... for my favorite author and good friend Laurie Hornik.
(Jacket illustrations copyright Debbie Tilley 2001 and 2004)
Laurie and Papa Squid played together as kids because their moms were best friends. When our kids were born, they too, played together because their Grandmothers took care of them and, were still best friends. Laurie and Mike drifted apart over the years but it took just one afternoon with Laurie and family to cement our friendship. [This kind of explains how Squidette and I wound up in the woods of Rockland County to experience the most amazing leaf fall this weekend. The memory of my daughter standing in the middle of a clearing with her arms outstretched as leaves fell all about ... well that's why we wrote a poem.]
Laurie's books are geared toward a third grade audience but are fun for all. Zoo School actually speaks to anyone in education and had me rolling with laughter over things that the kids found interesting but not fall-on-the-floor funny. (They found other things extremely funny.) I have since given it as gifts to adult friends. (We will not speak of the times I have gone in to the Big Box Bookstore and bought 3 copies at a shot of one or the other book for birthday presents. I even thought of giving them to Laurie's son one year as a gag gift.)
Anyhow, if you are looking for a good gift for the 7-10 year old set, you can't go wrong with these books. (Unless, of course, they have them already.) If you want a good read for yourself, hey, they work for that too.
(I am not linking to an on-line bookseller because I refuse to publicly support either of the two biggies and am actually rather miffed at both of them.)