Picture Book Month: Pets

Using the Picture Book Month Calendar, I am going to post five favorite picture books of mine for each day of November. Today’s theme is pets.

Pets are frequent characters in children’s books, both in the published variety and in the stories children write themselves. Growing up, I adored Norman Bridwell’s Clifford. I remember being super excited in high school to buy some of these books in Spanish to go with my copies in English (Scholastic book orders were dangerous things for me at any age). When I worked with first grade, they were all about Alyssa Satin Capucilli’s Biscuit books. There are books with unusual pets like the hippo in Margaret Mahy’s The Boy Who Was Followed Home. There are books about invisible pets like Syd Hoff’s The Horse in Harry’s Room. There are books with dinosaurs as pets, but dinosaurs are for another day.

The five picture books listed today are pulled from this year’s reading. You’ll find some normal pets as well as a big, purple pet in this list (though Ollie might object to being called a pet).

1. Bailey by Harry Bliss. Bailey heads off to school with the rest of the class, but he’s a lot furrier than the other students.

2. Prudence Wants a Pet by Cathleen Daly. Prudence will have a pet. It’s just a matter of figuring out what pet she wants that her mother will allow as well.

3. Ollie the Purple Elephant by Jarrett Krososcka. I love the dance parties in this book about an elephant who finds a family.

4. Melvin and the Boy by Lauren Castillo. A boy adopts a turtle.

5. One Cool Friend by Toni Buzzeo (out in 2012). Most people don’t sneak home penguins from the museum as pets, but that’s not stopping Elliott.

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