Story time is the best time of the day. Whether we're snuggled up on the couch or cozy in our pjs before bed, reading stories with my little ones is one of my favorite things to do. Everyone has a favorite book they remember from their childhood, and every day, parents and kids are discovering new classics of their own. There are many fabulous children's books out there, some of which everyone knows about and others we would have never discovered had my son not simply pulled a random book off a library shelf. I created this blog to share some of these wonderful stories with you. Think of it as a year's worth of the best children's books around, since no day should be without a great story. In the end, I hope we'll all have discovered at least a few new titles that will have made their way onto our list of family favorites. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Day 150: If I Built a Car

This fabulous book came in my son's Easter basket this past weekend and I think it's safe to say it has already become a family favorite.  We first discovered Chris Van Dusen when we picked up The Circus Ship at our local library a while back, and have loved every book of his we've read since.  If you haven't heard of Chris Van Dusen or read any of his books, you should!  I feel like he is one of those authors who doesn't have nearly the fame and huge fan base he deserves, though hopefully I'm wrong.  His rhymes are clever, fun, and downright impeccable -- right up there with Dr. Seuss and Bill Peet, in my opinion.  In fact, I just noticed that If I Built a Car won the E.B. White Read Aloud Award in 2006.  Most well-deserved!  This book is so much fun to read aloud, and the pictures make it even more fun to look at as you listen.  His illustrations are brilliant, with bright, bold colors that jump out of the page and a unique retro style that I just love.

Most of all, though, I love the way this book highlights the wonderful creativity and imagination of childhood.  Drawing inspiration from zeppelins, trains, jet engines, and even the Weinermobile, our young narrator's car is fantastically awesome in every way.  Complete with old Cadillac-style fins, a pool, snack bar, fireplace, couch robot auto-pilot and more, this car can do it all:  become a boat, cruise underwater like a submarine, even blast off and fly in the sky!  "My car will be cool!  My car will be keen!  My car will be one big fantastic machine!  The toast of the town! The cream of the crop! The belle of the ball and the tip of the top!  My car will be famous from here to Peru... If I built a car, that's just what I'd do."  Be sure to check out Jack's drawings and plans inside the front and back covers of the book.  I love Van Dusen's dedication, too.  (I guess we just love this book from cover to cover!)  Cuddle up and read this fabulous story with your child and then let your own imaginations run wild.  What kind of car would you build?


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