Jimmy loves books. Really, really loves books. He has a nice little collection of books, but sometimes something new needs to be added. And sometimes we can't afford to buy the new additions, because of funds and because of luggage allowance (we are coming back to Australia at some stage, even if it feels forever away, and can't bring back everything), so we make use of the library...
While shopping for a birthday present for someone else, we came across Alex Schertle's Little Blue Truck, a tale about a friendly little truck, who helps out a big dump truck, only to need a little help himself (herself?) from his/her animal friends. We were attracted by the Jill McElmurry's beautiful illustrations, but moral of the story sealed the deal (we bought the book from Claflin Books, and were able to read the whole story before buying it). Not only is it a lovely book, it's also a great introduction into animal noises, and it started a sound and word explosion to occur in Jimmy. We bought the book in December, and recently Jimmy has been making almost all of the animal noises, along with Little Blue's beep's, the honk's and roooooooom of the Dump Truck. It's a few kinds of cute and awesome.
A not-so-recent trip to the library yielded two very good finds: Room on the Broom; and Walter the Baker. I didn't think about it at the time, but what drew me to both books was the illustrations (again!). It turns out that Room on the Broom is written and illustrated by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, the pair who put together The Gruffalo, a favourite of Jimmy's that we brought with us. Room on the Broom is just as rhyme-y and fun and brains vs brawn as The Gruffalo, and tells the story of a generous, if somewhat careless, witch who says "Yes!" to a few too many requests by animals to ride on her broom. It almost ends in tears, but the animals come to her aid and save the day. We read it a lot and really, Michael and I didn't mind (too much). Oh and it turns out that the book has its own website and short movie!
Walter the Baker, by Eric Carl, is illustrated in true Carl fashion, and tells the story of a baker who is an excellent baker, held in high favour by the duke and duchess, until one morning when their usual order is messed up (due to the cat spilling the milk used in the bread). Walter must complete the dukes request or be banished from the whole duchy. It all ends happily, and while a little wordy for Jimmy, he still enjoys it - perhaps because he sees me making bread and so understands that I am a little like Walter the Baker. Or Jimmy just likes the pictures, and that's ok too, because they are nice pictures.
Hairy Maclary Scattercat arrived with Granny and Pop, way back in August last year, but it's still on high rotation. I don't know if it's the illustrations (which are lovely), or the story of the naughty Hairy Maclary as he chases the neighbourhood cats and the rhyming and sing-song style of Lynley Dodd, but Jimmy really enjoys Scattercat, and can now point to Hairy Maclary on each page, as he gets ready to disturb the unsuspecting cats. Hairy Maclary gets what's coming to him when he comes across Scarface Claw, and Jimmy recites the last lines that see Hairy Maclary seeking a safe place from the toughest tom in town.
The library books have since been returned and replaced with new ones, and we don't have to decide whether or not to bring back the other two (not to mention all the others we own...). There's still time to decide. And there's still time to find new favourites at the library.