Thursday, August 02, 2007

Cool Stuff!

I love it when we get neat stuff into the store. (My wallet, however, doesn't fare too well.)

We just got in a pop-up version of We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury. I love, love, love this book, but can never tell it well. The kids always love it anyway.

I wouldn't recommend getting the pop-up instead of the original (in any format) because they had to cut stuff to make it fit. Plus, pop-ups and toddlers don't mix well, no matter how much they love them. But it's absolutely adorable and the pop-ups are well done. So it's a nice treat for older kids (preschool-age, at least) or adults who love the book.

(btw, someone gave the board book a one star review on Amazon. I think the review itself is hilarious. And sad.)

We got in book 2 of Judson Robert's Strongbow Saga: Dragons From the Sea a few weeks ago. I haven't had a chance to read the second book yet, but I liked the first, Viking Warrior. More importantly, it was an engaging and well written non-magical adventure story that should appeal to teen boys - and is marketed to them, and not to adults. A rare occurrence indeed.

But of course, what I'm really waiting for is Eclipse, which is due out next week, and Baby Bear, Baby Bear, What Do You See?, which is due out a few weeks after that.

And this has nothing to do with cool new stuff, but having stumbled across the one star review of We're Going on a Bear Hunt, I was curious about whether or not other classics had gotten one star reviews on amazon as well. And sure enough, there are one star reviews for Brown Bear, Brown Bear, Goodnight Moon, and Where the Wild Things Are. Of course, the best ones are for kid's novels.

I don't expect everyone to love every classic, but some of these reviews just crack me up.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory:

"I hate this book SOOOO much. I was seven when I read it for the first time. It scarred me to irrevocable fear and forced its malicious, acrid depiction of the murder of four innocent children down my vulnerable throat. Many have argued with me and have said that the children didn't die. However, I argue intensely. First of all, Willy Wonka is a liar and anything that expels from his horrid monstrous mouth can be regarded only for the sake of malevolence and remain at that..."

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing:

"Subversive. I swear kids like this book because it is their first introduction to sexuality. The persistent thread of "oh no, this forbidden thing can't be happening" makes for a sort of naughty thrill ride, a sort of prepubescent fantasy about acts of social misbehavior. Covertly sensual acts (like the eating of the turtle, the ultimate "oh no!") and bathroom allusions help charge kids up in ways they can't even grasp themselves."

A Wrinkle in Time:

" an extremely terrible book. Its attempt at science fiction is out of place and corny to the extreme. I read this book expecting it to be a decent novel, but instead I encountered garbage. Oh, and don't pay attention to the Newbery Medal Award that they awarded. They probably awarded it to A Wrinkle in Time because there were no other books published that year, so it won by default. Even then, it was more than likely that the people who gave the award were reluctant to do so. It only says that I gave it one star because there was no choice for 0 stars or lower. This book would be much more entertaining...if it were burnt. "

Bridge to Terabithia:

"My daughter was assigned Bridge to Terabithia as summer reading for 5th grade. Whenever I suggested she read it, she would groan and reply, 'Mom, its SOOOO boring.' Thinking she was stalling and complaining about nothing, I picked it up one night after she had gone to bed. She was right - it was boring. Really boring. The characters are not developed, the plot is superficial, and, in the end, none of the questions that are raised are really answered. I realize that it was an 'award winning book', but the competition must have been truly awful for this book to have been the best. If I may, I would recommend 'A Wrinkle in Time' instead (also on my daughter's reading list and a story we both have found much more enjoyable.)"


So, dear readers, which classic book(s) that everyone loves, did you hate with every fiber of your being?

I have to admit that I can't think of any myself at the moment. Once upon a time I might have said Goodnight Moon (not that I hated it, just that I didn't get The Big Deal), but having studied it in kid lit classes, I know understand why babies and toddlers love it.


Nenena said...

I hate hate hate Catcher in the Rye. With a burning passion. I understand on an intellectual level that it's a good book, somehow, or at least that it was groundbreaking for its time. But still. There are far more interesting outcast teenage boy characters for me to read about if I feel like it.

Mickle said...

ooohh...interesting. That's one of the few I haven't read somehow. It's been hovering close to the top of my tbr pile for a while, but i haven't gotten to it yet.