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Kids’ Books, Grown-Up Reviews

A little known part of Gould library is its children’s book section. Located on the fourth floor in the Rookery, it is the perfect place to take a study break and travel back into childhood. We reviewed a couple of classics and a new find for when you are considering which book to read.

The Lorax

Dr. Seuss
4.5/5 stars
A timeless tale of men with large mustaches telling people what to
do, the story revolves around the ever-present battle between environmentalism and big business. An entrepreneur moves into the flourishing ecosystem with its staple of Truffula Trees. After cutting down several trees for his new business, the Lorax, fluent in the dialect of Truffula tree, urges the newcomer to reconsider the impact of his company. The story continues to escalate as habitat loss effects creatures such as Swomee Swans. The book ends on a hopeful note with the distribution of the last Truffula tree seed. The only complaint about the novel: Dr. Seuss’ use of vocabulary is sub-par at best.

Rapunzel

Paul O. Zelinsky
4/5 stars
In a twist on this classic tale, Rapunzel takes charge of her own life and still ends up with two babies and a handsome prince. Despite not having many options, Rapunzel and the prince’s relationship was surprisingly healthy. After months apart, separately wandering in the wilderness, their love continued to bloom. Although many other versions show Rapunzel’s secret prince being revealed by a clumsy slip of the tongue, this tale has her love revealed by the evidence of the fruit of her womb. While the story is endearing, the scientific errors, such as tears capable of healing blindness and hair that is strong enough to support a full grown man, are misleading our youngest generation.

Jabberwocky

Lewis Carroll
1/5 stars
The beautiful post-apocalyptic illustrations tell a confusing nonsensical story. In laymen’s terms, I don’t know what’s happening and I don’t like it.

Everybody Poos

Taro Gomi
3/5 stars
New age parents everywhere have used this intriguing tale to get children comfortable with their own bodies. The book starts out with a strong but simple pattern of dissecting the way different creatures defecate. Just as the reader begins to fall into this pattern, the novel builds plot by posing essential questions such as “Which end is the snake’s bottom?” and “What does whale poo look like?” The tension builds as the book continues to delve into the subject matter. However, with the unresolved questions still left unanswered, the reader leaves dissatisfied and hoping for a sequel.

Not a Box

Antoinette Portis
7/5 stars
Published in 2006, this novel was awarded with the Theodore Suess Geisel Honor Book for Children’s Literature. It is a simple but touching tale of imagination with stirring undertones of the non-necessity of materialism. The story centers around a rabbit and how his cardboard box, with a touch of ingenuity, is anything but a cardboard box. Also, the bunny is very cute.

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