Ella likes books (perhaps it’s my daily threats to turn her out on the street if she doesn’t like books?). She smiles and kicks her feet and looks at both pages very intently. Even when she’s particularly grumpy, she’ll settle right down and pay attention to a number of books in a row. It should not surprise you that we do quite a lot of reading around these parts.
I’ve quickly developed favorites and those are the ones I go for again and again when I read to her. And as I was thinking about possibly sharing the ones I like best, Lady Susan suggested that I do so and, well, that was all the encouragement I needed. . .
So, without further ado, a few board books I love. And we can all pretend Ella loves too. It’s not like she can tell me I’m wrong.
Piggies is, perhaps, my very favorite board book. It’s such an excellent mix of big bright images, and hilarious little details. I like the lap-size version because it makes the hands just about life-size and the piggies easier to see. Although, since I do most reading to Ella lying on the floor, holding the book above us, I live in fear of dropping this heavy thing on her face.
Animals Talk, along with Counting, are new to me. They only have five pages, each with the animal above a single word and a close up pattern on the opposite side. They are bright and colorful and a quick book before a nap. I can elaborate, or I can just read the five words and be done. Really, what more can you ask for? (A million dollars).
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? is a total classic, of course, and for good reason. The illustrations are so bright and clean, the rhyme scheme is delightful, and it’s a nice length. My brothers loved this book, so much so that, more than a decade later, I can still recite the whole thing from memory. It’s a keeper.
I love Doreen Cronin and Betsy Lewin’s book and Click, Clack, 123
is no exception. My library mentor gave me this one and also Click, Clack, ABC, which I like but not quite as much as 123. The drawings are so fun and sweet, with lots of white space, which, I’ve discovered, is really important to me in a book.
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt is a favorite from my childhood. I love Helen Oxenbury’s illustrations and the design of the book itself delights me, with the illustrations alternating between black and white and color, full page spreads, and multiple panels on some pages.
Good Night, Gorilla makes me laugh. It has sparse text and rich colors and in board book format, the pages just shine. Funny and sweet, I love this book.
I have fallen completely in love with Sandra Boynton. The kindergarten teacher at one of my schools gave me Pajama Time! and it’s among my very favorites. Bart and I both find ourselves singing the words – it’s so ridiculously catchy. It’s fun to have a riotously loud book to read to your little baby. I also really enjoy her Moo Baa La La La.
Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes is just a few years old, but it has the feel of a classic. I love Helen Oxenbury’s bright, clean illustrations and the text of this book is so sweet and beautiful. This is a perfect baby shower book.