There are some things unexplainable (and very explainable) about Maine that makes it one of the best places in the world. While I cannot get into that right now (but I need to write about that soon) I want to share a list of children’s books that you want to order now to have in time for Christmas. These books are special in their own right and will make a perfect gift for anyone in your family, especially the blessing of a child. Authors of Maine represent this amazing place so well that is hard not to share them all. So many books old and new stuck out to me and I just wanted to write about them all. I stuck with newer books by Maine authors and hopefully books that you may not have heard of so you can discover something new. Maine is strong, kind, and full of the most helpful and friendliest people I have ever met. Life in Maine teaches lost values that I don’t always see around the rest of the country. The creativity by authors in Maine is just incomparable to other children’s books out there.
Here is a list of 10 books by Maine authors for children that you will want to order now and have under the Christmas tree to brighten up that wonderful child in your life.
1. Why the Moon Tumbled Out of the Sky and Other Poems
R. James Sands and Ronan J. Sands
This is a book of poems written by a father while his son did the illustrations. If that does not melt your heart enough then you need to read these poems. My daughter laughs all the time when the snowman loses his boot! These funny poems go through all 4 seasons and really give you a feel for the creativity and humor that Maine produces. These poems are wonderfully written and the pictures fit the poems so well. You will read Why the Moon Tumbled Out of the Sky over and over again with laughter, smiles, and many touching moments.
My kids love this book but don’t be under the impression that it is about a doggie who tries to be a loon, which is what my oldest child thought at first. This is a touching tale about Rollie who lives on Thomas Pond in Maine. Rollie listens and looks for the loons on the pond and gets beyond excited every summer when the loons come back. Does Rollie think he is part loon too? Only Rollie knows but your children will enjoy this story about Rollie and his loving Maine family. This story really is a must for all dog-owning families or families who want to know what it is really like growing up in Maine. Rollie is everyone’s favorite Maine dog and we all love and relate to him.
This book is really special to us because we have grandparents who do not live with us in Maine. Ladybug Bear is a special bear who was bought outside of Maine but had to go through the long journey from another US state to Maine in a box. Kids love getting mail and learning about mail and this book will entertain both those interests as you travel with Ladybug Bear to her new home in Maine as a gift to a special family member. My kids really liked this book because it reminds them of sending special packages to our family that lives out of state. The pictures by Maine illustrator Thomas Block are just breathtaking and so full of detail.
I cannot say enough about the books by Toni Buzzeo and since I cannot choose just one I am going with the ones I have read and start with my most FAVORITE Buzzeo book.
I LOVE One Cool Friend and I ask to read it more than my kids, who also love the book. You know that book your kids bring to you and you just roll your eyes and think (or say) “again?” this is how I first was when we discovered One Cool Friend because all I wanted to do was read it! This book is about a boy named Elliot who is a very proper young man, he even wears a suit! He always uses his manners, is very smart, and does the right thing. He goes to the aquarium with his dad and asks to buy a penguin and dad says yes. The rest of this wonderful book is about how Elliot takes care of his penguin and learns about him. He never hides his penguin which makes this book even funnier. Let the giggles between you and your child commence with this funny story about a boy and his penguin.
No T.Rex in the Library is a book that reminds me of all my kids, especially my oldest son who has the craziest imagination and I love it. A little girl and her mama are at the library and the child gets in a little trouble and gets put in a timeout. When that timeout starts though so doesn’t a loose dinosaur in the library! I love this book because it encourages children to go to the library and let their imaginations run wild. It encourages children to turn any situation, even a timeout, into an adventure. My kids love this book and think it is so fun. They are waiting every day for a dino to get loose in their library!
Will my kids ever stop growing up? It doesn’t seem like they will stop growing up and Stay Close to Mama is a book that reminds me of that. This book is definitely true for the term of ‘bedtime story’ and is such a gentle and calm story. The little giraffe is so curious and wants to explore but mama needs the little child to stay close and safe, does that story remind you of anyone? A tale as old and sweet as time.
