picture books

Don & Audrey Wood's Children's Books

The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry & the Big Hungry Bear
A little mouse has a treasure- a perfectly exquisite strawberry. The narrator warns him of the nearby strawberry-eating bear, and the little mouse determines to protect his treasure. What will he do? Is the narrator as innocent as he seems, or is he merely after the strawberry himself? Children laugh with delight at the mouse's antics, empathize with the narrator's desire to enjoy the strawberry, and shiver at the thought of a hungry bear getting that luscious fruit all to himself. Quite possibly the cutest illustrations I've seen in a children's book. You just want to pick up the mouse and snuggle him! I'm amazed at the depth of expression Don Wood manages to convey in individual pictures! Audrey Wood perfectly captures a child's delight in simple things, as well as their fear of having a possession taken. In the end, sharing and enjoying instead of hoarding win the day. One of my top-10 favorites to read aloud!

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Beautiful, Oops!

There's a new children's book that has captured my fancy. Called Beautiful, Oops!, it is a whole new type of pop-up book, celebrating the potential in every "mistake." The book itself is a study in creativity-- totally thinking "outside the box." This would be a GREAT way to start a discussion with your children on God as Redeemer; One who reclaims for Himself what is captive, ugly and wrong, making it beautiful, holy and right by His very presence. This book brings home the "mistakes are opportunities for good" very effectively, but it's up to you to apply that to your child spiritually-- sometimes, our mistakes hurt others very deeply, and it is only God's grace that can bring anything good out of something like that.

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Kidderminster Kingdom Tales

I bought all 5 Kingdom Tales in one volume, so I will review them as one book, though they are also available as separate hardcover books. The Tales are: Sir Humphery's Honeystand, Mrs. Beaver & the Wolf at the Door, Nicolas & His Neighbors, Cornelius T. Mouse and Sons, and King Leonard's Celebration. Sir Humphery's story tells of the ungrateful servant. Mrs. Beaver is the persistent widow begging for help from an unjust judge. Nicolas the dog learns the meaning of neighbor love at the paws of his Good Samaritan, a cat. Cornelius T. Mouse lives out fatherly love on both of his sons, and King Leonard throws a party which only the sick and poor decide to attend. Sound familiar? Each tale is a retelling of one of Jesus' fairy tales, otherwise known as "parables." Christopher Lane's versions have (very human) animals as their subjects, and all take place in the Kingdom of Kidderminster.

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