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Sunday Book Review

January 10th, 2021

Woof and meow πŸ’œ

(“Oh, Puppy” — photo by Nancy Ellen Row Rawley)

“Fern and Otto: A Story About Two Best Friends,” by Stephanie Graegin (Schwartz & Wade Books, New York, 2020, $17.99). Introducing a bear and a cat who are friends, and go for a walk in the woods. This is a book within a book within another book, as Fern writes a story, Otto helps, and away they go. They find a tortoise, racing a hare; a cool girl wearing a red cape; a little chicken “hit on her noggin!” and some other friends. Creative and fun, and the art is mesmerizing, with lots of tiny details and big splashes for the kids to study.

It has come to my attention that many of you are still remote distance learning with the big and little kids at home. Bless your hearts. It’s not going to last forever, I promise, but we’re in the weeds for now.

Time to get creative and think outside (or inside, in this case) the box. Random House Children’s Books just released “The Reading House,” a new box set reading program for ages 4-8 ($14.99 apiece). An instruction guide for parents is included. The series starts with letter recognition, moves into phonemics and stretches out into full reading comprehension. Keep them engaged however you can, give yourself some grace, and stay hydrated, people. Don’t forget to get out for some fresh air every day, too.

Here’s a sweet new picture book: “Wonderful You,” written by Lisa Graff, illustrated by Ramona Kaulitzki (Philomel Books, 2020, $17.99). This one made me miss being pregnant, miss my husband playing the guitar for the babies while they were growing inside, miss the love you can only get from a grimy, smiling, sweaty toddler. My goodness. This is why older folks smile at you so wistfully, new parents, and say, “Enjoy every minute, it goes so fast.” And you… you haven’t had a shower or eaten a decent, real meal in days, and you don’t know what you’re doing, and you’re feeling frantic…

It all gets easier, and harder, and better, and scarier. These moments become the sweetest moments ever and will bring you to tears. You’ll have plenty of other beautiful moments, but those early ones? Ahhh… I know. The days go slow/but the years go fast.

Now where was I, with my misty-eyed self? From “Wonderful You”:

“When you were a mango, we worked while you grew — we fixed and we folded and waited for you.”

All of the different stages of a baby’s growth are compared to the sizes of fruits and veggies — peas, lemons, an eggplant — and a variety of different parents and families are represented. Just a sweet book — enjoy.

Stephen Johnson hits it out of the park with “Music Is…” a great big fancy picture book, all about the different genres of music. “Every music has its own soul… It doesn’t matter what style it is, just be true to it.” — Ray Charles

Classical, Latin, jazz, country and heavy metal, hip hop, rock and roll, rhythm and blues, electronica! and pop. You can read this one forwards, backwards, and opened up — the design is really user friendly.

Splash, bang and pop. (Simon & Schuster, 2020, $24.99). Be sure you share this one with the kids, and don’t just keep it for yourself.

Bon appetit, stay safe, wash your hands and wear a mask. Try not to cough or sneeze on people. That’s all I got. :)

Leave a note if you stop by, I’d love to hear from you.

WM

1 Comment »

  1. ν›„λΆˆμΆœμž₯ says

    ν›„λΆˆμΆœμž₯

    Wacky Mommy

    January 19th, 2021 | #

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