Out of the Best Books: Summer Reading Fun


All books listed here have been reviewed by the Friend editorial staff and are generally available in libraries/bookstores.

Guess How Much I Love You Every time Little Nutbrown Hare said how much he loved Big Nutbrown Hare, Big Nutbrown Hare said he loved Little Nutbrown Hare that much more. Finally Little Nutbrown Hare said that he loved Big Nutbrown Hare “right up to the moon.” What do you think Big Nutbrown Hare said then? Sam McBratney 3–5 years

Now We Are Six The pictures and poetry are every bit as delightful as in the Pooh books. A sample: “If I were a bear, / And a big bear too, / I shouldn’t much care / If it froze or snew; / I shouldn’t much mind / If it snowed or friz— / I’d be all fur-lined / With a coat like his!” The story-poems include knights, cherry-stones, a sailor, a little black hen, a dragon, cats, a good little girl, and more. A. A. Milne 3–8 years

Gina Gina moved to a new home. There were no girls her age around. But, boy! were there boys! Bernard Waber 4–8 years

Bumpa Rumpus and The Rainy Day The delightful art is as higgledy as the rhymed story is giggle-y! Oh, it starts out quietly: “Plup-Plup from the gutter / Tik-Tik from the glass / Tom-Tom on the roof / And ta-toosh on the grass.” But it soon livens up considerably: “With each whooshing torrent, Ma’s voice rose a note / … And Pa woke to discover the bed was afloat / While the dog sailed away in his baskety boat.” Joanne Reay 4–8 years

The Junior Thunder Lord Yue had been helped at school by the smartest boy there, who said, “Those at the top should help those at the bottom.” Yue remembered that when he was a successful businessman. He helped Bear Face, who appeared ugly and stupid and who was hungry. Then Bear Face helped both Yue and his people. A retelling of a seventeenth-century Chinese fable. Laurence Yep 5–8 years

Good Driving, Amelia Bedelia She’s baaaaack—and as zany as ever. For example, she couldn’t find any crossroads—only nice ones! Herman Parish 6–8 years

Sara’s Secret She had just started at a new school, and no one knew about her brother, who had severe disabilities. When the other kids found out, would they make fun of him—and her—as the kids in her school before had? Was Sara brave enough to tell them, or would she try to keep him her secret? Suzanne Wanous 6–9 years

All-Star Fever Although there are two small technical mistakes (can you spot them?), this is a very good story about Bus Mercer, who wanted to get on the league All-Star team. He disobeyed some of his parents’ rules, flubbed up on the playing field, and was late for the last game played in front of the scouts. Matt Christopher 7–9 years

Elisa in the Middle When she put bubble bath in their tank, Elisa was only trying to help Russell’s fish have a good time. And she was only trying to help Russell catch up on his homework by pouring ketchup on it. Could anything good come from her “helpfulness”? You bet! Johanna Hurwitz 7–10 years

Flick He was trapped in the railroad tracks, two of his legs mangled, when Jack found him. The stationmaster brought a gun to put Flick out of his misery, but the gun didn’t fire. Then Flick’s tail waved slightly. … Lynn Floyd Wright 8–11 years

Nonfiction

I See a Sign Whether or not you read lots of books, you probably read lots of signs! This book is full of ones you’ll recognize—stop signs, shop signs, street signs, warning signs, and many more. Lars Klove 3–7 years

Ruby: The Painting Pachyderm of the Phoenix Zoo She was a scared, lonely, seven-month-old baby when she arrived at the zoo in Phoenix, Arizona. On her way to becoming a star, she taught us humans a lot about elephants! Dick George 6–10 years

Summer Ice: Life along the Antarctic Peninsula Absolutely fascinating facts and photos! Two samples: “The combined weight of all the krill [tiny shrimplike animals] in the Antarctic Ocean is greater than the combined weight of any other animal in the entire world.” “The baleen whales here in the Antarctic Ocean eat an estimated 43 million tons of krill in a year. But crabeater seals eat even more—63 million tons.” Bruce McMillan 7–10 years

The Peanut Butter Cookbook for Kids If you think you’ve heard of every way to eat peanut butter, think again! Besides all sorts of goodies, there are recipes for dips, salads, party favors, main dishes, and more—like helpful tips and interesting facts and even a short, fascinating history of peanut butter. Judy Ralph and Ray Gompf 8 years and up

I Can Make Games; I Can Make Gifts Colorful, fairly easy to make (sometimes adult help may be needed by younger children), and fun! A few of the games: Squishers, Monkey Race, Mini Golf, Pin Ball Bowl. A few of the gifts: Growing Gift, Swing-a-Rattle, Message Man, Winning Trophy. Mary Wallace all ages