picture books

I have visions of reviews and synopses and pictures and comparisons, but for now, there’s just a copy-n-paste of something else I once wrote!…..

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“Tell me your utter loved-every-page favourite children’s books,” one of my wild-and-wacky friends demanded! (she wasn’t just asking me, but I can’t resist answering that kind of a question!)
Except that it was too hard. How do you choose a handful of favourites?

So I went to the bookshelf and pulled off our absolute favourite picture books that we own and that are not lent out at the moment.

From top to bottom:
(and then when I’d listed them all I tried to see if I could possibly choose just a dozen of my absolute favourites – they’re the pink ones – a baker’s dozen – wink)

  • Anything by Beatrix Potter
  • Harry, the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion
  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
    and others by him, but especially this one
  • Diana and her Rhinoceros by Edward Ardizzone
    I’ve heard others find this totally nonsensical, but I think that’s what we love about it!
  • Dr Seuss / Theo Le Sieg books (he’s the same guy!)
    actually, our more sensible kids haven’t enjoyed them the same as some of the wilder ones!
  • The Three Billy-Goats Gruff  with woodcuts by Susan Blair
    can we ever go over a bridge without chanting this story? – or playing pooh sticks
  • Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox
  • The Little Yellow Digger by Betty and Alan Gilderdale
    we nearly bought the house where this story was set – but we got cashed out by someone with more money than us!
  • The Song of the King by Max Lucado
    another *favourite* author….now I don’t mean to be a traitor….BUT…..there is a dearth of quality literature written by Christians…..Lucado is one exception to this modern rule
  • Peepo! by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
    baby’s first history book, and according to Grandpa who grew up in that place at that time, it is very accurate.
  • The Mitten by Jan Brett
    well you don’t need to read this one in particular, but do make sure you see at least one of her books….they are *exquisitely* illustrated. In fact, sometimes we don’t even read the words…..we just drink in the pictures.
  • The Boy Who Held Back The Sea by Thomas Locker
    for another artistically gastronomic experience, this time with oils (I think)
  • Always Adam by Sheldon Oberman and Ted Lewin.
    There are not many books that give me a lump in the throat every single time I read them – this is one of them.
  • Millions of Cats by Wanda Gag.
    Confession: I love this book. My kids don’t care so much for it. We read it lots anyway! (and now that I’ve just read the link I’ve posted, I’m even more in awe of her)
  • The Big Alfie and Annie Rose Story Book by Shirely Hughes.
    Here’s someone who understands a (modern western) child’s mind and captures it so well on paper.
  • The Friendly Book by Margaret Wise Brown.
    I remember enjoying this book as  child and was delighted when “Grandma and” gifted it to one of the children. (I think “Grandpa” forgot to write in his name – wink)
  • The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper.
    What a delight to discover THE COMPLETE, ORIGINAL EDITION after reading through an abridged one for a few years Until then I had always wondered why people raved about this book. Moral: never by anything short of complete, original and unabridged!
  • Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown.
    I still don’t understand what it is that makes the littlies giggle when we read “Good night nobody” – but they do it every time!
  • Doctor De Soto by William Steig
    you really need Dadda to read this one aloud!
  • The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
    this is one book we have to act out at the beach – seeing as there’s no snow round here!
  • The Little Red Hen by Paul Galdone
    please don’t make me suffer through modern politically correct socialist versions where everyone shares the baking coz that’s kind, OK
  • Green Eggs and Ham by Dr Seuss
  • Ten in the Bed by Penny Dale
    we love stories we can sing…and play
  • You Are Special by Max Lucado
  • Come Over To My House by Theo LeSieg
  • The Nursery Collection by Shirley Hughes
  • The Happy Hedgehog Band by Jill Barton
    tum-tum-te-tum, diddle-diddle-dum
  • Something From Nothing by Phoebe Gilman
    I’m glad this got the Ruth Schwartz award – it derseves recognition!
  • Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs (not in photo) and Pickles to Pittsburgh by Judi Barrett
    oh so funny and clever (when looking for a website to link to I came across loads of lessons plans to sue with the books – oh please, don’t ruin the book! JUST ENJOY IT!)
  • Time for Bed by Mem Fox
  • Hairy Maclary by Lynley Dodd
    no kiwi kid can grow up without reading these
  • The Princess and the Kiss by Jennie Bishop
    arguably the most expensive picture book I’ve ever bought – and worth every cent
  • Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
    suspense for three year olds!
  • Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
    still makes it to my list even though I’ve coloured out the witch’s hat and rewritten the witchy-poo pages!
  • The Story About Ping by Marjorie Flack and Kurt Wiese
    set in China, with universal appeal
  • The Tale of Three Trees by Angela Elwell Hunt
    precious
  • Titch by Pat Hutchins
    lots of her books are great – and this one is particularly so for the smallest member of the family!
  • The Elephant Tree by Penny Dale
    make sure you SHOUT the bear page!
  • We’re Going on A Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen
    isn’t this an alltime favourite of everybody!?
  • My Cat Likes to Hide in Boxes by Eve Sutton
    there’s something about silly rhymes!
  • Owl Moon by Jane Yolen
    perhaps my most favourite-est picture book ever. Make sure you read it slowly.
  • Katie Morag‘s Island Stories by Mairi Hedderwick
    we loved these long before we planned to go and visit the island where they are set – and hopefully meet the author’s daughter who has a studio there
  • The Little Farm by Lois Lenski
    simple pictures, endearing text, little book just right for little hands to hold, informative but still a good story
  • The Land of Gray Wolf by Thomas Locker
    again
  • The Squire and the Scroll by Jennie Bishop
    every bit as wonderful as The Princess and The Kiss
  • James Herriot’s Treasury for Children by ta-da James Herriot
    one of our favourite anthologies
  • Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey
    there’s a reason this book won the Caldecott Medal

    As well as wonderful books, Mem Fox has written Ten Commandments for Reading. I love them!

One Response to picture books

  1. ccnz says:

    Hey Rach, any chance of me getting access to the link? Please please, pretty please…. 🙂

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