children's books Archive
"Count the Monkeys" by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Kevin Cornell. Ages 3-6. Disney Hyperion. $16.99. It's a simple job. All Mac Barnett wants you to do is count the monkeys -- how hard can that be? Never mind the king cobra who scared the monkeys away, and the mongooses (or is it mongeese?) who scared the cobra away, or the crocodiles, or the bears, or the bees ...
So many different kinds of dark exist: the light-speckled dark of a starry sky, the inescapable dark of the deep sea, the threatening dark of a basement at night, the dreamy dark of closed eyelids as you slip into sleep.
You may think you have holiday problems, but at least you don’t have to find an appropriate Hanukkah gift for a scelidosaurus or tamp down an elf revolt. Indeed, standard holiday woes of too few shopping days and too many fruitcakes hardly matter in comparison. So relax, have a sip of eggnog and share one of these picture books with a loved one for a fresh perspective on the holidays.
Spoiler alert: The children in Adam Gidwitz’s books live happily ever after.
Halloween is just around the corner, which means there are monsters galore, lurking in the woods, under beds, and in the local bakery (buying jelly doughnuts, as it happens). But how to cope with them? Courage, kisses and a bit of old-fashioned gratitude, according to the prescriptions offered by three new picture books.
Once in a great while, the muses of children’s literature get together, have a few too many cocktails, get a serious case of the giggles, and come up with something so brilliant it changes the genre for good.
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