The Treehouse - a wordless picture book

Photos and text by Gabrielle.

I think you’ll love this month’s round up of books! There are knock out illustrations, really good stories, and a non-fiction selection as well. First up, let’s talk about The Tree House, by Marije and Ronald Tolman. This is a wordless book — which means the images have to work even harder. But they totally do!

The Treehouse — a wordless picture bookThe Treehouse — a wordless picture book

A polar bear rides a whale to a tree that’s growing out of the water. How’s that for a magical opener? And it just gets more fabulous from there. Polar Bear isn’t alone for long — as the water recedes, more and more animals join him. Some by land, some by air. Your kids will want to study every image.

Rosie Revere, Engineer

Remember Iggy Peck, Architect? Well, today I’m happy to introduce you to Rosie Revere, Engineer. It’s written by Andrea Beaty, with gloriously detailed illustrations by David Roberts. Jessie Arora, the founder of Embark Labs, sent me this book to welcome our family to the Bay Area. Such a sweet gift!

Rosie Revere, EngineerRosie Revere, Engineer

Though Rosie may seem a bit quiet during the day, her nights are filled with visions of inventions. Not every invention is a hit, and Rosie is tempted to give up her dream of becoming an engineer. But maybe her invention “flops” aren’t as bad as they seem.  The whole book is written in memorable rhyme, and the message of the book is so encouraging, it appeals to kids and adults alike.

The Great Brain

Next up is The Great Brain, written by John D. Fitzgerald. This is a chapter book, not a picture book (though it happens to feature some memorable illustrations by the legendary Mercer Mayer).

The Great Brain

We’ve been reading this book as a family this summer and it’s been a huge hit. Ben Blair and I read this as kids and we both remember it fondly, but I swear, it’s even more fun to read as an adult — because as a kid, I think I missed a decent chunk of the humor. I know I don’t typically feature chapter books, but if you’re looking for something fun to read as a family, this gets a big thumbs up. I should note: this is actually a series, so if you like the first, you can find the rest here.

Unusual Creatures. A witty book about real-live animals you've probably never heard of.

And then we have Unusual Creatures, written by Michael Hearst, with illustrations by Arjen Noordeman.

Unusual Creatures. A witty book about real-live animals you've probably never heard of.Unusual Creatures. A witty book about real-live animals you've probably never heard of.

My son Oscar basically loves any non-fiction book about animals, and this book is certainly on his approved list. He keeps it by his bed and references it often. The book features facts and descriptions of real live creatures most people haven’t heard of (raising my hand here), and the whole thing is written with a lot of wit, so it ends up being informational plus fun.

Your turn! What are your kids reading these days? Are there any books on your shopping list or library list that you’d like to share?