I have come across some delightful children’s books about books. They have been given to me by my children – I think they have figured out that one of my many passions is children’s books. My mother told me it was about time I became a grandmother, but I have no control over that one. I enjoy the visits of young nieces and nephews and God-children. Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson is about Otto, who lives in a book, but when no one is looking he comes to life. This is when his real life begins – he explores the house, reads his favourite stories and practises his writing – on a typewriter! What happens to Otto when he gets left behind by his owners? He sets out on an adventure and discovers that it is pretty scary being very small and all alone. The illustrations are beautiful – the capture Otto perfectly – I love his little read bag.
It’s a Book by Lane Smith is quirky. When the book faces much competition from other more fancy gadgets – computers and ipads etc, it is easy to imagine that one day a child will have no idea what a book is or what you do with it. The book shows that the power of a book can still entice a non-reader to its pages so that it cannot be put down.
I would happily read both these books again and again – if I had a captive audience. Fortunately, I have my three year old niece Talia coming to stay in about ten days for four nights – her longest ever stay away from home.
A final book about books, this time it is for the parents. How I wish this book had been around when my children were begging me for a new book to read. This was a gift from my three children with this inscription: “Dear Mum, thank you so much for instilling in us a love of reading!” I can’t ask for much more than this can I?
1001 Children’s Books you must read before you grow up edited by Julia Eccleshare with a preface by Quentin Blake. This is for those parents who are serious about sharing books and reading with their children. It not only introduces you to good books, but also good authors – as it includes the titles of other books they have written. It is divided by age – 0-3, 3+, 5+, 8+, 12+. Each page has a colour illustration and a comprehensive description of the book. It includes so many books that we read as a family and others that I wish we had read. There is an index of titles, authors and illustrators. It is fantastic! Published by ABC Books and costs $65. If this is too expensive, you could always ask your local public library to purchase for their collection – you can then have it as a reference tool when taking the children to the library. 2012 is the National Year of Reading – this book will assist you to encourage your children to read and to want to choose to read.