Off the Shelf

It’s summer, and we’re barely breathing.  Swimming, picnicking, playing with friends.  And then there are the trips to the library.

Oh yeah.  It’s summer reading time, and hello, selection.

  
So many books!  So many colors…so many words…so many silly pictures.  (Quick side note: how insanely amazing is it that in our country we have access to this kind of awesomeness for free? Talk about wealth! When I count my blessings, this is in the top ten, easy.)  

How do you even choose? 

If you’re anything like me, you walk in, herd the kids through the fun of admiring the fish in the tank and playing for a few minutes on the computers and then you grab some books randomly off the shelf and get yourself home.

Please tell me you’re something like me.

My older kids are getting pretty good at browsing for themselves now, but this is stil my go-to move with the six-year-old. And believe me, we have brought home some seriously weird books with this method.

  
Can I be honest and say that I’d rather not have any books that are trying to teach my kids things?  I mean, I want my kids to be brave, but could we at least be a little subtle about it?

Also, I’d like to confess that I avoid ones that remind me of old Coke commercials.

  
But! Now that I don’t have to spend every second of library time worrying about where my kids have gotten off to, I have time to browse the shelves more thoroughly.  So I thought in the next few weeks I would bring you a few true gems that I found by just randomly pulling things off the shelf.  This week I have two great ones for you.

Ready? Here we go.  

  

Have you seen these Pig in a Wig books?  This is my first, though apparently it’s a series? It’s an early reader, and I’m super excited to have Lucy read it.  Because it really is simple, but it’s also fun.  If you haven’t taught anyone to read lately, you can’t know how rare that is.

Check it out:  

See? Simple.  But with each, page, more silly rhyming things get in the boat.

  

And it keeps going, getting more silly and wonderful with each page.  This one is a winner.

Next up:  

I mean, the title.  The warning at the bottom.  I’m already hooked.  But then you open the cover.

  

It’s like Wes Anderson made a book for kids.  The trees in the dome! The stowaways in the water tank!  And any book that uses the word “larder” is  book for me.

  

A nice Star Trekish adventure done in this psuedo comic book style makes for a book that entertains my older kids as well as the youngest.  I hesitate to admit it, but the story itself barely matters at this point.  Though a story about searching for mystic space nuts is bound to be pretty good.

Go online and reserve these ones now, and they’ll be waiting on a shelf with your name on them the next time you herd your littles through the library.  Because technology rocks. 

And we’ll be back next week with a few more gems.  And the week after that.  And the week after that.  

And then the kids will go back to school. And we’ll all take a deep breath.  
  

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