The Bookbag, Books for Ages 4 to 8, May/June 2007

Summer is here, with plenty of time for laid-back, fun reading. It was quite a challenge to select just a “few” of the books we love for this bookbag. Since it’s summer, we tended to pull favorites that have a summer-time feel to them.

If you want to see more recent reviews, just type in “May 2007” or “June 2007” when you search the Reading Tub Website. Be sure to keep reading, the Just One More Book! Podcast is here, too.

Remember, the books are listed in alphabetical order by title. There is no ranking.

Dad’s Bald Head by Paul Many. Father’s Day may be over, but this one is a perfect read for any time. Pete loves his Dad, but Dad doesn’t like the “scraggly” hair on the side of his head. One morning Dad decides to shave it all off. Then Pete doesn’t know what to think: is this guy still his dad? This is a light-hearted look that offers kids a way to understand “big” changes. (Walker Publishing Company, 2007)

Dr. Duncan Dog on Duty by Lisa Dunn-Dern. Everybody in this family has a job…even the pets! Introduce your children to community service as they go with Dr. Duncan visit children at the hospital. (Visikid Books, 2007)

The First Well & Other Read-Along Stories by Bookbox. This collection of five fables is an e-Book on DVD. Each of the stories offers a magical journey and a lesson in life and wisdom. We love the fact that you can pick from among six languages for the stories. (, 2005)

Flying Solo by Kristi Stephas. This summer, Ellie (6) is flying from Chicago to California to spend a week with her aunt. She has never been on a plane by herself before, so this is a little unnerving. “This story gives you everything you want to prepare a child for an airplane trip.” (Toy Truck Publishing, 2005)

I Wish I had Freckles Like Abby and I Wish I had Glasses Like Rosa by Kathryn Heling and Deborah Hembrook. This pair of bilingual books is a charming look at friendship and how children view themselves in others’ eyes. (Raven Tree Press, LLC, 2007)

There’s a Season for All by Sammy Shu. Looking for a creative, folklore-sh way to explain the seasons? Then the fairies in this book will help. This highly imaginative story offers a “history” of how the seasons came to be, as well as lessons in sibling rivalry, friendship, and cooperation. (Raynestorme Books, 2005)

To Know the Sea by Frances Gilbert. Princess Isola is feeling, well, isolated. She lives in a mountain kingdom, but is intrigued by the sea. When the queen issues a proclamation (with a reward, of course) for the first person to bring the sea to the kingdom, the princess learns a valuable lesson. (Greene Bark Books, 2000)

Trosclair and the Alligator by Peter Huggins. Trosclair likes to explore the Louisanna Bayou on his pirogue (boat). He’s sure those storis about Gargantua, the alligator, were more than a little exaggerated. Then he met Gargantua face to face! This is a classic fable set in the bayou … with an interesting twist. (Star Bright Books, 2006)

Usborne Book of Lullabies by Fiona Watt, editor. This boardbook presents seven poems perfect for bedtime. It is also accompanied by a CD that plays the tunes of these and five other ready-for-dreamland pieces. (Usborne Publishing Ltd, 2005)

Vegetable Dreams (Huerto Sonado) by Dawn Jeffers. When Mr. Martinez learns that Erin wants to create her own garden (and her parents tell her it is too much work), he offers to help her. Together, they create a special bond as they plant and then enjoy the benefits of spending time in the garden. (Raven Tree Press, 2006)

What’s With This Room by Tom Lichtenheld. Messy rooms and kids just seem to go together. In this humorous look at what’s “really” going on, both parents and kids can get a new perspective on this age-old problem. (Little, Brown and Company, 2005)

Just One More Book! Click the title to listen to the Podcast.

Ages 0 to 4: Fun, Times Eleven: The Eensy-Weensy Spider by Mary Ann Hoberman. “When it comes to generously illustrated sing-along staples, more is more. Boasting eleven extra verses of the classic toddler tune and thirty-two pages of captivating illustrations, this book has always left our girls eager for its next reading.” (Little, Brown and Company, 2004)

Ages 4 to 8: Fur and Feathers: Saving Samantha – A True Story by Robbyn Smith van Frankenhuyzen. Warm, realistic illustrations and generous, unimposing text vividly recreate the thrill of befriending an injured fox pup and the bittersweet satisfaction of her eventual return to the wild. I don’t think our two daughters could be more excited about this story if they had lived it themselves! (Sleeping Bear Press, 2004)