Because tales of the Underworld are always appropriate.

Remember awhile back when I mentioned I got a super cool freelance copywriting gig? All because of the blog? Well, the project’s done and the web site’s gone live and I’m pimpin’ it, just because I think it’s so freakin’ cute. Go check it out and get YOUR fortune!

Never have I had the urge to hug a rotund Asian man like I do this guy.

Which brings me to a semi-awkward segue about library cards and tales of the Underworld.

A few weeks ago, MP and I went to the library together for the first time, and she received her very own library card. She even “signed” her name to the back.

After an hour of lingering, and steadfast attempts at diversion from the Scooby Doo paperbacks (“Yes, I KNOW you like Scooby, Honey, but let’s see what OTHER books they have …”) I struck gold. I found a book I LOVED as a child. A book I who’s title I could never remember. A book who’s story I could never forget.

The Funny Little Woman is the retelling of an Asian folk tale. At its center is a little woman who’s rice dumpling falls through a crack in the earth. She follows it down to the Underworld where she’s captured by wicked monsters called the Oni. The illustrations alone are nightmarish.

I always figured I must have been a weird kid for liking it so much. I always DID like the smooky stuff. I even wondered on a few occasions, if maybe I dreamed the whole thing. Yet, here it was, after all these years.

Totally creepy and inappropriate reading for a young child, right?

We checked it out.

And MP loved it.

I knew she would.

So what other gems are out there? Now that we have a spankin’ new card, and I’ve vowed to cut back on the book BUYING — which admittedly, was outta control — we’ll be spending a lot more time at the library.

Tell me YOUR favorites, Doogs.


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20 responses to “Because tales of the Underworld are always appropriate.

  1. I have ALWAYS love Greetings From Sandy Beach by Bob Graham.

    I love finding good children’s books.

  2. We’ve been huge fans of Harold and the Purple Crayon. It never, ever gets old. We just love that story.

  3. underthebigbluesky

    Ahh, we have that book too.

    doesn’t your heart just burst seeing them get their library card.

    Have you read Library Lion, it’s fantastic.

  4. The fortune cookie site is awesome! You rock! Okay, and how funny is that Asian guy? Loved it when he starts whistling.

    As far as books go, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst, is one of our favorites.

    The kids repeat “terrible, horrible, no good…” with me as I read it.

  5. aliasmother

    Just a quick think back on the ones that have stuck with me leads me to:

    Bread and Jam for Frances

    Harry the Dirty Dog

    Alexander and Harold as mentioned above

    Anything Seuss. Man, I loved Seuss. The classic Seuss, though, not these newfangled ones, which I find inferior.

  6. Caps For Sale. My kids have started calling my husband the cap peddler – he’s a lifelong salesman.
    And Rikki Tikki Tembo.
    And The Five Chinese Brothers.

    I love the library.

    I get carried away.

  7. Congrats on the site!
    I can’t remember what I liked, but my older daughter loved the Berenstain Bears books, and my younger daughter loves Magic TreeHouse and Magic School Bus.

  8. Way to go site pimp! Me and my sis always liked Tomie DePaola books and Barrenstein Bears books rocked! I think we had all 3359894357 of them.

  9. Ooooo! “Lights Out” by John Himmelman (I think). Toots can’t get enough of it.

    Also, “My Monster Mama Loves Me” (I think). It’s a little simple for the older kids, but the imagery and language is funny-smooky.

    AND, Linda Arms Whites’ “Comes A Wind,” and “Too Many Pumpkins.”

    Sensing a theme? You’d be right. Toots is a smookologist.

  10. It’s an unbelievably great feeling when your kids love the same books you did.

    My kids love Where The Wild Things Are, which is one of my all time favorite books. We’ve also been reading chapters out of The Wizard of Oz.

    I read a lot of Dr. Seuss when I was a kid, but my kids haven’t really caught on to it. I’m waiting to read them The Velveteen Rabbit, another of my faves, just because I think it will prompt many questions that I’m not ready to answer.

    And the fortune cookie site is so cool! I love it when he goes, “Yippeee!” and starts typing away. Awesome!

  11. Helen — I’ve never heard of it — yay! Will check it out.

    DG — I don’t know WHY, but we’ve never read Harold. I know he’s a classic — I’ll put it on my Must Read List.

    underthebigbluesky — Another I haven’t heard of! We’ll look for it.

