Tag: books

The gift the kids will love to ruin

With the kids heading back to school, the birthday party circuit will be starting up again. If your kid is old enough to read, you may understand my temptation to give other kids books rather than more toys. The problem is that while their parents might love you for it, not every kid is delighted to receive a book. Except that every kid will be delighted to receive this book: Keri Smith’s Wreck This Journal. It’s a masterpiece manual of embracing creativity and bucking the ordinary, and entirely made to be destroyed. Really! So yes, by all means, write...

Read More

Excessively motivated parents, your owners manual has arrived

After researching my proposal for my own parenting book (Ahem, Sleep Is for the Weak, shameless plug, shameless plug) I thought I’d read every baby handbook on earth. And, I admit it, I became really jaded and snooty about them. Let’s just say there’s a lot of rehashing going on in the baby humor world and it’s hard to find a fresh perspective. The Perfect Baby Handbook: A Guide for Excessively Motivated Parents is totally different. Talented ex-Radar writer and Details creative director Dale Hrabi has produced a half graphic novel, half biting satire that had me at “competitive...

Read More

Our favorite dolls get ink

We love Melissa Conroy’s Wooberry dolls. The originals are not only designed from her child’s sketches, they’re also handmade. And beyond adorable. In a move that touches my writerly heart, the dolls have gone meta and returned to their paper-based roots in pOppy’s pants, Conroy’s first (and hopefully not only) book. Featuring pOppy and pEnelope, two of Conroy’s signature dolls, this picture book combines photography and drawings and had my daughter and me wondering just how much sewing did Melissa have to do to get this book created? I especially love the postcript by the author’s father, Pat, which...

Read More

Childrearing advice for when you’ve misplaced your gay uncle

Fellow blogger and Vanity Fair contributor Brett Berk has unleashed on the world his parenting perspective with The Gay Uncle’s Guide to Parenting: Candid Counsel From the Depths of the Daycare Trenches. Berk obviously has no uterus and no children. That said, you may be asking yourself where does he get off giving me advice? But what he does have is nearly twenty years of experience as a classroom teacher and preschool director, plus a wicked directness I find strangely endearing. Forget Supernanny — send me Brett Berk, stat. Certainly this book will offend some people. Berk believes in...

Read More

Oh, this old thing? It’s just my impossibly fashionable Sudoku book.

Whether you need a last-minute Mother’s Day gift or just want to appear more stylish than everyone else while waiting for the pediatrician, I love the Posh Puzzle books by The Puzzle Society. These are the people who bring you nationally syndicated crosswords and jumbles in papers like the Washington Post and the L.A. Times, so you know the puzzles inside aren’t an afterthought to the chic covers outside. What’s different from your run-of-the-mill Sudoku book you grab in the airport gift shop? For one thing, Posh Sudoku looks and feels good, with a black-and-white flocked cover and elegant...

Read More

DAD IS SLEEPING AS HE ENJOYED THE WHISKEY AT THE PARTY and other hilarious emails from your mother

For years, I’ve saved the emails my mom has sent me. Some are funny, some are sweet, some are nothing anyone else would appreciate besides maybe my brother. I thought I was the only person nostalgic enough to do such a thing, until I discovered Love, Mom: Poignant, Brilliant, Goofy Messages From Home from the creators of the blog Postcards From Yo Momma. Dorrie Shafir and Jessica Grose have put together this wonderful compilation of all sorts of emails, IMs and social networking messages (eek, moms on Facebook!) that will have you in stitches with warnings of computer “STDs”,...

Read More

When you need your own personal children’s librarian

What happens when you need to find a book on heroes the night before your kid needs it for kindergarten? After you’ve exhausted our favorite children’s books, you can do what I did and check out the selections in What to Read When, by LitLife founder Pam Allyn. This meta-book about books is divided into 50 themes, from bullying to spirituality to a bad day. Find your category, read the summaries and pick your winner. From Allyn’s words to my library hold — it sure beats prying the trashy cartoon books out of my daughter’s hands at 6 PM....

Read More

Books for boys, beyond baseball

When I go to teacher conferences, the thing I hear the most about my son– always said with great reverence– is, Wow, he sure likes to read! I come from an entire family of readers, so this doesn’t seem odd to me… but it is odd, because boys trail girls in literacy, and often it takes extra effort to get them into a book when there are video games to be played. One mother decided to take matters into her own hands, and that’s when Book Club 4 Boys was born. Not only does her blog make recommendations on...

Read More

I always knew books could save the world

I suppose they could’ve come up with a different name for Better World Books, but when you’re really making a better world for everyone through a love of books, well, the name fits. Perfectly. Next time you shop for books, consider the option that is both saving books from the landfills–more than 13 million so far–and directly funding literacy efforts worldwide. Basically it’s like shopping one of those big sites but with way better karma. Shipping is always free in the United States ( just $3.97 for the rest of the world), with every book shipped carbon-neutral thanks to...

Read More

Definitely not your grandma’s book club

Giving the gift of bibliophilia just became effortless–certainly more effortless than spelling bibliophilia. Left to my own devices, I’d pick an assortment of books for a kid and wrap it up and call it good. GiftLit definitely makes it stupendous with gift series that keep on giving. Choose 3, 6 or 12 months worth of book gifts, targeted by very specific age, gender, and even genre, all of which are recommended by a very impressive panel of selection experts. You’ll find series about animals or things that go for little ones, young adult classics, and even several series of...

Read More

Put some more money in the therapy fund

If How to Traumatize Your Children had been available when I remarried, I totally would’ve bought it as a wedding present for my husband. I think it would’ve been a fitting welcome to (step)parenthood for him, and I also plan to give it as a shower gift to every less-than-confident parent-to-be from now on. Sure, it’s just a little jokey gift book–it is from the Self-Hurt Series, after all. But it’s so much more; a great reminder that we survived all of our parents’ mistakes and our children will survive ours. Probably. With therapy. The 1950s-style illustrations of various...

Read More

You’re never too little to be a bibliophile. Only to know how to spell it.

Like tons of practical moms like me, my favorite gift to give or to get is a book. And if you want to get fancy about it, check out Bookworm Baskets, where the great book is just the beginning of a fantastic gift. It starts with a fabulous read like The Giving Tree, Olivia, or baby faves like Ten Little Rubber Ducks and  includes other eco-friendly, educational items all themed around it. Even the packaging is eco-friendly. But what’s really special about the service is that your book comes with an Eco-Libris sticker to show that a tree was...

Read More

No, G is Not for Guiliani

Abc_book_cover New York City can teach a child any number of things. Like how to distinguish a Bangladeshi cab driver accent from a Pakistani one. Or how to learn to share toys with Uma’s daughter in the sandbox of the Bleecker Street playground. Now, NYC is also teaching children their ABCs.

Read More

Pin It on Pinterest