Friday, March 22, 2013

Kids' books

Yes, my reading tastes are very eclectic although I prefer stories with happy endings, lol.  For some reason, a batch of kids' books came through and I offered to review several of them for various reasons (yes, there is some logic to it even though I don't have children!)

One of these days I will learn French so that I can at least hold a rudimentary conversation when I finally make it to Paris (one of these days!).  After all, I will have to be able to ask for those sinfully delicious croissants and pastries and I suppose I will have to find my way to the beautiful tourist attractions (although my husband recently told me that he heard about some study which says that the number one thing that women think about is food--no points for knowing what the number one thing the study says that men think about, lol).  Sorry, I digress, as usual. 


I was intrigued by the idea of a children's book entitled, My French Sticker Dictionary and thought I'd try it out.  I was entertained by the cute pictures and delighted by the attempts to help with pronunciation (who'd thought that l' ecureuil is said 'leh-kooray'?  It means squirrel, btw) but I think that it would be a little confusing trying to figure out some of the translations if I was too young to understand about looking for the word list in the back and just depended on the pictures (especially the one for le beurre...'leh ber' which means butter).  I understand that this was just to give a smattering of words which were arranged on pages of similarities such as things you would find in the kitchen but I still think it was confusing and think that the English and French forms of the words should be on the appropriate page.  Nonetheless, I love stickers and I thought that this was a fun way to learn a few words.

The Three Little Pigs pop-up book delighted me for awhile because I am fascinated by the engineering that goes into making a piece of paper stand up and help tell a story.  I amused my self by partially opening and the closing the pages just to watch the buildings and characters change their shape (yes, I get distracted sometimes) and it is still fascinating to watch, especially to a person who has trouble creating an aerodynamic paper airplane.  This is a fun book but naturally any young child reading it has to be supervised closely because it won't take much to bend one of the figures the wrong way and destroy its pop-up capabilities.


Richard Scarry's All the Colors of Busytown is a very cute board book that helps introduce little ones to nine colors.  The characters are very busy animals who endeavor to help children identify commonplace things in characteristic colors and the tabs help set the various colors apart.  My only concern is that the tabs can be accidentally bent if the book is left open and sat on (ok, that tells you about the kinds of kids I watch with books).  This is a cute vibrant book.


And finally, Too Small for my Big Bed, is a cute story about a tiger cub named Piper who keeps finding excuses to sleep in his Mommy's bed.  I was attracted to the story because I have a niece named Pieper and it made me think of her but I thought it was a great tale of a way to gently encourage independence.  I love tigers and that was a wonderful bonus to the story because the illustrations are beautifully drawn.

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