There has been a lot of talk around the web ring lately about favorite children's books. I have enjoyed reading everyone's choices, nodding in agreement and savoring the memories of discovery. The joy of books is a wonderful passion to have. Somehow I am not surprised that a group of artists would also love books, since they open the doors to imagination in the way they do.
Choosing a only a few favorites has left me paralyzed with indecision, so instead of a list I will show a few at a time in an open ended fashion, giving some time to think about and appreciate each one.
I have been a long time fan of Maurice Sendak. (Read more here.)Long ago, I delighted in the drawings for the sweet Little Bear stories (Elsa Holmelund Minarik) and later Where The Wild Things Are,
In The Night Kitchen, and Outside Over There. I read these stories over and over to my neices and nephews and later, to my son. For a time in our lives, we would recite the "wild things" book together from memory.
William Steig is another favorite author. I always think of "Sylvester and the Magic Pebble" (1969)
Another all time favorite: Ezra Jack Keats. I love his artistic style, so much expression conveyed in the bright simple shapes of his illustrations.
And I have bittersweet memories of reading "Peter's Chair" right about the time we were thinking about moving our son to his "big boy" bed so we could pass the crib to his little sister. I seem to remember buying and painting a small chair.
One final entry for today, a memory of enchantment from my own childhood. This one was a Newberry winner, published in 1958. "The Witch of Blackbird Pond" by Elizabeth George Speare.