Monday, September 27, 2010

Sing along

Let this happy love song make you smile and wiggle
while your eyes feast on an equally beautiful video,
"Do you love me" by Guster, directed by Chad Carlberg.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Neat-o Paper Perspective
Paper sculptor Jeff Nishinaka

Children's books 21.22

These two books always felt foreign to me, exotic and interesting.

Tales of Alyonushka is a delightful collection of homemade Russian folk tales by D. Mamin-Sibiryak, Alyonushka's father, which he tells to his daughter at bedtime. One eye sleeps and one ear listens as readers meet Stingy-Wingy-Long-Nose the Mosquito and Yasha the Cheerful Chimney Sweep.

My grandmother gave me this book when I was little. Hopsi by Susy Greiner, illustrated by Magda Moses, came with a doll you could stuff and sew. I loved the big hole in every page showing her face while each page had different outfits and scenes.

Lake Monster and the Noisy Alphabet

Lovely illustrations by Tom Gauld

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Children's books 18.19.20

I always pick books for their great illustrations, and I chose
these books as a group for their brilliant writing as well.

The Diary of a Church Mouse by Graham Oakley is one
of the few books that makes me laugh out loud. Humphrey's
charming personality clearly comes through in his diary
entries, the mice have great adventures, and the many
paintings have lots of details that are fun to pour over.
The book is also a great example of how words and
pictures should work together and not repeat each other.

a Balloon for a Blunderbuss by Bob Gill begins,
"I have a butterfly in my hands. What will you
give me for my butterfly?" And so begins a series of
great illustrations by Alastair Reid showing what one would
trade for this and that. The ending is the real gem of the story.

I didn't like Lucky Monkey Unlucky Monkey at first. There are
characters at the bottom of the pages who say little asides as an
adult might in a tone that is different from the story's narrator.
This didn't seem humorous or necessary and stood out as just a
gimmick to me. And as I read, I wondered what James Kaczman
was thinking when he wrote about how Ed the monkey had
all the beautiful luck in the world while Ted the monkey
had none. I changed my mind and fell in love with
the book when I read the last page.