Seasonal Children's Lit

Spooky Boo, A Halloween Adventure by Lily Karr

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So. Stinkin’. Cute. Talk about making Halloween ideas and characters kid-friendly! This book is 110% baby-approved. All the monsters, witches, and ghosties are super smiley and adorable. It may be short, but there is a fun little surprise on each page. The story is interactive; the reader looks in mirrors, opens door flaps, touches sticky “goo”, and parties with the monsters at the end. The story flows nicely, too, with the reader walking through each room in a haunted house.

I believe this book was gifted to my son, but even if we had purchased it ourselves it would have been well worth it! I saw the price on the back cover, and it is very affordable interactive board book at $7. Way to go, Scholastic!

I always loved going to the Scholastic Book Fair when I was a student; one of the highlights of the school year. What are some of your favorite buys from the book fair? On that subject, I was speaking with an acquaintance in my writers’ group (she’s a successful picture book author), and she teared up when she saw a book of hers at a school book fair. Even though she regularly does school visits, she still got emotional! To see our work out in the world and appreciated, that is the greatest reward to a writer. . . . at least, that’s what I believe to be true.

Llama Llama Trick or Treat by Anna Dewdney

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Llama Llama has become a very popular children’s series. And what’s not to love? Adorable illustrations, animal characters (not so commonly-used creatures, too!), relatable childish behavior displayed by main character, and fun rhymes!

This board book was gifted to my infant son (by my cousin), and it has all the elements that make it a quick, enjoyable read. I say “quick” with a positive connotation, because my baby doesn’t sit still for very long. Storytime has got to have a lively pace, because if a page has too much text, he turns past before I’m done reading aloud. Silly boy! Someday he’ll learn to appreciate the words just as much, if not more, than the pictures.

The 13 Nights of Halloween by Guy Vasilovich

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First of all, these illustrations hit me in the face with awesomeness, so kudos to Guy Vasilovich, author AND illustrator! The story is patterned after the ultra-classic, “12 Days of Christmas” song, but the author’s twist is hilarious. Don’t worry about the content being too dark or scary for little ones, Guy found just the right amount of funny to combo with the Halloween theme. Truly, the text tickled me and made me chuckle!

Lots of reasons to love this book: unique artwork, familiar and lyrical text, laugh-out-loud funny, and (bonus) alliteration! Who doesn’t love a good book with alliteration? I know I do! As a parent and teacher, it makes reading aloud EXTRA fun!

I ran across my copy of “The 13 Nights of Halloween” randomly. My infant son and I had completed the local library’s summer reading goal, so we “won” a prize out of the toy chest. I am so pleased I picked this one out of the prize box. It caught my eye, because my husband absolutely adores Halloween. He goes totally nuts for it every year! Our house and costumes get more elaborate every year!!

I love reading seasonal and holiday books. Some of my fondest childhood memories are reading Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter books with my mom. At the start of each holiday season, we would go to the library and check out a stack of books themed for the season! Those are wonderful times I will treasure forever while creating new book-reading memories with my son!

What is your favorite holiday to read about? Tell me some of your seasonal picks!

Biscuits Visits the Pumpkin Patch by Alyssa Satin Capucilli

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Biscuit is a popular children’s lit character who is so sweet and fun to share with children and emerging readers. Well, this story in particular is part of a board book series that brings wholesome, simplistic stories to babies and toddlers. What a nice way to introduce little ones to the cutie-pie puppy who can cause a little mischief.

I will admit this is short review, like a mini-review, but it’s a very short, uncomplicated story. A little girl takes her puppy to a pumpkin patch and tells him different things they are going to do with the gourd they pick out. Biscuit gets a little rambunctious and messy, but he finds a couple friends along the way!

So, straightforward story and easy read, but that is a perfect recipe for a baby board book.

Tree by Britta Teckentrup

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Tree written and illustrated by Britta Teckentrup is such a beautiful book that I LOVE to read aloud to my son. Her rhymes will push new readers to grow their vocabulary (which is one of the many reasons we read!). The art style is distinguished and lovely, and the story follows a satisfying, circular plot as we witness the changing seasons. So much happens to (and around!) 1 tree and 1 owl in 1 year. The owl seems to be the observer of the forest, but the story is chock-full of animals and plants. The reader views all this growth, change and variety of nature with unique peek-through pages.

What’s your favorite season? Why? I’m completely cold-natured and LOVE vacationing in warm, sunny places like the beach. BUT, I gotta say my favorite season is winter. I’m a January-baby (and like any proper lady we celebrate the whole birth month), but more importantly I’m obsessed with Christmas!! Sorry, if my book review got derailed. I’m just being authentic. I hope you are authentic, too.

You Are My Merry by Marianne Richmond

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This was the first Christmas gift I bought my baby. We LOVE Marianne Richmond! A friend gifted me Bedtime Blessings at my baby shower, too.
The incredibly talented Marianne is both author and illustrator to a huge selection of picture books each one to leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy! This Christmas-themed story is special to my little family, because our last name is “Merry”.

With fun, rhyming prose and lighthearted illustrations, Marianne drives home the simple message of unconditional love. She has nailed the emotional perspective of a parent. The love we have for our children is boundless, and this sweet story shows how even simple holiday activities are bursting with familial joy!

What is your favorite holiday tradition? Does your family do something out of the ordinary? What about a special Christmas story you read every year?