Sunday, February 10, 2013

So Many Books, So Little Time...

I love to read. And I love children's books. I had a nice collection long before we even considered having a Squid. Not crappy, slap-the-cartoon-character-du-jour-on-the-cover, senseless chidren's books. I love the classics. And the ones that will one day be classics. I have multiple copies of Where The Wild Things Are.  We own books for every age group from picture board books to YA novels.

It should come as no surprise that we started a library of her own for Squid in utero. My baby shower had a storybook theme and everyone brought a children's book to add to the collection. The games had a fairy tale twist (rather than the normal "Guess How Fat Mommy Is" games).

These were the favor boxes at the shower. Aren't they cute?

Now, I realize that not everyone shares my love for children's books. But, just as I say to people who claim that they don't like books in general, "You just haven't found the right books yet!" The children's book industry is huge and caters to wonderfully diverse markets. There is literally something out there for everyone!

And, ever since geeks invented the internet and subsequently taken over the world, they have become a huge target for anyone wanting to make money. Also, getting your book published and sold has become slightly easier due to the internet (if you have the cash), and a lot of geeks are publishing the books they wanted to read as children.

So, in addition to your "normal" alphabet and counting books, we have books like these:

"A children's story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children's story in the slightest.”  -C.S. Lewis

Yes, there are two Neil Gaiman books in there. Because I love Neil Gaiman and pretty much everything he does. I also have a picture book of MirrorMask, but couldn't fit in on the table I used for this.

Some of these were gifts. Some we bought ourselves. Squid mostly likes the Star Wars ABCs and the Andy Warhol Colors books. (Thanks, Carrie and Ashley!!!) She also occasionally will sit through Pride and Prejudice (it's a counting book). She doesn't yet have the patience for the others, but we're working on it. And there are many other books that we want to add to her collection (including a few other Neil Gaiman books, and the rest of the BabyLit board books. But, until then....

"According to the Dewey Decimal System, War and Peace should be right here!"

  We got her a library card. And we do our best to take her to the library and get her used to that magical world. Right now, she is far more interested in the busy beads display. But, they have monthly toddler story hours and lots of books to pull from the shelves with an exasperated mommy scurrying behind to right things before the librarian catches us.

If I can do nothing else for my child, I can at least teach her to love and appreciate the written word. She may never have shelves full of books like her mommy and daddy do. She may carry her entire digital library in her pocket (or access it from the cybernetic implant in her head). But, if she can learn to find answers, or even momentarily escape reality, I will feel like I have succeeded as a parent.

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