Monday, January 20, 2020

The Ten Most Recent Additions to My (Son's) Bookshelf

I'm linking up with That Artsy Reader Girl for another Top Ten Tuesday.

I'm pretty sure this week's topic is referring to books on an actual bookshelf, but since I rarely acquire physical books anymore I thought about reprising the topic of recent additions to my TBR list. However, I am constantly adding physical books to my son's bookshelf — plus he got lots of new books for Christmas and his birthday — so I thought I'd share those instead!

1. Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller
I like this book because the narrator talks about how they want to be kind but don't always know what the kind thing to do is. I think that nuance is still over my 5-year-old's head, but we are able to talk about how the characters in the book feel based on the actions of the other characters, and how it can be hard to do the right thing sometimes.

2. The Boy with Big, Big Feelings by Britney Winn Lee
I thought this book might be helpful for my own boy with big feelings, but since he's never been taught to be ashamed of having feelings I don't think he really resonated with the central message of a boy who learns it's OK to share his big feelings.

3. Dragons Love Tacos 2 by Adam Rubin
We're going to see the Dragons Love Tacos musical soon, so it seemed like a good time to get the sequel to the well-loved original. This one is a bit more bizarre than the first and involves time traveling.

4. Farmer Pete Has Stinky Feet by Kim Uliana
My husband added this to our son's Christmas wish list because he thought the title sounded funny and our son would like it. Unfortunately the rhythm of the text is truly awful, and I say that as someone who can usually get into the rhythm of any kid's book even when my husband claims the rhythm doesn't work. I should have screened it against Goodreads and seen that it had no ratings except the author's (and now mine!).

5. The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
We've discovered that a lot of Dr. Seuss' classic books have problematic elements, but this one at least has a message about environmentalism that my 5-year-old was able to understand pretty easily.

6. Maybe God Is Like That Too by Jennifer Grant
This one came highly recommended, and for good reason. The main character wonders how they can see God, and they learn that they can see God whenever they experience the fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, patience, etc.). My son seemed to like this one, and when we were reading Be Kind the other night and talking about kindness, he commented, "Maybe God is like that too!"

7. Of Thee I Sing by Barack Obama
I like the idea of this one (comparing children's qualities to famous people throughout history) but it didn't really hold my son's attention, and I found myself having to explain who each person was in order for the text to make any sense. (For example, the page about Jackie Robinson basically just says, "He showed us how to be brave!" without any explanation for how, and my son immediately wanted to know why so many people in the baseball stands looked angry.)

8. Richard Scarry's Cars and Trucks and Things that Go by Richard Scarry
I haven't read this one with my son yet, but from when my husband read it at bedtime it seems to just be a lot of pictures with single-word labels, so it might be better either for younger kids or when my son is closer to being ready to read himself.

9. What Makes a Baby by Cory Silverberg
This was recommended as the most preschooler-friendly, gender-inclusive explanation of how babies are made, and it's mostly that, although I have to gloss over some parts due to it being not super inclusive of my son's adoption story. I also have the more detailed It's Not the Stork! for when he's a little bit older, which unfortunately is not trans-inclusive (which is partly why I'm saving it, for when the concept of "What this book says is not entirely accurate" will not overload his little brain).

10. When Aidan Became a Brother by Kyle Lukoff
This is a very sweet book about a trans boy who is worried that his new baby sibling is going to have a tough childhood like he did. He learns that you can't know everything about a person right away, but you can do your best and love them, which includes listening to them and making changes if needed.

What books have you acquired recently?

Looking back:
One year ago I was reading: Cutting for Stone and A Passage to India
Five years ago I was reading: All the Light We Cannot See and Generous Spaciousness
Ten years ago I was reading: My Sister's Keeper

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