Monday, March 3, 2008

You're Invited to a Virtual Birthday Party...

for The Joy of Children's Literature Blog (BlogJoy)! The birth of BlogJoy coincides with the publication of The Joy of Children's Literature (Houghton Mifflin) and will be a way for me to provide additional reviews, resources, ideas, and news about children's literature along with a way for us to talk about books.

Unfortunately, I can't offer you a slice of cake, but I can offer you something even better--birthday books! Children of all ages (and secretly, even adults) love their birthday. Give them the gift of reading. What better way to celebrate than reading books by favorite authors? Below are 10 of my favorites:

Oscar's Half Birthday by Bob Graham (Candlewick, 2005). To celebrate his half birthday, Oscar, his parents, and his sister go out for a picnic to their urban park party.

Happy Birthday to You! by Dr. Seuss (Random House, 1959). Describes a birthday celebration in Katroo presided over by the Birthday Bird.

The Secret Birthday Message by Eric Carle (Crowell, 1972). By following the instructions in the coded message, Tim finds his birthday present.

Margret and H. A. Rey's Curious George and the Birthday Surprise illustrated in the style of H. A. Rey by Martha Weston (Houghton Mifflin, 2003). When the man with the yellow hat tells George that he is planning a surprise, the curious chimp finds a hat, noisemakers, decorations, and games and sees that it must be a birthday, but whose?

A Birthday for Frances by Russell and Lillan Hoban (Harper & Row, 1968). Frances is jealous of her sister’s birthday, but birthday spirit moves her to reluctantly give her coveted gift.

Birthday Presents by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Sucie Stevenson (Orchard, 1987). An almost six-year-old girl listens as her mother and father describe her six previous birthday celebrations.


Lyle and the Birthday Party by Bernard Waber (Houghton Mifflin, 1966). Mrs. Primm fears Lyle the crocodile is terribly sick, when in reality he's just "green" over Joshua's birthday party.


A Birthday Basket for Tia by Pat Mora, illustrated by Cecily Lang (Macmillian, 1992). With the help and interference of her cat Chica, Cecilia prepares a surprise gift for her great-aunt’s ninetieth birthday.

The Birthday Tree by Paul Fleischman, illustrated by Barry Root (Candlewick, 2008). When Jack goes to sea, his parents watch as the tree planted at his birth reflects his fortunes and misfortunes.

Some Birthday! by Patricia Polacco (Simon & Schuster, 1991). On her birthday Dad takes a young girl and her brother to see the Monster at Clay Pit Bottom.

Celebrating A Quinceanera: A Latina's 15 Birthday Celebration by by Diane Hoyt-Goldsmith, photographs by Lawrence Migdale (Holiday House, 2002). Describes the customs and traditions connected with the celebration of a Mexican-American girl’s fifteenth birthday, marking her coming of age.


I hope you enjoy this brief list and let me know your favorite birthday books. Come back tomorrow and I'll give you a tour of BlogJoy.

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