Limited Edition KU Bookmarks!

Ok, so children's books usually make me do one of two things: cry or laugh, much like my two reactions to wasabi. So I'm going to tell you about my new favorite cry and laugh tales in honor of Children's Book Week, which is weird, because we really like to talk about the classics. A lot. But the new kids on the block are pretty cool too and we thought we'd introduce you in case you hadn't met, so that at the next party you go to you can impress people. You should make sure to have one of these AMAZINGLY AWESOME FREE BOOKMARKS YOU SEE ABOVE because we are also amazing and awesome. It's how we roll. Start your child off on the right path by teaching them NOT TO DOG EAR PAGES! Now there are staff who vehemently disagree with me and think it's ok to deface the written word with a painful and cruel crease, BUT THIS IS MY BLOG AND I DO WHAT I WANT. Ok now that you know where I stand on bookmarks, (I know it was keeping you up at night) let's get down to gold safety pins. I mean brass tacks. WORD PLAY! GOTCHA! That's the kind of fun you can have reading kids books, because children's book authors are the wisest, clever-est, best-est thinkers in the whole wide world and although you think their grammar is simple and sometimes nonsensical, their words are some of the truest ever written. Despite my ability to run-on, I think brevity is beautiful. I like to pack in in. (Ew.) Children's book author's are the best at this; they manage to take all the big heavy meaningful stuff and put it through the sieve that is the heart of a child. As we grow up, we just complicate things with language. So without further ado...

The Heart and Bottle by Oliver Jeffers

The AWESEOME SECRET COVER of The Heart and Bottle

The cover of this book is enough reason to crack it open.  BUT HERE'S THE THING. THIS IS A SECRET SO COME CLOSER....so this isn't the ACTUAL cover. The actual covers we had were torn so we undressed them and THIS was underneath! Why you would cover up this cover with a cover is just crazy talk. So, we've decided to display it as such. It’s like you’re on drugs. fun for you AND the kids! But seriously the cover rules. It’s got space, whales, squirrels, elephants, Buckingham Palace Guards, bees on fire, yes i said bees on fire, and yellow duckies. Ya that’s just the cover. It begins with illustrations of the many curiosities in a little girl’s head; in one of my favorite images she is under the water passing by a whale and the little speech bubble says, “oh, hello” and another favorite is a ship falling off the edge of the world. BUT I DON’T UNDERSTAND THE BEES ON FIRE. BUT WAIT I HAVEN’T EVEN TALKED ABOUT THE BEST PART...THE WWUUURRDDDSSS! And the point they make in sentence form. Some like to call it the lesson, the moral of the story, the point, if you will. You might cry. I may have cried. If we’re being honest here. And I think we are. I’ll just say this; any story that reminds adults to be child-like is.....wait hold on...crying again...ok ...any story that reminds us what our hearts were like when we were small is my kind of story. This is one of those books ; that transcends age; it’s for all of us. YAY!

 

Leon and the Place Between by Grahame Baker-Smith

Cover of Leon & The Place Between. I KNOWRITE!

“With a ripple of gold braid, the curtains slowly parted... Leon could smell the magic”
“Where am i? asked Leon.
“This is the place between,” said the boy.
“Between what?”
“Between there and back again. This is the place where magic sends you.”

Hold on i’m crying, I just finished this.
Ok. I’m ok. Let’s talk.  This is a book that has that Peter Pan-esque “if you believe” vibe AND it has absurdly gorge illustrations so it’s a win win. The cover is what first drew me in, (because you know, that's how that works) but the story kept me there. My favorite part about this story is that instead of a special girl or boy experiencing an adventure (whoch does happen) Leon assures his friends that anyone can go where he went, as long as they believe. SOBBBBB.

 

 

 

Then there is the stunning "Snow Rabbit, Spring Rabbit" by Il Sung Na:

This makes me want bunnies and sheep badly!

A page from Snow Rabbit, Spring Rabbit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a simple yet lovely tale about the changing of the seasons. A cute bunny peeks in on various animals as they hibernate or migrate and its terribly sweet and beautifully illustrated.

Don't like crying or being swept off your feet by the wonder of a beautifully written children's book but do enjoy laughing at sometimes cold and harsh reality of karma? Then check out the adorable, no gimmicks tale "I Want My Hat Back" by Jon Klasson.

I Want My Hat Back

 

This was a wonderful surprise for us when we read it; word spread through the unbreakable KU grape-vine to check it out and check it out we did. Now we are spreading the word to you! Voted one of the 10 Best Illustrated Books of 2011 by the NyTimes, its illustrations are clean and simple. If you want something different, check this AHT.  See also: "Walter the Farting Dog", and "Poop".

Tell us your favorites!

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So, what do you think?