Tag: books

Your bookshelf needs this ninja. Unless the ninja’s already there…

Ninjas are very stealthy and there could very well already be one on your child’s bookshelf, hiding between The House on Pooh Corner and Goodnight, Moon. As for the the ninja in the board book Hello Ninja, don’t worry. He’s helpful and well-mannered and only chops watermelons. When I first opened up Hello Ninja, the author’s name kept ringing a bell. That’s because ND Wilson also wrote the 100 Cupboards series for middle graders, which I loved. That same optimism and sweetness can be found in Hello Ninja, which brings the universal appeal of ninjas to the level of board...

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Josephine: A children’s book as complex, vibrant, and endearing as Josephine Baker herself.

It’s clear that Josephine Baker is one of those few celebrity icons who transcends generations. My parents loved her, I loved her, and now my girls love her thanks to the new book, Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker. And despite it being a book for kids, if it weren’t for Christian Robinson’s wonderful illustrations, you might think it was an adult-targeted poetic ode to the legendary performer. Patricia Hruby Powell’s prose feels like jazz itself, dancing across the pages with a kind of defiant playfulness; the random line breaks, indentations, metaphors, erratic use of all-cap words are writers’ tools...

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The Crabtree book will make your kids laugh, make them think, possibly make them want to clean.

I don’t know about you, but when I pick up a kids’ book published by McSweeney’s McMullens, and endorsed by the likes of Maira Kalman, Lemony Snicket, and Patton Oswald, it’s a pretty good bet that I will need to bring it home immediately, hand it to my children, and insist that they declare it their favorite. Enter: Crabtree by Jon and Tucker Nichols. Fortunately I didn’t have to insist on such a thing, since my children, especially my six-year-old, fell immediately, madly in love with the quirky, hilarious story of Alfred Crabtree’s search for his missing false teeth. His quest requires...

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Getting the party started thanks to Soleil Moon Frye

If you’re looking to amp your your kids’ birthday parties this year with a little more DIY, I feel you. While I’m not a huge crafter by any means, there’s something really gratifying about putting together goodie bags yourself around some crazy theme your daughter insists on, or planning an activity that the kids still talk about at the next year’s party. Or maybe my bar is just low? If that sounds familiar, then you’ll want to check out Let’s Get This Party Started! : DIY Celebrations for You and Your Kids to Create Together from TV mainstay turned parenting app...

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The best board books for babies of 2013: Editors’ Best of 2013

To start 2014, we’re excited to feature the best board books for babies of 2013 that we fell in love with. Because honestly, our babies fell in love with them too. And not just because the cardboard covers taste delicious. If there’s ever one New Year’s resolution we all want to keep, it’s “read more.” And we think that “read more to our kids” fits in there, too. When you’ve already got 16 copies of Goodnight Moon, we hope these picks help fill out your baby’s library beautifully. Alphablock ABC book Alphabet books have come a long way, baby. The...

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The best cookbooks for families (that you’ll actually cook from!): Editors’ Best of 2013

By now, you’ve probably come across several Best Cookbooks of 2013 lists, each filled with drool-worthy tomes that would make great coffee table staples. But if you want to gift your favorite family cook — including yourself — a cookbook that’s actually useful in a busy home kitchen, check out my favorite family cookbooks of 2013 as part of our Editors’ Picks of 2013 series. Filled with mouthwatering photos and doable dishes, these books not only make pretty gifts, but they also make practical ones. Which is pretty much what every parent needs.   Keepers (above) is among my favorite cookbooks...

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The best books for kids 2013: A round-up of the best 2013 round-ups of the best books for kids.

We wanted to find the best books for kids in 2013, but over 1350 books are published every week! It’s easy to miss a story your kids would love. So we’ve rounded up 15 of the best round-ups on the internet from all kinds of writers, editors and bloggers, of this year’s best books especially for children. May you find the perfect kids’ books to gift wrap under the tree.   1. 13 Best Children’s, Illustrated, and Picture Books  via Brain Pickings The Mighty LaLouche by Matthew Olshan and Sophie Blackall You know this list from the wonderful site Brain Pickings...

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A personalized Night Before Christmas book makes for a very special storytime

Reading The Night Before Christmas is a holiday staple in our house, though this new personalized Night Before Christmas book for kids that stars one special child throughout the pages is sure to be the new Christmas favorite for years to come. Best of all? Though the little personalized touches are found on almost every page, it only takes a few minutes to get this special gift all wrapped up before Santa’s sleigh takes flight.     One of Chronicle Books’ personalized gifts which we’ve written about before, Night Before Christmas is a vividly illustrated and fun-to-read twist on Clement Moore’s classic. Personalize...

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Marry Mr. Darcy? Nah, eat him instead.

Oddly enough, I’m not talking about literary Halloween zombies; I’m talking about cookies. Specifically, those made with this adorable set of Jane Austen cookie cutters. Because honestly, I’ve always wanted to take a bite out of Darcy.  We have yet another reason to celebrate 3-D printers, thanks to these cool cookie cutters printed to order from Netherlands Etsy shop Printmeneer, featuring silhouettes of Mr. Darcy and Jane Austen herself.  Use them to cut cookie dough, fondant, clay, or soft cheese. How cute would these be, iced? Or hanging as ornaments from the tree? After all, it is a truth universally...

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The best-ever bandages for bibliophiles

Because as fabulous as neon, ponies, and Dora can be, this line of literary bandages are a lot more fun for adults–especially those who love Poe, Shakespeare, or Jane Austen. Who wouldn’t want a little Poe for that Halloween zombie bite wound? Each metal tin from Archie McPhee holds 15 standard-size bandages–or “plasters,” if you want to get all British about it. Our favorites are from Edgar Allan Poe, Jane Austen, and Shakespeare, but there are tons of designs from pickles to caution tape to Abraham Lincoln. Let’s face it, they’re a lot cooler than the designs at your...

