This is a fun board book with cut-out holes that takes you on a rhyming guessing game. As you can see from the cover, the usual "Peek-a-boo" is substituted first by "Peek-a-who/hoo" for an owl peeking through. As you turn each page, you discover another rhyme and another surprise popping through the cut-out, such as Peek-a-Zoo, Peek-a-Choo Choo. I have to say, Mikko adores this book even more than Alrik at this point. I like how the cut-outs give little ones something tactile to handle as you read, and the very last page, Peek-a-YOU, is a mirror, which always brings a smile.
This is a heartwarming board book that spells out unconditional parental love. We got this book for Christmas from my mom, and it made me feel all squishy inside to imagine that she was reading it to me while I was reading it to my kids. The text follows a fox mama and cub throughout all the many moods of the young one, reiterating each time, "I love you when you're [adjective]," such as:
I love you when you're bashful and hide behind my knee.No matter what the pup does (even if he's tangling her knitting or being wild or silly or angry), the same text resounds: "I love you." Ok, I'm seriously tearing up while writing this.
I love you when you're brave and from my arms you flee.
The rhyming can be a little clunky at times (the above quote is a good example, with the inverted "from my arms you flee" to make the rhyme), but Mikko doesn't notice, and Alrik certainly doesn't.
I also like that this type of board book has the softer, squishy (but still paper) cover, which again gives little kids something tactile to enjoy and won't be as abrasive against their mouths if they gum the book. I'm not sure if that's the same kind at Amazon (I imagine so) and the library (possibly not), but if you check it out in a bookstore, you'll see what I mean. It's kind of padded.
A baby we used to babysit for loved this book and memorized the "la la la" part with us, which charmed us no end. I knew we needed a copy when we had our own babies. This is just a simple animal-sounds book but with Sandra Boynton's characteristic quirkiness. The "la la la" is what three singing pigs say, until the text corrects the overenthusiastic narrator and points out that all they really say is "oink."
As a side note, I love using this book to teach animal signs. They're an easy and fun lot to memorize, and then you can spice up your telling by using the signs with your baby. (If you need a brush-up on your sign language, here's a book to get you started with animal signs in American Sign Language. The Amazon description says it's British Sign Language, but the signs clearly are ASL, and the back of the book says the same, so I think there must have been two versions. To pick up leftovers, try Signing Savvy or ASL Browser's online dictionaries. Yes, you will need to know rhinoceros.)
I love lift-the-flap books. Yes, you have to be a little careful around babies if you don't want any of the flaps to be ripped right off, but it's such a fun surprise to see what's underneath. This one is a guessing game of body parts and includes some more unlikely terms, like knees and elbows. It also shows a rainbow of skin tones.
This can be a fun makeshift bilingual book, to teach signs for body parts or to incorporate those words from another language you and your child speak (or wish to speak).
I love having touch-and-feel books around for babies. Can you tell I like the tactile properties of books? We have this one, though they've changed the cover, along with some others.
I like how this farm one presents a good selection of different textures in large swaths for babies to grab on to. One of the sheep is covered with woolliness; the chick is a soft fluff; the dog's tummy is long fur. (Of course, these are all synthetic materials.)
Are you tired of hearing me say that you can also use it to teach animal signs or the names of animals in a different language? Well, you can.
This one's just in the realm of possibility — I saw these at our local kids' store and was intrigued. The book is printed on the type of sturdy paper used to make shipping envelopes (like the U.S. Priority Mail ones). They're called Indestructibles, because they're unrippable and babies purportedly can safely chew and mangle them with no lasting damage. I've been wanting to get my own grabby little paws on one.
Has anyone tried them out who could offer a title recommendation? Other titles in the series include Flutter! Fly! about things with wings, Wiggle! March! about plodding creatures, and Creep! Crawl! about, naturally, creepy-crawlies.
I don't know if this is a plus or minus, but the Indestructibles books I mentioned, as far as I can tell, have no words at all. I guess that means they're more for looking at than for reading. The good news is, once again, you can use any language or words to talk with your little one about the pictures.
What good books does your baby like to gnaw on (and/or read)?