#pb10for10 Ten Picture Book Memories
For 2015 #pb10for10, my first time, the picture books I’ve chosen are not connected by a theme but they are the ones that have a place on my shelves forever because of the memories that sit inside them.
Some books have been chosen for the sheer joy my children found in them, others for the message they spoke, or their wonderful rhythms that made music with words or the thoughtful interpretation that is picture book illustration.
Fox in Socks by Dr Suess. The man is a wizard of words and this is a most magical book. In our house, when my boys were younger, it was a regular bed-time read. Dad was the only one allowed to read it and he took the task very seriously indeed. It was wonderful fun and wonderful modelling of reading behaviour by a dad.
Fidgety Fish by Ruth Galloway. When my children I always announced the name of the book and who wrote, showing the cover, before moving on the story. Fidgety Fish was my eldest son’s all-time favourite first book. Whenever I announced the title of any other book, he would proudly pipe up with “by Ruth Galloway” as if the author of Fidgety Fish was the only author worth mentioning in the whole world.
For Every Child a Better World by Kermit the Frog in co-operation with the United Nations. I love this book. It has a timeless message for young children about differences in the world, written in a way young children can understand. Not every child is free or safe or healthy or has the opportunity to go to school but every child needs and deserves the best world possible. I read this one with my kids many times over.
Do Not Open this Book by Michaela Muntean. Books about books encourage children to engage with reading, books and libraries and my kids loved this one with it’s dire warnings about turning the pages.
The Children Who Loved Books by Peter Carnavas. Peter is one of my favourite Oz illustrators and this book about a family that had too many books warms my heart and is more than a little familiar (See Where Does Thursday Go below). The family gave their books away and the world grew empty until they discovered the library.
Where Does Thursday Go by Janeen Brian and Stephen Michael King. Gorgeous Illustrations, an important question and a sensible answer. Once in the sheer stupidity of trying to downsize our book footprint, I tried to send this book to a charity book drive, only to have a 16 year-old rescue it and give me a lecture about keeping his favourite books.
Duck, Death and the Tulip by Wolf Erlbruch. The first picture book I bought for myself. I read a review and was intrigued. I discovered a whole new world view of picture books with wider messages for older readers.
The City by Armin Greer. I heard Armin Greder speak about this book at the Children’s Book Council Conference and what he said made me purchase it ‘on the spot’. It made me think then and it still does now.
Isabella’s Garden by Glenda Millard & Rebecca Cool. This picture book is a riot of colour and the story sings. yes it does. Music to a child’s ear and an author’s soul.
Sounds Spooky by Christopher Cheng and Sarah Davis. Sarah is one of my favourite illustrators so the artwork is fabulous. I like to read this story to kids when I’m babysitting because it’s a bit spooky but has a wonderful twist. The ghost is scared of the children. An empowering book to read to children who get a little scared at night.
Vampyre by Margret Wild and Andrew Yeo. When I heard about this book I had to have it. For me. A real vampire story written for children – a testament to the scope of writing for children. I love the ending. As the child vampire rejects his darkness and reaches for the light which welcomes him – does he die as legend promises or does he triumph? Young readers usually choose the latter but I am older and I think he died but happy because he had overcome his birth to be who he wanted to be.