Which New Release Are You (& Your Kids Most Excited About?)

Friday, September 13, 2013

Fall Frenzy

We are in the midst of a full-on Fall Frenzy here at my house.  Now that the first few weeks of school, the first round of back-to-school illnesses and the first rush of soccer practices and games have come and gone I find that I have a little time to squeeze in an entry about books celebrating my most favorite time of year.   I love the fall.  I love the changing leaves, I love the pumpkins, I love the crisp, chilly air, I love the football and I especially love autumnal children's books. 

This year there is wonderful new crop of fall themed books for you and your kiddos to enjoy.  One of my newest favorites is Sophie's Squash.  It is written by Pat Zietlow Miller and illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf.  In this book the title character Sophie visits the farmer's market with her parents where they pick up a squash for dinner.  However, Sophie quickly claims the gourd for herself and names her Bernice.  Bernice fits just right into Sophie's arms, looks fantastic swaddled in a blanket and is the perfect companion for rolling down hills.  Bernice, it turns out, is the perfect companion for everything and the two are inseparable.  That is until the unthinkable begins to happen.  The illustrations are cute and playful. This a sweet and clever story about loving something (or someone unconditionally) and learning how to let go.  It is a very gentle and thoughtful way to introduce loss and I heartily recommend checking it out at your local bookshop or library.

Another fantastic new fall book is Pick a Circle, Gather Squares: A Fall Harvest of Shapes written by Felicia Sanzari Chernesky and illustrated by Susan Swan.  This is a great book that not only celebrates the season but explores shapes.  It's a fun way to introduce this important first concept.  The rhyming text is a delight to read and the illustrations truly capture the bright, colorful days of fall.  I see lots of books about shapes but Pick a Circle, Gather Squares is a unique and timely picture book that stands alone.  It's already a favorite of mine to recommend to parents and preschool teachers looking for books about the fall as well as shapes.  It definitely deserves a spot on your book shelf.

Caldecott Honor Award winning author and illustrator Peter McCarty's newest book Fall Ball is a must have for football obsessed families (like mine).  McCarty's pen and watercolor illustrations tell the story of children freshly released from the confines of school and their attempt at a game of pick-up football.  Things don't go quite as expected as the kids are surprised by Mother Nature in a variety of ways.  It's a fun, fast paced read that celebrates not only football but the changing seasons as well.  It's a perfect bedtime book for all your football fans.

Finally, I simply cannot wrap up a review of fall favorites without mentioning Lois Ehlert's Leaf Man.  It's not a new book but it is my most favorite fall book.  It is beautiful, whimsical, delightful, educational and utterly unique. Leaf Man (like so many of Ehlert's books) is a true celebration of nature.  It reads like a love letter to fall.  The illustrations will take your breath away.  So pick up a copy, snuggle up with your kiddos and prepare to be swept away. 

Fall is the perfect time to settle in with a great stack of books.  Find a cozy spot and share one of these or one of the many, many other wonderful fall books out there.  These a just a few of my favorites but I am always on the look out for more!  So sound off below with your suggestions! 

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