As is true with Easter frocks and suits, as well as Easter baskets and toys; certain children gravitate toward specific Easter and Spring-themed books. I went to my local public library and found some delicious reading options for children of various ages. Whether they need to be read to, need to do research Easter or Spring, or want to be intrigued – children will find something that fits their interests in the catalog of books that I read and reviewed. I detail them below:
Holidays & Celebrations: Easter, Passover and Other Spring Festivities. See picture #1 (upper right)
The introduction is worth a glance, and the photos are drawn from real celebration events. I love that they started the book with Easter. This would make it a great read for Christian children.
This book was well organized, except it used the word “festivities” too loosely, even for the Christian holiday Easter. I think Easter is too sacred and such a centerpiece of the Christian faith that it merits a different classification. It explained that Easter is a “moveable feast,” and explained how the celebration dates change each year.
It used to confuse me that we sometimes had Easter in March and sometimes in April; so I think this explanation in the book will be a blessing to readers who’d like to understand how this works. The 40 Days of Lent, and other “festivities” are also covered in this edition. This hard-cover book is part of a series by Chelsea House, New York. Infobase Publishing has put out a slew of similar holiday books. Copyright 2009.
The Great Easter Egg Hunt. See picture #2 (upper right).
A puzzle mystery for a child who likes a challenge, this engaging book is referred to aptly as a “look again book.” The reader will need a pencil and paper while reading this book.
Cleverly done, it features Tommy, whose aunt leaves instructions for him and readers so they can find specific hidden items. The hidden items are spread over the span of the book. The clues are poetic, and show up at about every other page in boxes similar to post-it notes. My favorites included the letter message on a huge egg (it’s almost like a word find). There is also the 2-page spread challenging readers to find the things that don’t belong in the large picture.
The answer key is found in the back.
Readers should not rush through this book. When they finish, they can share the book or read it again for an improved performance. Written by Michael Garland, the Dutton Children’s Book (NY) published in 2005.
The Runaway Bunny. See picture #3 (upper right)
This book is one a mother could read to her child. It tells the story of a bunny who is thinking of running away. When he tells his mother his plans, she responds with her ideas for how find him and re-unite with him. Eventually, he resolves to stay. It has this strong mother-love message, so it’s a great bonding book.
Written by Margaret Wise Brown, this 1942 Harper Collins (NY) book has delicate and winsome illustrations by Edith T. Hard and George Hellyer.
In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb. See picture #4 (upper right)
There are some guess/predict aspects to this book that children will love. It is a poetic romping through the month of March. It tells what the weather is like when the lion is in charge, and what it is like when the lamb is on the scene.
Great for any poetry-loving child, this book is written by Marion Dane Bauer and illustrated by Emily Arnold McCully. It is a Holiday House Book (NY).
The Easter Bunny’s Assistant. See picture #5 (upper right)
Is there an assistant mismatch? A rabbit has the help (or not) of an excitable skunk as he shows children how to dye Easter eggs. Children can read and do with this book – they will need crayons, food coloring, vinegar, a saucepan, and a supervising parent. The instructions are spread out over the pages, with a one-page repetition in the back.
I think the safety reminder found in the back of the book should be on the front page, but readers can always turn to it and read it before getting started. Written by Jan Thomas, this Harper Collins (NY) book was copyrighted in 2012.
The Easter Bunny That Overslept. Not pictured
This engaging story was first published in 1957 and features a bunny that doesn’t just oversleep by minutes or hours, but by a month or more! He doesn’t awake until May, and he was supposed to be responsible for delivering eggs to the children on Easter. Imagine the response when he shows up so horribly late! No matter how he rushes, no matter how he tries to make up for his lapse; he can not regain the lost opportunity. This book teaches the downside of oversleeping. This book is written by Priscilla & Otto Friedrich and illustrated by Donald Saaf. Copyright 2002.
Like hidden eggs, treats and candy in a yard on Easter, the six selections here will be enjoyable reads for children. No book stands as a perfect solution, a lot depends on what your young reader likes, needs, and prefers; as well as what parental preferences.