Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Home in the Woods

This spectacular book was a Christmas present for me... uh, I mean my kids ;)

Eliza Wheeler 2019

Inspired by Eliza Wheeler's great-grandmother and her depression era family, it features her absolutely wonderful illustrations.  Widowed with eight children, the family finds a shack in the woods to fix up and call their own.  They work hard, but there is so much joy and love for each other and their natural surroundings that you can't help but be inspired by their way of life!







Other books by Eliza Wheeler:



Twelve Dancing Princesses

Brigette Barrager 2011

I guess you never get too old for beautifully illustrated princesses!  Every time we open this book we have to spend time looking at each princess (named after flowers) and pick our favorites.  It's a hard choice!  The best part is, we have a matching tile game as a companion to this book.  It adds some extra characters and a couple more diverse princesses which is nice.  Maybe it's a symptom of getting older, but Charlotte seems to beat me every time!










The matching game gets plenty of use.





Monday, May 18, 2020

The Birthday Tree

We've got another birthday in our house this month.  I pulled out this one for some afternoon reading...

Paul Fleischmann
pictures by Marcia Sewall 1979

Here's a simple story with a hint of folk magic about a sailor who leaves the sea behind.  He settles inland and plants an apple tree when his son his born.  Somehow that tree is tied to their son and even when he goes off to sea on his own, the apple tree has a way of letting them know how he is doing.  




Saturday, May 16, 2020

The Inside Outside Book of Libraries

Julie Cummins
pictures by Roxie Munro 1996

This was quite a score for me at the thrift store several years ago.  Being a book lover and therefore a library lover, it was fun to find a book all about different libraries and how people use them.  Included here are some famous ones like the Library of Congress and the New York Public library with its marble lions, "Patience" and "Fortitude" outside. But we also learned about the Andrew Heiskell Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, the Tool Lending Library in Berkley California, and the Abraham Lincoln Library on a Navy aircraft carrier.  Even the Explorers Club Library is mentioned (I have a friend who attended a wedding there).  Published in 1996, the information on the Internet (as a kind of library) is dated but still a fun read.










Outside of the New York Public Library (when I was there years ago with a friend).

(Some of our own library.)

Friday, May 15, 2020

The Glassmaker's Daughter

"There was once a beautiful city built on water.  Its palaces floated like birds in nests on the sea and its lamplight danced like fireflies across the ripples..."

Dianne Hofmeyr
illustrated by Jane Ray 2017

So begins the tale of Daniela, the glassmaker's daughter who wouldn't smile.  In true folk tale fashion, a prize is awarded to whoever can make Daniela smile.  This brings out the best of Venice- the mask maker, the sword swallower, the lion tamer.  But it's not until a simple glass blower shows Daniella that the power to be happy lies within herself.  The girl finally begins to smile and laugh bringing the whole city with her.

A very nice read aloud book with pictures that will especially appeal to younger kids.













Saturday, April 25, 2020

The Frog in the Well

Once there was a frog who lived at the bottom of a well and he thought that it was the whole world.  But when his well dries up and he has to venture out into what he thinks is the "end of the world", he begins to have a new perspective on life.

Alvin Tresselt
illustrated by Roger Duvoisin 1958

A subtle message about expanding your horizons paired with some spot on midcentury illustrations.









Other books by Alvin Tresselt:  The Mitten

Other books illustrated by Roger Duvoisin:  The House of Four Seasons