tiny reads

Writer and Creative Director. Part-nerd/part-hipster mom. Curator of cool things for kids. Blogging mostly about books with lots of pictures.

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So, it was back-to-school in San Francisco last week, but if you’re living in a more normal part of the world, it’s still high-summer. There’s still time to fit in a quick getaway before the leaves start to change and you have to dig out your sweaters. Before you hop on the plane, check theydrawandtravel. Cute and very personal maps from all kinds of illustrators. Some are kid-centric, some are, ummmm, more adult-centric. Hey, there’s something for everyone! Here are two — one for my hometown (shout-out to the crazy-creepy-wonderful Mutter Museum!) and one for my current town. Represent.

Ahh, the sweet smell of paper

So, if you have any interest in books, you’ve probably heard of City Lights Bookstore here in San Francisco.

It’s a serious institution. I have to admit, I’m the world’s hugest fan of amazon.com, but there is no dreamier way to spend an hour or two than browsing the shelves of a great bookstore. And by “great,” I mean one that is staffed by people who live and breathe books, love talking about books, and who have organized the place in a way that seems to lead you to all kinds of amazing finds. Let’s just say it’s easy to drop a couple Benjamins in a place like that. 

I’ve been to City Lights plenty of times, but it was always in my pre-kid days so I never knew about their trim but well-stocked kid’s section. Sadly, today I only had a few minutes to browse, but here are a few gems that caught my eye.

I looooooove They Might Be Giants. If this was a music-for-kids blog, I’d be writing about them all the time. Brilliant! If you haven’t checked out Here Comes Science, you really must. The songs are just as catchy as tunes by Katy Perry or the Biebs and — bonus! — the lyrics don’t require uncomfortable birds-and-bees conversations the way Teenage Dream or Baby do. Here Comes Science also comes with a DVD of videos of each song, and they’re funny and clever and well-designed, kind of a Sesame Street vibe. Love. Anyway, I haven’t read Bed Bed Bed yet, but if it’s up to the usual TMBG standards, it’ll be superfun. Available here.

Here’s what is apparently a San Francisco classic that (gasp!) I’ve never heard of before. Looking forward to seeing pix of a midcentury version of the city. It even won a Caldecott medal when it was first published back in 1957. Available here.  

About the meaning of friendship and home, this is one of those books where the illustrations alone can bring a tear to your eye. >Sniff!< Available here.

This one really knocked my socks off. I dunno, I’m a sucker for quirky-smart illustrations and this has them in spades. Just check out that cyclist’s rubber-band physique! I even love how the author’s name is integrated into the cover design. It’s a book for slightly younger kids; then again, I’m not so young and I want a copy of my own. Hands off! Available here.

Very sweet retro-ish print by Matte Stephens. My kid would love to see this hanging on the wall of his room. Ummm, so would I. 

nevver:

Matte Stephens

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