In My Library Tote: February Children's Book Reviews

You would think that with as many days as Jona was off school for snow days in February, the stack of books we read together would be high. We did read a few, but I admit that there were probably more movies watched than normal, rather than books read. Part of that was because it was mostly Aaron home with the kids, and he’s not as excited about read-alouds as I am, and partly it was because veering from the normal schedule is a challenge. I’m looking forward to some normalcy around here. Anyway, here’s what we read in February.

{The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat} This adorable story is about Beekle, who lives in the land of imaginary friends. He gets tired of waiting for a child to choose him, so he decides to go out into the world and find his friend. It is gorgeously illustrated, and a really sweet story about friendship. Not so sweet though that my superhero-loving 5-year-old boy didn’t enjoy it too. This one was the favorite from last month.

{Charlotte Jane Battles Bedtime by Myra Wolfe} Charlotte Jane, the daughter of pirates, has “formidable oomph.” She wants to get all the juice out of life, but she hates bedtime because it just isn’t juicy. She decides to give it up, eventually winning the battle against sleep, but the next day she realizes that her oomph has gone missing. Can she find it? Jona really enjoyed this one, especially when Charlotte Jane’s parents were searching all over for her oomph, even looking in their neighbor’s recycle bin. That cracked him up.

{Bear and Wolf by Daniel Salmieri} A bear and a wolf both go out walking in the woods on a winter day. They meet by chance and enjoy the quiet winter woods together. The illustrations in this book are gorgeous, and while I wasn’t sure at first that Jona would like it, I think he found it relaxing. Here’s why I wasn’t sure it was a book for him: when the bear and wolf first spot each other, I asked him what he thought would happen next. True to what he’s been reading/watching more than anything lately--superheroes--he said “they’re gonna fight each other!” with excitement. (Sigh.) Not exactly, kid. He did still appreciate the story. As much as he loves his superheroes, he’s a gentle soul at heart.

{Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty} We read and loved Ada Twist, Scientist last year so I knew Jona would also enjoy Rosie Revere. I love the message of this book that encourages children to rethink failure. I found it particularly fitting for my little Lego-engineer who sometimes wants to quit his building project when it doesn’t fit together the way he wants it to. I want to encourage his creativity and persistence, and books like this one help do just that. There is also a chapter book series with this same character (Rosie Revere and the Raucous Riveters is the first installment) and I’m very curious to check that out as well.

Have you read any good children’s books lately? What do you like to read at the end of winter? 

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