Do you have a budding doctor in your life? What about a terror who may even destroy something as special as books? Well, Penelope Popper will enrich both questions. I have both in my life and both love this story. Learn how to fix books very carefully with the help of Penelope and her librarian guide. Learn why we need to take care of books. When you hit the part of learning not to fold the top pages of a book to see where you leave off be prepared for your child to call you out, I was called out! This is a gentle and important story about responsibility, caring about things, and dreams. The pictures and story will keep any child engaged.
This book is just hilarious. Toddie is a big baby who was born into this regular Maine family, who of course has an Uncle Bert. This book is so funny! This book does the classic Maine thing of over exaggerating just a bit, including having a big baby, or in this case a wicked big toddlah. You and your kids will laugh endlessly. Toddie is just a normal growing Maine boy who just happens to be huge! He does normal things, like plays with boats, except they are real boats. This Wicked Big Toddlah tale is very funny and your family will have a lot of fun reading this over and over. Learn a Maine-ah accent while you’re at it and you will have a ball.
6. Halfway Wild
Halfway Wild is a great story. Your children will instantly connect inside this book and really have the opportunity to become a part of it. This story connects emotions with animals and is so beautifully written. This is a wonderful book that will enrich the imagination and help kids connect and acknowledge their emotions.
7. A Blanding’s Turtle Story
This is a wonderful educational book that is not the least bit ‘boring’. The detailed pictures are just a work of art in themselves. Your children will travel with a Blanding Turtle to find food, shelter, and a place to lay her eggs. You will also learn important lessons like leaving the turtle be when you see her in the wild. It is never too early to learn about real animal facts and how to care and appreciate the animals on our land. That goes especially true for the endangered Blanding Turtle. Best of all this book comes in a board book, but the story and pictures are so well written that this is a wonderful picture book for any age.
8. June the Loon: The Story of a Maine Loon Chick
Roger L. Stevens Jr
I love all the books by the author Roger L. Stevens Jr and so do my children, especially my oldest. These books are by the author and photographer Roger L. Stevens Jr who does the photography for all of his books. I cannot imagine the time it takes to get the accurate footage of the pictures he takes, it is just absolutely breathtaking. Out of all the books Stevens Jr has written I took the time to figure out which one was the favorite among all 5 of us. I decided since we read them all June the Loon is the most loved. June is a Maine loon chick. In this book, you will read the story of how June grows from egg to an adult and what her life will become. The pictures are clear and beautiful-a work of art in themselves. The story of June is very informative but not ‘boring’ and very engaging. The story is very well written and goes great with Stevens’s pictures. This will be a treasured book in your collection and takes ‘picture book’ to a whole new level.
CALLING ALL HOMESCHOOLING PARENTS! Azalea kicks butt and if you homeschool you need this book now! This book is a chapter book and as a homeschooling mother, I deem necessary for your homeschooling family and for anyone in your life who is old enough to read, maybe even a few adults in your life. Seriously though, if you can get this book for any kid or teen in your life you will be thankful. Azalea in a young girl who moves to Portland with her family and her dad becomes a tour guide-which leads to some funny things considering they just moved to Maine. Her mother meets people who unschool and she decides to try it with Azalea and her siblings. This book teaches what homeschooling and unschooling are really about. The story teaches the positives of these types of education but it will also make your homeschooled child see that they are not alone and there are other homeschooled kids and teens. I also say that you need to buy this book for those who are old enough for it because it spreads a positive message of always learning what you want to know, staying engaged in life and in your own education, and it shows that others homeschool and it is not strange. This book normalizes homeschooling, even better it normalizes unschooling.
Or are there? This is a funny book about a boy who is visiting a Maine island with his dad and swears he sees a moose! He couldn’t of though because dad says that no moose live on this Maine island. All kids will have fun with this story and you all will be laughing together. The moose spends the whole story playing a hide and seek type game with the young boy while the boy tries to let dad know a moose is really there. Does dad ever see the moose? The story is funny, the pictures are wonderful and witty, the portrayal of a Maine island is accurate, and you will be giggling with your kiddos.
I was not asked to review any of these books. I have read 100% of these books with my five children and enjoy them all. I choose them all from memory and these were ones that stuck out to my family and I.