    Jess — Thanks Doog — I had SO much fun working on it. As for books, Alexander is a big fave from childhood — I’ve promised my mom that SHE can buy it for MP (it’s kinda her thing). Awesome suggestion though — anyone who hasn’t read it should!

    aliasmother — I forgot about Frances! Good one. Harry rocks — we have that one. (Great minds, and all …) And Suess — bomb diggity.

    Lucky Me — Ooh, Caps for Sale! Totally remember that one — I’ll have to find it! Tikki Tikki Tembo is also a big fave — the same woman who wrote it, wrote (retold) The Funny Little Woman! I don’t know The Five Chinese Brothers, though — thanks!

    April — MP loves the BBs too. I’ll have to look up Magic TreeHouse and Magic School Bus — thanks!

    pisceshanna — What are the Tomie DePaola books? Am Googling now. Thx!

    SDM — SQUEEE! I don’t know any of those, but Toots and MP would get along perfectly (wonder where they get their smookieness??) — can’t wait to check ’em out!

    BC — Thanks for the props 🙂 … WTWTA is a staple at our house too — isn’t it the best? I’ve been thinking about the Wizard of Oz for awhile now — we may have to give it a shot soon. How do your kids do with actual CHAPTERS?!? And The Velveteen Rabbit — awesome. I still have my old copy from childhood that we read together. *sniff*

  12. “Parts” — kinda gross and very funny
    “The Bake Shop Ghost” — none of us get tired of it
    “How I Became a Pirate” — funny and fantastic illustrations
    “Once Upon a Time, The End (Asleep in 60 Seconds)” — parents should LOVE this, and kids definitely do
    “Snoring Beauty” — a new one and a favorite. Princess turned into a dragon who snores, hilarity ensues. Three thumbs up.


    “The Silly Book” — a childhood favorite of mine, it has bitten me in the butt because kids like it and I HATE IT

    Yay you, go to the “libarry” for me! Chas used to take the girls to the library and I was so jealous. Have fun.

  13. Well, when I was little (we’re talking toddler age), I LOVED The Best Nest although I do remember being a little distressed by it. *sniff, sniff*

    Anyhoo, my littlest one doesn’t really likes The Peace Book — very cute and thoroughly recommended for all peace loving doogs!

  14. When the kids were smaller, I loved “Cat’s Pyjamas” by Thacher Hurd. It has a rhythm that just can’t be denied. I’m pretty sure I have the whole book memorized even though I don’t own it. Hey! Why don’t I own it?
    BTW, I got library cards for my older two kids this week. I had to sign the back, but they each put their names on the front with a Sharpie. Too cute!

  15. Foolery — I’m getting ALL the books you recommended cause I know they’ll be awesome. I’ve seen Parts, and have almost bought it a million times. Now I will!

    Karen — Oooh — we love The Best Nest too … and I’ll have to look up The Peace Book for sure!

    Beth — Okay, I’m totally feeling out of touch — there are so many of these books I don’t know! Sheesh. I’ll check out Cat’s Pyjamas for sure. Hooray for the library cards — isn’t it fun?

  16. When you’re readyfor chapter books, try Roald Dahl, the Witches. Fun for adults, too.

  17. We’re totally making a trip to the book store. You, me, kid’s books, lunch. it’ll be awesome.

  18. My older one does pretty good with a chapter at a time. She will ask to do a new chapter, which just warms my heart. I’m going to start the Laura Ingalls books that way.

    Have you guys read “Don’t let the pigeon drive the bus?” My kids freaking love that one too. Also, “Click Clack Moo,” “Olivia,” and “No, David!” We just started reading “Parts”. I think it’s hilarious, but the kids are still warming up to it. Caroline’s eyes get huge when the stuff starts falling off of him.

    Another GREAT one is this:

    Sorry for the long link, but my kids adore the retelling of these 3 fairy tales and the illustrations are fantastic.

    Sorry to go on and on, I could talk about kids books all day!

  19. ANYTHING by Shel Silverstein.
    Ditto Maurice Sendak.

  20. Blissfully already mentioned mine – we LOVE the Pigeon books here. That guy is too snarky.

    We also like:
    Harry the Dirty Dog
    anything by Beverly Cleary (who is required reading)
    For a mix of music and the written word, try:
    Philadelphia Chickens
    The Jazz Fly

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