Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Just Plain Old Funny Books -

     I don't know about you, but where I live we are having the rainiest summer I've ever known. I personally love rain. Not the constant drizzle or threatening clouds of Hawaii or Oregon, but the huge summer thunderstorms that plague my home town. To me, crashing thunder is just another great excuse to snuggle up in bed with a lovely book. Unfortunately not everyone in my household feels this way. For those of us that thrive in the sun and imagined a 100 degree summer of beach bathing, swimming, and lots of ice cream - the ridiculous amount of rain may come as a bit of a downer. So I propose....a book list! Surprise, surprise.
    These books make great family read alouds. They are simply a list of my favorite short, simple, funny, and positive books. No deep themes, no scary moments, no intellectual symbolism - just a lot of fun. Wether you are thriving in this wetter then wetness or struggling in the deluge, I am sure you will find something here to enjoy:

Mr. Poppers Penguins 

  My mother read this story to me when I was a very young girl. The ridiculous nature of the plot mixed with the simple, lovable, and believable Popper family, makes for a hilarious adventure you'll never forget. From walking penguins down the street on leashes to creating habitats in freezers, this book is sure to charm, captivate, and tickle.

Pippi Longstocking - Astrid Lindgreen

  Pippi was (for better or for worse ) one of my first role models. She's a free-spirited orphan that lives alone and has astounding adventures with the neighbor kids: keeping animals in the house, buying ice cream for all the kids in town, and cleaning by racing around the kitchen with scrubs attached to her feet. Her adventures are exciting and yet not wholly unbelievable. There is one particular episode ( the chapter with the policemen coming to take her to an orphanage) that is sure to bring everyone a good hearty laugh. I still remember attempting to sleep with my feet on my pillow and my head under my covers, I wanted to be as strong, unique, and hilarious as Pippi Longstocking.

Mrs. Piggle Wiggle - Betty Macdonald

  Mrs. Piggle can cure any child rearing problem with a quirky sense of wisdom and a whole lot of fun. As a kid I used to love to read about the fun way Piggle Wiggle tackled bratty kids. She was an inspiration to me, one of the first fictional characters I dreamed " to be like when I grow up."

The Whipping Boy - Sid Fleischman
   This is the book that turned my reluctant reader little brother into an avid book devourer. What hooked him? An edge-of-your-seat-adventure, roll on the floor humor, and simple language make this a classic introduction to the wonders of the written page

The Monster at the End of This Book - Jon Stone
   Fun and exciting, this is a board book everyone will get a lil kick out of.

Diary of a Worm - Harry Bliss  
    Beautiful illustrations mixed with hilarious dialog bring this into the higher class of picture books. Its slightly dry but ridiculously funny humor make it something the entire family could enjoy reading together.

Amelia Bedelia - Peggy Parish 

   A classic tall of misunderstanding, Amelia Bedelia is a lovable housemaid that takes everything literally. From dressing the chicken ( in bows and ribbons ) to dusting the living room ( rather then de-dusting it), she always manages to exasperate her employer, fascinate her readers, and bake a perfect pie at the end of the day to make everyone happy. This is quite frankly my favorite young readers series. If you haven't read her yet, do not waste any time.

   What are your favorite laugh alouds?

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