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From bridges to bicycles, we’ve found the best collection of bookends ever

There’s no excuse in the world for boring bookends. And this shop is the end-all, be-all of bookends, with everything from animals to plants to robots.  Design Atelier Article is a Ukrainian artisan duo that creates super cool minimalist bookends in laser-cut steel with vibrant, powder-coated finishes. They’re seriously awesome. You’ll find bears, horses, cats, keys, pears, and tons of the most popular motifs are just waiting to sit on your bookshelf–or your children’s, of course. Some of them are even on sale, including those cool octopus tentacles–you’ll just have to check them all out and squeal.  The artists...

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Heading to NY? Free author events for kids at MoMA Design Store NYC!

If you are going to pick the perfect time to visit New York City, you could do a lot worse than fall. The family-friendly options here seem endless this time of year. So whether you live in town or you are building an itinerary for your special Saturday visiting the Big Apple, we’d like to suggest adding the MoMA Design Store to your schedule. Yes, for kids. Set on the charming Spring Street in Soho, the MoMA store has been a long time shopping favorite of ours. We were extra pleasantly surprised to discover that in addition to the killer...

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The loveliest literary prints we’ve seen. And you can quote us on that.

Thoughtful quotes from amazing writers rank high on my list of favorite things. And a favorite literary quote deserves only the loveliest of typography. Fortunately, this collection of hand-lettered designs fits the bill, with beautiful words and beautiful art. These beautiful prints spring from a collaboration between artist Emily McDowell and Design Mom, who we just love. Each print features a favorite quote from a classic book, hand-lettered digitally and printed in archival ink.   Li Each print is available in several different sizes and also as a greeting card. That Shakespeare quote from A Midsummer Night’s Dream is...

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Who are you wearing? Oh, Jane Austen.

Shirts with a book cover or favorite quote are pretty cool. But you get even more bibliophile points for wearing a shirt with the entire book’s text permanently embedded in the fabric. If you loved these book posters we covered, get ready to shop. Wordies, listen up. The Litographs site is heaven for bibliophiles. They take your favorite classic books and use 75,000 words from the text to create interesting designs that go with the story. And then you can have it hand printed (front and back) on a soft cotton/poly blend shirt, poster, or bag in a variety...

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Zoobean: Personal book recommendations for your one-of-a-kind kid

Finding just the right books for your child can be, well, challenging–especially if your kid is as finicky about what she reads as what she eats: No peas, broccoli, or dumb princess books, thank you. So I love this cool, custom service made to create your kid’s dream reading list. {EDITED TO ADD: Zoobean is currently not taking on any new subscribers.} Hooray for Zoobean. Created by a mom-and-dad duo who were struggling to find kids’ books with biracial main characters for their son and daughter, this book-curating subscription service does the searching for you. Also perfect for those...

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Bella and Harry: Books to take children around the world in 35 pages

My kids are increasingly fascinated by travel and different cities around the world, but alas, I’ve yet to find that spare million in my old jacket pocket that will allow us to travel the globe every year. Still, this new book series for kids is a really wonderful way to get kids excited about the culture, history, landmarks and foods of the great cities of the world.  The Adventures of Bella and Harry are a series of 10 books by Lisa Manzione in which our heroes, two cute chihuahuas, hit one city at a time. They books read less like...

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Making your walls a little more literary

I love prints that play with typography. Clever, modern design has a way of turning what could be a cheesy inspirational quote into a piece of art I could live with.   That’s why I love the work by New York graphic artist Evan Roberts on Etsy. These cool literary quote posters inspired by the likes of T.S. Eliot (no, not from Cats), JD Salinger, Jane Austen, Ernest Hemmingway, Kurt Vonnegut. It’s refreshing to see he hasn’t generally picked the most ubiquitous of quotes. Each one is printed beautifully on heavy, archival paper. Look closely and you’ll find lots...

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Father’s Day gifts from the kids: 2013 Father’s Day Gift Guide

Nothing is sweeter than a Father’s Day gift that really truly comes from the kids. Whether they make a card (still our all-time favorite gift), get crafty, or pick out something a little fancier, here are some fun Father’s Day gift ideas “from the kids.” Even if they’re not the ones paying. Yet. Also: Don’t miss our huge Father’s Day Gift Guide Giveaway! Details below. Father’s Day photo from the kids (above) It’s so easy to have them hold big letters from a craft store, or just their own letters hand-colored onto construction paper. (Free tutorial at No Biggie) Custom...

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Literature in bloom

I’m not usually one for fake flowers around the house–I much prefer the real thing. But when they’re as cool and crafty as these, I could easily make an exception. Julie Romero’s Handmade Paper Flowers are all made to order with 50 blooms crafted from recycled books. I happen to like the ones from classics like Pride and Prejudice and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland; but you can also find popular favorites like The Notebook or Twilight. (Although shouldn’t those be dead flowers? Anyway.) It’s a cool gift for a writerly type, a literary lover, or just someone who appreciates...

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Cooper and Kid: an “awesome box” just for dads.

It was inevitable that with the proliferation of monthly boxes for moms, that someone would come along with a version for dads. And we’re pleased to see it has nothing to do with “reminding” dads that they are incapable of cooking or changing diapers; but rather, it’s about dads who like to play with their kids. Shocker, right?     The stunningly designed and conceived Cooper and Kid box is jam packed with $65 worth of fun–which had honestly be a whole lot of fun at that price point. Still, it seems to give you your money’s worth in...

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