Monday, February 22, 2016

The Little Crooked Bookshelf

by Linda Sarah & Benji Davies

This week's pick is from cottager Kara LaReau.

What it's all about

Birt loves being best “Big” friends with Etho. He loves when they sit in cardboard boxes together at the top of Sudden Hill. He loves their two-by-two rhythm. But then a boy named Shu comes along, and everything changes. Could a new friend possibly be a good thing?

Why it's on The Little Crooked Bookshelf…

I LOVE Benji Davies’ work, especially his recent picture book, The Storm Whale (to the point where I own a blue-and-white-striped shirt I call my “Noi shirt” after the book’s protagonist). So it's NO surprise that I adore his sweet, comforting artwork here — but Linda Sarah’s lovely, wry story also blows me away. It’s a tribute to friendship and imagination, and while it's definitely a book for everyone, it does capture a certain boyish energy. I'm so happy to shelve this alongside my little one's other faves.

My favorite lines…
"This tiny boy’s called Shu.
He’s watched Birt and Etho every day
and finally found a big enough box
and courage to ask if he can play, too."

My favorite illustration…

Really, they're all amazing. So here's just one at random:

Why kids will love it…

Sarah and Davies gracefully address the sometimes-awkward dynamic that arises when three friends come together, a situation all-too-familiar to children of all ages. Also, Birt and Etho and Shu use their imaginations to create all kinds of fun with their cardboard boxes. Their ultimate invention? Let’s just say it’s called “Mr. Climbfierce.” And it has WHEELS.

Why grown-ups will love it…

It contains the perfect three-by-three rhythm of funny, sweet, and visually delightful — you’ll want to make this book your best "Big" friend.

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