Monday, December 23, 2013

Books I’m gifting to kids on my list this year

These books were gifts for nieces and nephews, ranging from 3-12, and I’ve already given them, so there’s no harm now in me sharing my choices here. Last-minute shoppers, if you’re hitting your bookstore and looking for ideas for great reads, you might want to look for these. (And what, I ask, is the purpose of school vacation, if not to read read read?) 

Use the links under each title to see if your nearby indie has them in stock. If not, you can order them. 

Picture books

Monstergarten by Daniel Mahoney, illustrated by Jef Kaminsky. Adorably funny and monstery. 
Petey and Pru and the Hullabaloo by A. J. Paquette, illustrated by Joy Ang. My kids (who are much older than the neices & nephews I gave this to) adored this book and read it over and over before wrapping it. A delightful, playful use of big, juicy words, and a great choice for a brother with a sister or a sister with a brother. 
Mr. Tiger Goes Wild by Peter Brown. How can I not gift a book about stripping one's clothes and roaring a bit? 
Big Mean Mike by Michelle Knudsen, illustrated by Scott Magoon. Really, really funny, and surprisingly fluffy, in the best of ways. Loved this. 
Please Bring Balloons by Lindsay Ward. I was delighted to find this beautiful, nostalgic, magical story, with such exquisite illustration. I'll be gifting this again. 
Very Hairy Bear by Alice Schertle, illustrated by Matt Phelan. Confession: I bought this book because I love Matt Phelan, but Alice Schertle's text is delightful. A winning combination. 
Library Lion, also by Michelle Knudsen, illustrated by Kevin Hawkes. Every child on my list gets a copy of this classic, and because I often forget when I've given this book or not, they often end up with two. 
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats. I always like to gift Keats, and if they're too young for John, we start them on Ezra Jack. Another classic every library needs. 


Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein. I fear I'm going to have to buy myself another because I didn't have time to read this. 
Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan. For more on how I love this book, visit this other blog post. This title was named Amazon's #1 Middle Grade title for 2013, and you should keep an eye on it come Newbery announcement time. 
The Real Boy by Anne Ursu. I'm hearing such good things about this title; may have to buy myself another one of these as well. 

The Nine Lives of Alexander Baddenfield by John Bemelmans Marciano, illustrated by Sophie Blackall. I own a copy that I haven't read yet, but the dark humor looks delicious. A perfect nephew book. 

If you gift them, read them first! Enjoy. 

Monday, December 16, 2013

Seven Superfluous Reasons to wrap All the Truth That’s in Me up with ribbon for someone you love

1. It’s shiny.

2. The cover has Christmas colors.

3. Mistletoe is romantic. So is the book. 

4. Sprinkle it with seeds and water, and it becomes a ChiaBook.

5. Before you wrap it, you can read it. She’ll never know unless you spill nacho crumbs.

6. It helps digest Christmas dinner. Flop on the couch with book and Tums.

7. “Crumbs” rhymes with “Tums.”

If you tweet a photo of your new book (at the store! coming out of the package!) and tell where you got it, I will mail you a signed bookplate, possibly smeared with salsa con queso.

 ¡Feliz Navidad! And happy shopping. Don’t forget to love your indie store.