My one-year-old and I are reading through every board book at our local library. For more about this project, check out this post.

1. The Birthday Box by Leslie Patricelli

Previously I was less than thrilled with another book by this author. This one, however, is brilliant. Baby gets a birthday gift – a box! Oh, and there’s something in the box, too. Loved everything about it. With my son’s birthday this month, this is a definite buy.

2. Llama Llama Gives Thanks by Anna Dewdney

Like “Llama Llama I Love You,” this book is a holiday-themed book starring the title character. Cute, but not remarkable.

3. The Usborne Book of First Words by Sue Stitt

This one wasn’t a board book – whoops! Each page has a picture of an everyday thing, the name of that thing, and smaller drawings of ways that thing is used. It’s very intelligently designed and educational, perhaps too much so. My son lost interest about two pages in.

4. The Pout-Pout Fish Undersea Alphabet by Deborah Diesen, illustrated by Dan Hanna

When a character gets an ABC book, you know the publisher is milking the franchise. The illustrations are fine. The fish listed for the ABCs are fine. However, this is labeled a “touch and feel” book. And that aspect is not fine. Most of the textures are just slightly raised bumps, made of the same material as the rest of the page. Boring. A few include glitter, which is not something you want around “oohshinyiwilleatit” toddlers. If this had just been the ABCs, it would have been ok, if unremarkable. Marketed as touch-and-feel, it’s a letdown.

5. Pacifiers Are Not Forever by Elizabeth Verdick, illustrated by Marieka Heinlen

Smart, sweet book about giving up the pacifier. My son never took to pacifiers, but if he had, I would definitely buy this to read while weaning from them.

6. Good Night Yoga by Diane Kovanda and Adam Gamble

Kids say good morning, good afternoon, and good night to various yoga-related things. We have a couple other “Good Night” books, and they’re always informative and sweet. If you’re into yoga, you’ll like this.

7. If Animals Kissed Good Night by Ann Whitford Paul, illustrated by David Walker

How animals would kiss each other good night, starting (and ending) with sloth’s slooooow kiss. This is one of those sweet books that you want to read while cuddling your kid. The art is nice and has a distinct style, and the story is heartwarming. It’s a bestseller for a reason.

8. I’m Just a Baby Triceratops by ?

Don’t mind the possessed look in the photo. The real book has googly eyes that poke through each page, and they’re cute, not creepy. Baby triceratops wants to grow big enough to walk with the herd by himself. Cute, but short and very simple. I expect more from a dinosaur book.

9. First Picture Action Rhymes by ?

Songs like “I’m a Little Teapot” and “Itsy Bitsy Spider” with clay models demonstrating the hand motions. This taught me a couple new rhymes that my son liked, but he didn’t care for the book itself.

10. Colors of Nature by Kate Riggs and Paolo Domeniconi

Beautiful, fanciful art featuring a kid in a giant-sized environment, exploring colors and how they relate to seasons. This book is by far the prettiest one we read this week. The imaginative gigantiform world would make a great setting for an animated film. This book deserves more recognition than it seems to have received.


Best Book of the Week: The Birthday Box by Leslie Patricelli

Both my son and I enjoyed this one. It’s cute, clever, and relatable, and works for young babies all the way up through toddlerhood.

Honorable Mention: Colors of Nature by Kate Riggs and Paolo Domeniconi

The art made this a near-winner. I want to see more from this team.


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