One of the most delightful benefits of becoming a parent has been rediscovering the joy of picture books. We visit our local library regularly and return home with stacks of children’s books to ensure that our routine of a story and a bottle before bed each night doesn’t get too repetitive. We read about everything from firefighters to fractured fairy tales, princesses to pigs. A few have stood out as clear favorites and today, in celebration of Young Readers Day, I share five of those favorites with you. I also encourage you to visit your own local library and check them out (with or without young readers in tow)!
1. Cinder Edna Written By Ellen Jackson and Illustrated By Kevin O’Malley
“Once upon a time there were two girls who lived next door to each other. Cinder Edna was forced to work for her wicked stepmother and stepsisters, just as her neighbor, Cinderella, was. Edna, on the other hand, had learned a thing or two from doing all that housework, such as how to make tuna casserole sixteen different ways and how to get spots off everything from rugs to ladybugs. And she was strong and spunky and knew some good jokes. Then one day the king announced that he would give a ball . . .”
2. Mousetronaut Written By Astronaut Mark Kelly and Illustrated By C.F. Payne
“Mousetronaut tells the story of a small mouse that wants nothing more than to travel to outer space. The little mouse works as hard as the bigger mice to show readiness for the mission . . . and is chosen for the flight! While in space, the astronauts are busy with their mission when disaster strikes—and only the smallest member of the crew can save the day.”
3. Hilda Must Be Dancing Written By Karma Wilson and Illustrated By Suzanne Watts
“Hilda Hippo loves to dance! But there’s just one problem. When Hilda dances, it sounds like this:
Ka-bump! Ka-bump! Crash! Crash! Crash!
Boom! Bang! Bash!
The other animals beg her to find a quieter hobby. Knitting? Singing?
For Hilda, nothing else will do. What could possible be as fun as dancing?”
4. The Gruffalo Written By Julia Donaldson and Illustrated By Axel Scheffler
“A mouse is taking a stroll through the deep, dark wood when along comes a hungry fox, then an owl, and then a snake. The mouse is good enough to eat but smart enough to know this, so he invents . . . the gruffalo! As Mouse explains, the gruffalo is a creature with terrible claws, and terrible tusks in its terrible jaws, and knobbly knees and turned-out toes, and a poisonous wart at the end of its nose. But Mouse has no worry to show. After all, there’s no such thing as a gruffalo. . .
5. Bumpus Jumpus Dinosaurumpus Written By Tony Mitten and Illustrated By Guy Parker-Rees
“The dinosaurs are gathering from all over the swamp, and they’re ready to create a rumpus. But what’s this? Terrifying Tyrannosaurus is about to gatecrash the party. Will he eat them all?”