Thursday, September 15, 2011

Friday Five: Child's Play

Most of the books I focus on for 1600 Words A Day are either young adult or adult books about young adults, but a friend of mine recently asked for recommendations for audiobooks he could listen to with his 5 year old daughter; after they finish Harry Potter, of course. I had so much fun coming up with recommendations for him, I feel compelled to share them with you in case you have a munchkin you want to read to or if you just want to get in touch with your inner child.

  1. Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein. Children's books should not only be written beautifully, but they should sound beautiful when read aloud, and what could be more appropriate than poetry for that? Deep cut: Love That Dog by Sharon Creech. Both have illustrations and are great for getting reluctant poets interested in poetry.
  2. Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls. This is another one of those lovely books that is also wonderful to listen to. Be warned, it is a dog story and it doesn't end well for the doggies, so if you have a very sensitive munchkin within you or beside you, have a warm hug at the ready.
  3. Judy Blume's Fudge books: Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, Superfudge, you name it. No, they're not lyrically beautiful, but they are hilarious and the universal appeal of booger jokes and potty humor will go over well with little boys and little girls.
  4. James Howe's Bunnicula books: Bunnicula, The Celery Stalks at Midnight, Howliday Inn, etc. James Howe was onto the vampire trend before there was a scene, and he blended it with adorable vegan animals. How awesome is that? Pretty darn awesome and funny.
  5. I have a tie for #5 because I know both my choices for this slot are controversial: Roald Dahl's books, particularly The Witches (oooh! I love The Witches!) and C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia. I know some people think Roald Dahl was a crusty old grump who secretly hated children and they might even be right, but kids love his books, and if something is funny, I laugh. His books make me laugh a lot---I mean like embarrassing full nose involvement laugh. You can't just deny something like that. As for C.S. Lewis, I was raised in an atheist home, and have continued maintaining my own atheist home, but I loved The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe and The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. They're wonderful, fantastic voyages and adventures. Also, most of the christianity is lost on the munchkins anyway, so if that's not your thing, they're still safe.