There are few things in life (in my opinion) as important or special as a good friend, so this week’s book recommendations focus on unlikely, but wonderful friendships. From animal friends to amazing friends, dancing friends to baking friends, you’ll find the spirit of friendship in each of these books. Currently, King County Library System (KCLS) has copies of these books in their catalog.
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 978-0374324384
Chester and Forsythia are best friends and Chester thinks Forsythia is amazing. She can bake amazing cakes and performs in the ballet. But one day Forsythia is sick. She stays in bed because she doesn’t feel like doing anything amazing. Good thing for her she has a best friend who will bake a special monographed cupcake and make up pirate dances for her. The message that is delivered subtly with style and panache is that there are many ways to be amazing, but being a good friend is the most amazing of all.
Boyds Mills Press, 978-1590784884
The text of this American Library Association Notable Children’s book is written completely in dialogue and focuses on the unlikely friendship between a large polar bear and a very talkative goose. Goose wants to do everything Bear does, which annoys Bear. Bear is about to go crazy when Goose reads his note to Bear, “I like you. Indeed I do. You are my splendid friend.” It’s an especially nice book for bedtime, as it ends with lots of hugs.
Tanya and Emily take ballet class together, but they couldn’t be more different dancers. Little Tanya is full of energy, while Emily is calm and controlled. The two never talk until one day. As they pass the animals in the zoo, Tanya shows Emily how to dance an ostrich, a flamingo, a leopard. Soon both girls are dancing giraffes, antelope, and penguins. Now Tanya and Emily dance together all the time, in class and out, and at the end of the year recital they dance a pas de deux. This is a wonderful book to read to preschool and older children because it shows there is more than one way to dance and that dancing is all around us. The story of friendship will appeal to all children, not just budding dancers.