There are so many picture books I love, that it’s almost impossible to choose one favorite. There are the books I adored as a child like The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss, Illustrated by Crockett Johnson, Put Me in the Zoo by Robert Lopshire, Are You My Mother? and Go, Dog. Go! by P.D. Eastman. I have spent a ridiculous amount of time trying to analyze Go, Dog. Go! What is it about that book . . . dogs in fast cars? Weird hats? Near constant rejection? Or is it all about the party at the end? I have no idea. But for whatever reason Go, Dog. Go! is inexplicably satisfying.
Then there are the books my children insisted I read over and over again. In the case of my son: What do People Do All Day? by Richard Scarry, and Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi. My daughter’s go-to books were: Click, Clack Moo: Cows That Type by Doreen Cronin, Illustrated by Betsy Lewin, The Gardener by Sarah Stewart, Illustrated by David Small and The Dinosaurs of Waterhouse Hawkins by Barbara Kerley, Illustrated by Brian Selznick.
In the final category are books I’ve discovered as an adult and I wish I had written. One of my favorites here is: Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett, Illustrated by Jon Klassen. What I love about Extra Yarn is how original it is. I mean imagine giving a room full of authors the idea of writing a book about yarn. Nobody would have come up with Extra Yarn except Mac Barnett. Mac’s story brought to life with the understated genius of Jon Klassen’s illustrations is simply sublime. But what I like best about Extra Yarn is it packs a powerful emotional message, which resonates with me in that same intense way as The Carrot Seed.
Gennifer Choldenko is the New York Times-bestselling and Newbery Honor Award-winning author of ten children's books, including A Giant Crush, illustrated by Melissa Sweet, and Al Capone Does My Shirts.
Meet Gennifer Choldenko at Books Inc. in Mountain View 3:00PM on Saturday, April 8
for a storytime reading of her latest picture book, Dad and the Dinosaur!