Greetings, gentle readers! With the cooler weather upon us, I'm finding quite a bit more time for reading, which is always a great thing, right? So today I share two books -- one that gripped me from the first page, and one that is a very old favorite.
So imagine a large, foreboding tree -- planted so close to a big house that its limbs have grown into the walls -- a tree with axe handles embedded in it from past futile attempts to destroy it. Now imagine the family living within the house -- all powerless to resist the tree's temptation -- and slowly withering under the tree's spell.
What's the tree's spell? Well, of course I'm not going to tell you. But I will tell you that you 9-14 year olds will be simply spellbound by Jonathan Auxier's The Night Gardener: A Scary Story. And I will tell you this: this ghost story-fantasy-adventure all rolled into one is a page-turner from the very beginning. You'll meet orphan siblings Molly and Kip and hold your breath as Molly starts to figure out the secret of the old tree. That's all I'm going to say. Just read it...if you dare!
I stumbled upon one of my favorite storytime books a few days ago: Don Freeman's beloved classic Corduroy. This is the story of a stuffed bear who has lived far too long on the shelves of a department store, waiting to be chosen by a little boy or girl. When Corduroy realizes he's missing a button, he goes on quite the adventure to find it. Why, just think of all the adventures a little stuffed bear could have in a big department store!
Corduroy was first published in 1968, but it's in no way outdated. The illustrations perfectly capture Corduroy's wonderment and awe as he discovers many new things.
My favorite illustration is this one. Again, I'm not going to tell you what happens, but I promise you'll love this as much as I do.
So there you have it, friends. Just a couple of recommendations perfect for this stay-in-the-house weather.