I went to the library! And I checked out ALL the books! Well, twelve of them, really, which seems like a lot– too much, even– but my neighborhood branch has a self-checkout station, and no one stopped me. I high-tailed it out of there really quick in case anyone tried. It’s kind of amazing that you can just walk into a place, grab as many books as you want and take them home for weeks. For free. We’re kind of lucky like that. Yay, libraries!
So here’s my big stack of reading booty for July:You may notice, if you are the noticing type, that 8 out of 12 books are by authors whose names begin with “B”. That’s as far as I got before I started feeling like a book-hog. Then I made a special foray to the “S” section to get some Maurice Sendak, and grabbed another title that was particularly appealing: There are Cats in this Book by Viviane Schwarz. This is possibly the best book I’ve ever read (this week.) It follows three cats– Tiny, Moonpie, and Andre– as they play with yarn, boxes, pillows, and fish. It’s got nifty die-cut pages and the illustrations are cleverly interactive. I highly recommend it. Also, the cats are *totes adorbs.*
Also on the highly recommended list, (and also featuring yarn) is Extra Yarn written by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Jon Klassen, who is my latest illustrator/writer crush. You may know him from I Want My Hat Back and This Is Not My Hat. Here’s a link to some videos where a couple of folks discuss the awesomeness of Extra Yarn and even read the whole thing to you. The video at the bottom is Jon and Mac giving acceptance speeches for an award for the book. They are funny, wise, and inspiring. I love them.
Other favorites in July’s book stack are the two by Melissa’s writer/illustrator crush, Peter Brown*: Chowder and The Fabulous Bouncing Chowder. In the midst of my book-grabbing frenzy I did not realize that I actually own the first one– an autographed copy that Melissa got for me at the conference in NJ last month. The inscription reads: “To Angie, Find your Bulldog! Peter Brown” Ooh-la-la! He knows my name! I might also have a crush on Peter Brown. I definitely have a crush on Chowder, his bulldog/protagonist.
And since I made a special trip to the S’s for the Maurice Sendaks, (hoping to snag a copy of Where The Wild Things Are, which wasn’t there, boo) I must speak a little on his works. They are odd. Not bad odd, just… odd. In The Night Kitchen is rather well-known, and I adore the pantry-city in the background… but the writing is… well, odd. Sendak is a master at evoking a nonsensical dreamland, and he does it yet again in We Are All In The Dumps with Jack and Guy (two nursery rhymes with pictures by M.S.) , which might be flavored with a bit o’ socio-political commentary, addressing poverty and homelessness… It’s probably the oddest book I’ve read all week.
So I guess I’ve rattled on enough about this stack of books. Next month I’m going to see what they’ve got under “C” and maybe work my way around the library in an alphabetical fashion.
So tell me, gentle readers, have you read any other books by the authors I’ve mentioned and/or do you recommend any that I should check out on my next trip (preferably by authors beginning with “C”)?
*Ahem, the author of this post bears no familial or marital relation to Mr. Peter Brown. All similarities in surnames are purely coincidental.