Ahhhh, the holidays! Some of us are still scrambling for the perfect gift and most of us have a strange tendency to ignore the best gifts of all: BOOKS!
Why are books the best gifts?
Because the way to encourage your loved ones to read is to share books! Let them know that you read and that you value books SO MUCH that you picked out one (or more) very special book(s) just for them.
Because you need to share your love of books by letting people know that they are cool enough to be gifts. Chosen, wrapped and placed just for them. Books aren’t just cool enough, but maybe even the best damn gift ever. (Granted, it may take some of us years and years to reflect back and realize that reading Man’s Search for Meaning or Charlotte’s Web or The Power of One or any of a billion other books actually contributed to the formation of our very lives, but still.)
Because only we humans have the capacity to learn from others by reading! The only thing that differentiates those that can read and those who cannot is this: Reading! (The quote often attributed to Mark Twain is: “The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.”) So what are you waiting for?
Because we learn about the world by reading! We learn to know ourselves and others by reading. We learn about other parts of the world, other cultures, and other ideas that we might not otherwise have access to.
For now, here is a short list of some of my favorite children’s books:
- On the Day You Were Born by Debra Frasier
- One Morning in Maine by Robert McCloskey
- The Nutmeg Princess by Richardo Keens-Douglas
- ¡Pío Peep! Rimas Tradicionales en Español by Alma Flor Ada y F. Isabel Campoy
- Stella Luna by Janell Cannon
- See the Ocean by Estelle Condra
- Little Owl’s Night by Divya Srinivasan
- New Shoes for Silvia by Johanna Hurwitz
- Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen
- Trombone Shorty by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews
- I Love You Through and Through by Bernadette Rossetti Shustak and Caroline Jayne Church
- The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse one of Aesop’s Fables retold by Helen Ward
- How the Moon Regained Her Shape by Janet Ruth Heller
- I Love You, Little One by Nancy Tafuri
- Ruby Sings the Blues by Niki Daly
- Tia’s Tamales by Ana Baca
- My Name Is Georgia: A Portrait by Jeanette Winter
- Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch
- Horton Hatches the Egg by Dr. Seuss
- Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss
- Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! by Mo Willems
This next one is NOT a book for children but a hilarious book for any adult that has ever tried (or plans to try) to get a kid to bed: Go The F**k to Sleep by Adam Mansbach.
I’ll be adding more books (including links to Spanish and bilingual versions) and organizing the lists soon. Please share your favorites with me in the comments below! Also check out my Resources page for more recommendations.
I hope that books find a way into your gift-giving scheme of things, for the holidays and throughout the year. Happy reading!