Off to the Bookstore!

It’s really true. When it comes to being published, you can’t write what you don’t read. Do you long with a passion to write picture books? When you step through the doors of your local bookstore, does the picture book section have a strong magnetic pull on you even though you aren’t wearing metal? Does your husband usually find you sitting at the kids reading table in the back of the store with 5 to 8 year olds? Are you all reading the SAME books? If so, picture books may be your genre! In 2008 the New York Public Library System came up with a list of 100 picture books everyone should read. I’ll admit that I’ve read less than half of the 100. I’ve got some reading to do! Here are the first 40 books on the list:

1. Abuela by Arthur Dorros.

2. Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst.

3. Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock by Eric A. Kimmel

4. Andy and the Lion by James Daugherty.

5. Bark, George by Jules Feiffer

6. The Bossy Gallito: A Traditional Cuban Folk Tale retold by Lucia M. Gonzalez

7. Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban

8. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do You See? by Bill Martin Jr.

9. Bruno Munari’s ABC by Bruno Munari

10. Buz by Richared Egielski

11. Caps for Sale; A Tale of a Peddler, Some Monkeys and Their Monkey Business by Esphyr Slobodkina

12. The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss

13. A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams

14. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr.

15.Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type by Doreen Cronin

16. Come Along, Daisy! by Jane Simmons

17. Corduroy by Don Freeman

18. Curious George by H.A. Rey

19. Dinosaur Roar! by Paul and Henrietta Stickland

20. Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! by Mo Willems

21. Duck on a Bike by David Shannon

22. Fire Truck by Peter Sis

23. Freight Train by Donald Crews

24. Froggy Gets Dressed by Jonathan London

25. The Gardener by Sarah Stewart

26. George and Martha by James Marshall

27. Go Away, Big Green Monster! by Ed Emberley

28. Goin’ Someplace Special by Patricia McKissack

29. Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann

30. Goodnight Moon by Margaret W. Brown.

31. Gossie by Dunrea Olivier

32. Grandfather’s Journey by Allen Say

33. Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson

34. Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion

35. Henry Hikes to Fitchburg by D.B Johnson

36. Horton Hatches the Egg by Dr. Seuss

37. How do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? by Jane Yolen

38. I Kissed the Baby! by Mary Murphy

39. If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura J. Numeroff

40. It Could Always be Worse: A Yiddish Folktale retold by Margot Zemach

How many did you check off?  Probably not as many as you’d like, right? I don’t know about you, but I can sometimes get caught up in reading more how-to-write for children books,  and not enough of what I love to read and write…PICTURE BOOKS! You can’t write what you don’t read.

Well, I’m off to the bookstore. Got to get a place at that little itty-bitty table before it fills up.

Sherri Crawford


7 responses to “Off to the Bookstore!

  1. Thanks Sherri,
    This is great homework–the kind that’s fun to do! I’ve got about ten read from this list–so I’ve got some catching up to do.
    Happy reading!

  2. I LOVE this kind of homework( (o; It’s a brain vacation and a valuable learning experience at the same time! I’ll give the rest of the list on my next post. Have a great day!

  3. Gloria McQueen Stockstill

    Sherri, I’m off to the library. Your post made me realize it has been weeks since I went to the library to read picture books. Thanks for getting me back on track! And, thanks for the list.


  4. Great list, Sherri! I’m glad I have a library card. I noticed that “Go Away, Big Green Monster” is on the list. This is a book I used in several Family Literacy seminars that I taught. It is a prime example of how an author can say so much in so few words — when working with an illustrator who expands the horizons!

  5. Hey, Sherri, save a spot for me and I’ll meet you there at the itty bitty table!!!! Love, Nancy

  6. Hey Marilyn and Nancy (o;

    Marilyn, after your comments, I can’t wait to read Go Away, Big Green Monster!

    Nancy, we may have to play musical chairs a the itty bitty table (o; We never grew up, huh?

  7. I too am glad to see this list. Mine is going to be different from you all. I go back–way back. I don’t think I’m a good example. I’ll explain why in Tuesday’s blog.

    Good for you to supply this list, Sherri.

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