It didn’t take long for me to realize that my tastes don’t always align with my son’s. Thankfully, I’m bigger than him, so Mama don’t answer to nobody. However, when it comes to books, I try to appease the little bugger, even when I find myself reading the same freakin’ book over and over and…
Therefore, I’ve created the Top Three List for your reading pleasure. Each week, I’ll give you my toddler’s current favorite books and my favorite children’s books to read to him. I’ll also toss in what I’m reading after bedtime (and possibly while the kiddos are distracted with Cheerios or puffs or whatever else I toss their way), along with my upcoming reads. Have you picked up on the fact that I’m waaay too organized in my literary pursuits?
Hopefully, this will help you find books your child enjoys, as well as a few that you may enjoy as well. Thankfully, we live in an era where children’s authors (and film makers) are considering their parental audiences as well, so clever children’s books (and movies) are no longer a rarity.
The Toddler’s Top Three:
1. Peppa Pig and the Great Vacation by Neville Astley
Basically, George is all things Peppa Pig at the moment. The TV show is his main screen-time request (ahem, not that I EVER let him watch TV…mumble, mumble, avoid eye contact…), and the books imitate the show. The books, sadly, lack the subtle parental humor, however, which I find appalling.
2. Stars by Mary Lyn Ray and Marla Frazee
This book nearly made my list, which makes me happy as I read it for the 87th time. It has a pleasant word scheme (is that a thing?) and flows through so many sweet descriptions of the purpose of stars — wands, flowers, sheriff, etc.
3. The Z was Zapped by Chris Van Allsburg
“Could this be an alphabet book in disguise? The playwright will neither confirm nor deny it. You be the judge,” according to the inside flap. This book is a bit…violent?…for an ABC picture book, but a fan favorite.
Mama’s Top Three:
1. I Am Not a Chair by Ross Burach
Can a giraffe really be mistaken for a chair? Herein lies the identity crisis Giraffe suffers as he tries to make friends in the jungle. Hil-arious.
2. The Day the Crayons Came Home by Drew Daywalt (illustrations by the illustrious Oliver Jeffers)
There’s a whole cult following for these crayons’ adventures, but this is one of my favorites (I nearly nicknamed my son “Duncan” in homage). Duncan has lost or forgotten numerous crayons throughout the years, and now they’re writing postcards to remind him of their times together. Or, rather, what they have suffered in his absence (ahem, Burnt Sienna or possibly Tan crayon who was EATEN BY A DOG AND PUKED UP ON THE RUG).
3. Triangle by Mac Barnett
A devious triangle — appropriately named “Triangle” — is up to mischief as he runs to Square’s house to a play a “sneaky, sneaky trick” on his friend (frenemy?). It backfires, much to the dry humor of those involved. I love when authors “wink” at the reader.
What Mama Reads:
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
I promise I’ll get off the young-adult wagon soon. However, I’d heard far too many wonderful things about this magical novel to resist. I actually went to the bookstore and purchased this bad boy instead of waiting on the library’s copy. And it’s living up to its $18.99, though I may have used a gift card (thanks, Mom/Santa!).
On Mama’s To-Do List:
- Funny in Farsi: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America, by Firoozeh Dumas
- Giving It All Away…And Getting It All Back Again, by David Green, founder & CEO of Hobby Lobby
- My Lady Jane, by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows
What are you reading right now? Any kids’ books worth reading over and over?