Sunday, October 5, 2014

Children's Book Review With Fran Hawk

 I am excited to announce a new series I will run on Sundays with reviews of children's books.  I am such a book nerd and love sharing my joy of reading with the kids.  We have quite the book collection but I am always looking for new ones to add.

In comes Fran Hawk.  Fran Hawk is my sister in law's mother in law (try that for tongue twister) and one of the smartest, sharpest women I know.  She is a literary genius.  She is an author and used to write a column for the newspaper here in Charleston.  I cant say enough great things about her.  She knows her books so I know you will all love her recommendations too!  

I will let Fran take it away!

 Are you bored witless by the picture books you read to young children?  Do you comb through the library and bookstore shelves looking for children’s books that are actually interesting? You are not alone!     I just finished wading through a stack of new publications.  Out of about 50 new books for children, I only found a handful that I could recommend with my conscience intact.  Why and/or how do so many blah books get published.  I don't know.

Here are 4 of my favorites from the current crop:

 “Little Boo” by Stephen Wunderli is a gentle story for pre-schoolers about a pumpkin seed that wants to be scary.  It’s a challenge to add anything new to the slew of Halloween books already available, but “Little Boo” is original.  He has to wait through the seasons until he grows from a seed into a pumpkin.  As a jack o’ lantern, he is scary indeed.   

  “The Cat, the Dog, Little Red, the Exploding Eggs, the Wolf, and Grandma” by Diane and Christyan Fox is a new take on the familiar “Red Riding Hood” story for children ages 4-6.  As Cat tries to read the story aloud, Dog interrupts constantly.  He wants a plot filled with superheroes and special powers.  He questions motives and makes suggestions to “improve” the tale.  Hilarious!   

  “Hope Springs” by Eric Walters is a serious picture book for children ages 6-9.  It’s based on the true story of an orphanage in Kenya where drought threatened the lives of all living things.  This compelling book conveys the concepts of generosity and generosity of spirit in ways that deeply connect with children.    

 “Rags, Hero Dog of WW I: A True Story” by Margot Theis Raven is a riveting picture book written for children ages 6-10.  Rags is a stray little mutt who becomes a soldier’s best friend as World War I rages on French battlefields.  He courageously delivers messages from the front lines, and brings a bit of cheer to the fighting men.  Rags served in three major campaigns of WW I.  He saved many lives and was inducted in the Legion of Hero Dogs.     

These books are a start to banishing boring

.Fran Hawk


Sweet Southern Prep said...

This is so neat, Natalie! Great idea, and I'm so excited to get some new reads for the kiddos! Thanks, Fran!

kater said...

Fantastic idea! I love getting recs for children's books as I've certainly purchased my fair share of duds. Off to order "Little boo" now!

Ashley said...

What a great idea! We are always looking for new book recs!

Unknown said...

The books you are recommending sounds really interesting, i will find them for my kid.

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Anonymous said...

This is great! I am always looking for good, quality books for my son. And I think I know Fran...was she a librarian in Mt. Pleasant for a few years at an elementary school? Anywho, great series!! :)

Aimee said...

I love that you plan to make this a regular post! I am always on the lookout for fun/new books for my boys.

fep516 said...

You must get BJ Novak's (from The Office) new kids book - The Book with No Pictures. It is SO clever and my daughter just rolls with laughter every time I read it!