Great Gifts For Young Readers

Back when my eldest was a toddler, we started a family tradition. For each birthday and Christmas, our pets gave her a couple special books as gifts, and “asked” her to read the books to them. ¬† The tradition continues today, with both of our girls looking forward to what books the dogs, fish, and bunny have chosen for them. ūüôā This year, our pets will be gifting our five year old with some fantastic reads from Sterling Publishing: Puff the Magic Dragon, Fluff and Billy and Sad Santa.

Puff the Magic Dragon from Sterling Publishing

This beautiful board book is full of stunning paintings by Eric Puybaret, and the original text written by Peter Yarrow and Lenny Lipton  over 50 years ago.  I have to admit, it is the first time I have known all of the words to Puff the Magic Dragon!  The book tells the story of a big old dragon, and his wonderful friendship with a boy named Little Jackie Paper.

Puff the Magic Dragon
Puff the Magic Dragon

They were the best of friends, and spent their days on adventures in the land of Honalee. ¬†But eventually, Jackie grew up, and no longer came to play. ¬†Poor Puff was left without his life-long friend, and he slunk back to his cave, sad and depressed. ¬†Wonderfully, a girl eventually meets Puff, and he finds a new best friend. ¬†Puff once again “Frolicked in the autumn mist, In a land called Honalee!”

Puff the Magic Dragon
Puff the Magic Dragon

And, although this is a board book, which folks sometimes think are just for babies and toddlers, this book has appeal to older kids too.  I shared Puff the Magic Dragon with some kindergarteners, and they loved its gorgeous pictures and clever rhymes.  Besides, Puff the Magic Dragon is just one of those classic stories ever kids needs on their bookshelf.  Are you singing the Puff the Magic Dragon song in your head yet?  I sure am!

Fluff and Billy from Sterling Publishing

This touching story is about Fluff and Billy, two penguin buddies. ¬†Author/Illustrator, Nicola Killen tells Fluff and Billy’s story of friendship and forgiveness with adorable pictures and minimal words. ¬†Fluff and Billy do everything together – that is until a rogue snowball hits Fluff, and he decides not to talk to Billy anymore. ¬†But during their silence, the two penguins realize how much they care for one another, and before you know it, they are back to being best friends. ¬†This cleverly written and illustrated book gets across the importance of forgiveness using few words.

Fluff and Billy
Fluff and Billy

It’s amazing how well Ms. Killen can portray complex feelings with her simple paintings. ¬†The page where Billy sheds a tear because he is missing his special friendship with Fluff tugs at my heart every time I look at it! ¬†It must have tugged at Fluff’s heart too, because that is when he realizes it is time to forgive his friend and get on with their special friendship.

Fluff and Billy

I think Lila, my kindergartener, will really enjoy reading this one to our dogs. ¬†It’s limited words and story-telling illustrations will empower her to read out loud to her furry friends, despite being an early reader. ¬†ūüôā ¬†And let’s face it, we ALL can use a reminder of just how important special friendships are, and how important it is to forgive and forget. ¬†Who better than a couple of chubby penguins to help get that point across?!

Sad Santa from Sterling Publishing

Sad and Santa don’t seem to belong in a sentence together, but in this clever book by author and illustrator Tad Carpenter, Santa is truly sad!

Sad Santa
Sad Santa

Tad’s retro-styled illustrations tell the story of Santa and his struggles to feel happy once Christmas is over. ¬†Santa’s friends and Mrs. Clause try to cheer him up, even taking him on a vacation to the beach, but nothing seems to do the trick. ¬†Santa still feels no longer needed.

Sad Santa
Sad Santa

Just when things are looking hopeless for Santa, he receives a letter from a young boy requesting Santa’s help in providing some wonderful gifts for his family – not anything for himself, just some fantastic, over the top gifts for his family. ¬†Santa is touched by the boy’s request, and gets busy planning how to fulfill the child’s request. ¬†He decides that ALL the children need him 365 days a year.

Sad Santa
Sad Santa

Mr. Carpenter reminds us that what Santa learned, and what we should learn, is that we should care for each other, and reach out to one another not just at Christmas, but every day.  Just like Santa, we have a purpose 365 days a year.  So sweet!

Buy These Great Children’s Books From Sterling Publishing

Clearly, these 3 books are fantastic picks for holiday gifts! ¬†You can purchase these books directly on Sterling Publishing’s website, or from online retailers like Barnes and Noble and ¬†If you prefer to shop local, your hometown bookstores should have these books too, or be able to order them for you in short order!

Sterling Publishing on Twitter

Win These Great Children’s Books From Sterling Publishing

Our generous friends at Sterling Publishing are offering 3 lucky readers a set of each of these 3 fantastic books.  Retail value for the set is $37.85.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook. In order to comply with the latest Facebook Promotion Guidelines (revised 5/11/11), the following statements are true:

* Giveaway participants release Facebook from any responsibility whatsoever.
* Giveaways on this blog are in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
* Giveaway participants are providing information to this blog and giveaway sponsors only; not to Facebook.

30 Day Winning Rule applies. For complete contest rules, please see our Contest Statement and Blog Disclosure.

Contest ends at 11:59pm EST on December 15, 2012 when a winner will be drawn at random. I will notify the winners and they will have 36 hours to respond or another winner will be selected!

This was not a paid post. My own opinions were used based on my perceptions and experience.  Thank you to Sterling Publishing who provided the products for review and giveaway.

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Beth celebrates the everyday wonders of life with a keen eye for deals, a flare for the color green, and an honest desire to share with her fellow moms here in town! Check out more of Beth's recent articles, and subscribe to our daily email/rss feed to see what she writes next!
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