This month at the library, after paying our late fines, Ms. Kaz and my daughter brought home a bunch of new books. One my daughter really seems to like is Nothing To Do, written by Douglas Wood, and illustrated by Wendy Anderson Halperin.
Nothing to Do is an interesting book about the many fun and interesting ways kids can do “nothing” and about how us adults (“people with big shoes,” as the book calls us) need reminding that nothing is sometimes the best thing to do.
The book is visually interesting, as well, in that, as the illustrator documents in the introduction, the pages are actually a menagerie, if you will, of illustrations arranged in patterns found in nature.
But I’ve learned that this is not my daughter’s favorite book. In fact, prior to reading this book, I didn’t know my daughter had a favorite book. You see, there’s a passage in Nothing to Do about reading your favorite book. And then reading it again, just because it is your favorite.
It is at this point that my daughter always says, “I wanna do that!”
“Sure, sweetie, we can do that,” I tell her, “but what is your favorite book?”
Not expecting an answer initially, and not really sure if she could grasp the concept of a Favorite Book, it surprised me when she said, “Stellaluna!”
Stellaluna, by Jannel Cannon, is a book about a baby bat who, after his mother is attacked by an owl, winds up living with a family of birds, and learning to behave like a bird.
In the end, Stellaluna ends up back with his mother, happily eating mangoes instead of bugs, and Stellaluna and the birds learn about how creatures can be so different, while at the same time be so much alike.
The illustrations are really nice, and, although my daughter isn’t quite old enough for it year, the authors include a lot (for kids, at least) of information on bats at the end of the book.