To start the year off, I have chosen a chapter book that is funny and that demonstrates to great effect how simple everyday adventures can be turned into a delightful story.
Illustrated by David Slonim
For ages 6 to 8
Chronicle Books, 2009, 978-0-8118-5609-6
When Jeremy Bean’s friend Max brings his seed collection to school, he causes quite a stir, especially when the teacher, Mrs. Tucker, says that the other students can bring their collections to school if they want.
As soon as he gets home, Jeremy sets about trying to put a collection together. Jeremy tries to collect shoes, but his mother objects, so he goes outside and he picks up a rock, a stick, and a bug, and he puts them in his pocket. No he has the beginnings of three collections!
Then Jeremy goes to see what his friend Winnie is up to, and he finds out that she is collecting rocks, so Jeremy gives her the pretty rock he found. Luke is collecting sticks, so Jeremy gives him the stick that he has in his pocket. By the time Jeremy gets home, the bug that he collected is gone. Jeremy is going to be “the only kid in the whole class with no collection,” and he feels very glum about this state of affairs. Thankfully, something his grandfather says inspires Jeremy to come up with a unique collection, one that will truly last for years to come.
Young readers who are comfortable with reading chapter books will love this title. There are three stories that are broken up into chapters, and each one shows to great effect how one little boy tackles everyday problems that he encounters. With humor and a keen appreciation for how a child thinks and feels, Alice Schertle’s stories provide young readers with a memorable reading experience.