Ganesha's Sweet Tooth
by Sanjay Patel & Emily Haynes
I've had an obsession with world mythologies/religions since I stumbled across an intro to Greek myths series when I was in 4th grade, so I may be a bit biased here, but I think this is an adorable introduction to the world of (very confusing) Hindu mythology. And Sanjay Patel's art is beyond gorgeous. I want to own all of his things! ALL!
Story moral(s): Making a mistake isn't the end of the world & Having something that makes you different (a flaw or physical handicap) can turn out to be a good thing.
by Alexis Deacon
Sometimes the best storytime books are the ones filled with pure nonsense and I love this one for that fact. Rat law says the cheese belongs to you. Unless someone bigger, stronger, and/or scarier comes along... or does it? The imperfect grammar makes it so charming.
Story moral(s): The last few pages show that being a bully really doesn't pay (despite what rat law may make you think) and the final illustration also shows that sharing creates the true winner.
Mr. Tiger Goes Wild
by Peter Brown
Mr. Tiger is feeling a bit stifled by his buttoned down society and decided to shuck his pointed collar and top hat and go wild. His uptight neighbors are appalled. But once he leaves the city, Mr. Tiger gets a bit lonely. Kids will relate to the feeling of needing to run amok, it's in their nature after all. And who doesn't love anthropomorphized animals in fancy dress?
Story moral(s): Everything in moderation, compromise, the importance of being with your friends and family.
Rosie Revere, Engineer
by Andrea Beaty
A young girl is something of an engineering prodigy but is painfully shy about sharing her amazing contraptions with others. She is helped past her fear of failure and rejection by her amazing aunt, who shares quite a resemblance with the iconic Rosie the Riveter.
Story moral(s): It's okay to fail, believe in yourself.
Iggy Peck, Architect
by Andrea Beaty
Andrea Beaty and illustrator David Roberts preceded Rosie with this gem about Iggy, a child prodigy with architecture, who finds himself at sea when his 2nd grade teacher bans architecture from the classroom. (She was traumatized by architecture at a young age.) Of course, events unravel in such a way that Iggy must use the forbidden architecture to save the day. Yay!
Story moral(s): Don't let naysayers and critics keep you from your greatness & childhood dreams are the most important things in the whole world.
by Bridget Heos
When Baby Billy is born his parents are shocked to discover he has a mustache! The nurse at the hospital sagely advises that they will have to wait and see if it's a good guy mustache or a bad guy mustache. Much to their relief, Billy's 'stache seems to be the good guy variety until one morning when he wakes up with a bad guy mustache to make even Snidely Whiplash green with envy. Billy proceeds to go on a crime spree that lands him in jail and as he waits and waits for freedom, he starts to really regret his evil deeds.
Story moral(s): Everybody has a bad day every once in a while.
by Oliver Jeffers
I adore all of Oliver Jeffers books, they are always pure whimsy and magic. This nonsense tale of a young boy whose kite becomes stuck in a tree and the lengths he goes to to get it down will have kids (and you) in stitches.
Story moral(s): Keep trying (?)
Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great
by Bob Shea
This was my holiday staff pick for kids this past season, I love it that much. Not only are there sparkly, rainbow cupcakes on the cover, but inside is a story about not judging others before you get to know them. Goat is a little disgruntled ever since Unicorn came to town. He's convinced that Unicorn must be so full of himself and just doesn't see why everyone thinks he's so great when Goat is pretty great to. It's hard to keep hating someone once they prove how nice they are and tell you how awesome they think you are, though.
Story moral(s): Don't judge a book by its cover.
Maude the Not-So-Noticeable Shrimpton
by Lauren Child
The Shrimptons are known for being outstanding, amazing, fabulous, and spectacular. They do not like to be second best. All except Maude that is. While her parents and siblings are the most fashionable, the most talented, the funniest and the prettiest, she blends into the background. When she gets a tiger for her birthday (instead of the rather sensible goldfish that she wanted) the rest of the Shrimptons may finally start to see why being so ostentatious isn't always a good thing.
Story moral(s): Being average isn't bad & having your identity based around being the best is not always good.