Monday, November 14, 2011

Picture Books!

As promised, NaNoWriMo has taken over my life. But we've hit a really good rhythm together, and dare I say I think it just might stick--till November 30, that is.

This past weekend, I had a perfect night at home filled with take out Mexican food, time spent with my family (even if they did fall asleep on the couch), college football (and an Irish win at that!), and four new picture books to read and enjoy.

The first one I read was Maurice Sendak's Bumble-Ardy, which I've been eager to get my hands on for a while now and hadn't made it to the bookstore yet since the one nearest to me at home closed (RIP Borders). When I finally did, it delivered Sendak's usually odd and wonderful combination of words and illustrations.

In this book, however, I didn't find quite the usual charm that I have found in Sendak's other books. For me, some chemistry was missing slightly, or something was slightly off. Nevertheless, I enjoyed some of the illustrations and still found several of the playful rhymes and somewhat dark storyline unique and interesting.

These next two books turned out to be the clear winners for my taste of the four picture books I selected for the weekend. This one, Grandpa Green was so unique and heartfelt that I read it three times in a row. Told from a grandson's perspective, the story tells about the life of Grandpa Green and how he keeps a garden of topiaries that tell the story of his memories--with grandfather and grandson moving within a garden of topiaries throughout the book! So. Cute.


A Sick Day for Amos McGee was another immediate classic for me--not altogether surprising for a Caldecott medal winner. The whimsical tale of Amos McGee, an old man who works at a zoo reading to owls and racing tortoises and how he spends his sick day made me wish I lived in Amos's world. Or rather, that I was Amos.

This is a wonderful, classic story with beautiful illustrations that I would honestly love to have framed and hanging in my home.

This last one was mostly for fun, but I just love Marcel the Shell so much that I couldn't resist. This book was such a cute supplement to the beloved YouTube video about the tiny shell, and all of the new additions followed perfectly with the adorably funny and slightly weird tone of the shell.

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