For our “read aloud” this week we started Clementine by Sara Pennypacker illustrated by Marla Frazee. The book is narrated by a plunky third grader that finds herself in trouble more than once every day. She has a very different personality than my daughter, and from time to time Smarty begs me to stop reading, because she can envision the results of Clementine’s new “brilliant idea”. But then she begs to keep reading again. I find the book very funny and somewhat similar to Ramona’s series by Beverly Cleary. Definitely worth to look the series up in your local public library!
I kept The Paper Dragon by Marguerite. W. Davol for Valentine’s Day even though the book is not your regular cute Valentine’s Day fare. It’s gorgeously illustrated by one of my favorite illustrators Robert Sabuda and tells the story of courage and inventiveness. As can be expected, the story is set in China where the main character is expected to perform three tasks to put a fearsome dragon back to sleep. Why did we read it on Valentine’s Day? Read it yourself to find out, but the story is more appropriate in length and content for 5+ children.
As you might have noticed, my daughter loves non-fiction book, and she was very fascinated by How a Book is Made by Aliki. Unfortunately, the book is written almost 25 years ago, and I suspect that the process of book making changed quite a bit since then. For example, an author in the book is typing her book on an old-fashioned typewriter, and not on a computer. Still, it was a good read and made a point that the book is made not just by an author and illustrator but by many other people as well.
Finally, I wanted to share chapter book series for (relatively) new readers called Cork and Fuzz by Dori Chaconas/Lisa McCue. I was attracted by unusual main characters of a muskrat and a possum and the fact that the first story reminded me strongly of Frod and Toad. The reading level is about 1st or early 2nd grade, which is too easy for my daughter, but the story is engaging, and she by now went through all the books.