in his chair! Nana is singing the baby his song! Dad is building a tower for baby with his blocks! And everywhere he goes people are asking him to help love the baby. So he pretends to love the baby. He’ll tickle him, but not on the tummy. He’ll read to him, but not from his favorite book. Until one day he’s tired of pretending he’s not jealous of all the attention the new baby is getting, and runs up to his room. But that night, the baby is crying, and when big brother goes to comfort him, he realizes he really does love the baby!
Olivia Forms a Band is my favorite of Ian Falconer’s fabulous Olivia series. Olivia, you should know, is well endowed with the ability to wear people out, especially her mother. In this installment of the saga that is Olivia, her family is planning to attend a fireworks show. Olivia is outraged when she’s informed there will not be a band at the evening’s festivities. “I’ll be the band,” she concludes. But, her mother tells her, “the word ‘band’ means more than one person, and a band sounds like more than one person.” This sounds like a challenge to Olivia. She grabs all the items necessary for a one-pig band, and is soon clanging through the house (to her, of course, she sounds like the most marvelous marching band). You’re sure to enjoy this Olivia book as well as all of Falconer’s others. What will Olivia think of next?
The Perfect Nest by Catherine Friend with illustrations by John Manders is a very cute story about a very crafty cat. The cat in question, Jack, is attempting to attract the perfect bird, who will lay the perfect egg, which will make the perfect omelet, by building the perfect nest. First, a Spanish chicken arrives and lays an egg, then a French duck does the same, followed by a southern goose! Jack is ecstatic–he could have three omelets, if he can just get these bickering birds out of of the picture, which ends up taking more effort than he had planned. By the time they’re gone, the eggs have hatched, and now three little chicks are calling Jack “mom.” This is a fun read with a chance for you to practice your foreign accents!