It’s time to be thankful for all we have. But we should be grateful all year long. Here are some books that put the focus on this beautiful season. The first book is best for ages eight and up. The rest are picture books and are good for all ages, unless otherwise indicated.
We Gather Together: Stories of Thanksgiving from Then and Now (Young Readers Edition), by Denise Kiernan, is a series now written to appeal to the younger generation. This interesting book debunks popular thinking of how this holiday began and how gratitude has evolved in America. When Abraham Lincoln declared November to celebrate as a national holiday, it took almost another hundred years for Roosevelt to secure the fourth Thursday as Thanksgiving. This book is best suited for eight and up.
Bear Says Thanks, by Karma Wilson and gorgeously painted with acrylic by Jane Chapman, is a picture book to share with youngsters ages two through five. Bear has decided to have a dinner for all his friends. But he finds his cupboard bare. However, soon his friends begin to bring items for the feast. This daring story teaches sharing, kindness, and the importance of being thankful. This book is part of a series about Bear.
Whale Fall: Exploring an Ocean-Floor Ecosystem, by Melissa Stewart and beautifully illustrated using watercolor, mixed media, and digital tools by Rob Dunlavey, is a non-fiction book with glorious illustrations describing what happens to a whale when it dies, (or also known as whale fall). This book shows what happens to the body when it goes to the ocean floor and how it becomes nutritious food for organisms that live on the deep ocean bottom. This book is an excellent example to us appreciate our intricately planned living planet.
What’s. Inside a Caterpillar Cocoon? And Other Questions about Moths & Butterflies by Rachel Ignotyofsky, is a non-fiction book that was traditionally illustrated and using a computer that is stunning in every way. You easily learn about the differences and similarities between these insects. For instance, moths fly at night whereas butterflies soar in sunlight.
Caterpillars: What will I be When I Get to be Me?, by Kevin McCloskey, is a Toon Book that reads like a short and quick graphic novel. This easy-to-read book is geared for four to seven years of age. But I’m betting any kid of any age who picks this book up will enjoy and learn. If your children have not discovered these Toon Books, they’re missing out!
What Goes On Inside a Beaver Pond?, by Becky Cushing Gop and wonderfully illustrated by Carrie Shryock, is a fascinating non-fiction book that anyone, young and old, will enjoy pouring over. There is so much detail and information that is painted with accuracy that this book is one you will choose again and again! The end-pages are fascinating as it shows a map of where these animals might live. Be sure to check out one of the last pages as there is a full page of colorful animals you can search for on each page. This book is a delight and belongs in every home!
Find Out About: Animal Camouflage, by Martin Jenkins and richly illustrated using mixed media by Jane McGuinness, brings to light the amazing and miraculous symphony of differences of animals when they hide. Some include animals that hide in the sea and change from one brilliant color to another. There are also animals that completely blend with their environment, like the frilled lizard, you would never see them as they crawl up a tree stump. The author is a conservation biologist.
Sir Morien: The Legend of a Knight of the Round Table, by Holly Black and brightly illustrated by Kaliis Smith, is a story with a twist. The telling is based on a thirteenth-century Arthurian story. Prince Morien comes from the tip of Africa and is in search of his father who went on a quest with King Arthur. The quest weaves in well-known knights who become fast friends with Morien and help him. This story showcases friendship, perseverance, and determination. It might also spark an interest in the King Arthur tales and is best for ages four through eight.
Mimi & the Gold Baton, by Cheryl Olsten and gorgeously illustrated in graphite on paper and colored digitally by Nicolo Carozzi, is a most impressive picture book with the most beautiful full open-page pictures. Mimi is an adorable little mouse who dreams of becoming the first female orchestra conductor. Through her determination and hard work, she achieves her dream. The story and illustrations go hand in hand and make a wonderful bedtime story for ages three through eight.
Mazie’s Amazing Machines, by Sheryl Haft and cleverly illustrated using digitally graphite pencil drawings on top of hand-printed stamps by Jeremy Holmes, showcases young Marie who loves to build and is a self-proclaimed engineer. When she sees a problem, she turns on her imagination and invents a way to solve it. She invents a unique way to feed the dog and invents a ramp to help her mom carry boxes. The illustrations are so detailed and rich with imagination, you will find yourself pouring over each page again and again. There’s even a pop-up to help explain one of Maizie’s inventions.
Saving the Sun, by Emma Pearl and vividly illustrated by Sara Ugolotti, is a richly imaginative story that just might spark some clever stories contained in you. Luna has just noticed that the sun as it sinks in the horizon beyond the sea, that it plunges into the sea! Through an exhausting night and with the help of animals, in the ocean and on land, Luna and her Poppa have much to do to get the sun back glowing in the sky.