As a break from the recent posts on “overprotecting” our children, I thought it would be fun to share three of the books we’ve received as gifts recently and enjoy immensely. Gifting books is one of my favorite things to do and it is always hoped that the literature will delight the beneficiaries as much as the givers. If you decide to give these a try, I hope you find the stories and illustrations as enchanting as we do!
The Night Gardener, written and illustrated by the Fan Brothers, piques my little Petunia’s curiosity about what happens during the night when all others are sleeping. I feel like it displaces the often feared anxiety of nighttime unknowns and replaces it with a calming affection for the surrounding nature and those who secretly do good within our communities. The illustrations are stunning and a bit of a throwback. I also can’t help but love the affinity the illustrator clearly has for stray cats and laced dress shoes!
What Do You Do With an Idea?, written by Kobi Yamada and illustrated by Mae Besom, is perhaps one of the most charming picture books I’ve come across in a long time. For any child (or adult) struggling with confidence or patience, this book subtly follows an idea, in the form of an egg, from first glimmer to glorious fruition with all the hurdles and insecurities in between. This one was gifted to us a few years ago, but I always bring it out when I notice Petunia needs assurance in her endeavors.
The Branch, written by Mireille Messier and illustrated by Pierre Pratt, thoughtfully explores the heartbreak, and often anger, children often feel when something important to them is lost. Young readers are encouraged to creatively problem solve and see the potential for something new. I feel the added bonuses in this story are the lead-in to recycling, a gentle nod to hand crafters and the blossoming intergenerational friendship between neighbors.
Are you a book gifter? What are some of your favorites to share with other families? If you have read or decide to read any of the above, what were your impressions?