The last to leave the shelf

October 19th, 2008

Children’s books that forever changed my life.

I often tell people that every book they read to a child they read to themselves, and therefore not to miss the urgent message that is being delivered into their own hands, from none other than their own lips, and through their own eyes.

Of late, as I’ve recounted, the shelves of my daughter’s room have been cleared of those things that never had much to give or from which every use has already been wrung. A few children’s books remain, all of which my daughter has outgrown, none of which I have or ever will.

This week I’m going to recommend them to you. Some are rather obscure; others, not. Each of them arrived into my hands and heart when I needed them most. Every time I read them is precisely when I need them most. I entrust their magic to you.

Pierre’s Dream
By Jennifer Armstrong
Pictures by Susan Gaber

Pierre is a lazy, foolish man who has no job, no interests and no hobby besides sitting under the olive trees in the afternoon thinking of dinner. That alone recommends him as a hero to me, however in this telling he does far more. He falls asleep, and he begins to dream a dream of fantastic proportions and unbelievable feats.

“Very realistic,” he murmured. But as it was his dream, or so he thought, he had no fear. “For of course, I can wake up at any time,” he reminded himself.

Pierre taught me to stop distinguishing between those things I only dream of doing, and those I do. He teaches me still. The distinction, you see, is only fear.

Pierre’s dreams are very realistic, and so are yours. Wake up and surprise yourself beginning with this book!


  1. thanks for the recommendation. i’m always telling my boys, ” if you can think it or dream it, then it’s real.”
    this will be a nice addition to our collection.

    Comment by ladybug-zen — October 19, 2008 @ 2:46 am

  2. YES! *sigh* I am so glad to have found your blog. 🙂

    Comment by Terri — October 19, 2008 @ 2:57 am

  3. sometimes, bedtime reading is all that soothes me. especially the rhyming stories.

    Comment by Rowena — October 19, 2008 @ 2:12 pm

  4. Seems like this story is the one for me today. Children’s books can be wonderful and I never outgrow them.

    Comment by mapelba — October 19, 2008 @ 3:44 pm

  5. Here’s to children’s books. Roald Dahl was my favourite – I even got a letter from him!

    Comment by Fiona Robyn — October 19, 2008 @ 8:28 pm

  6. The best children’s books stay with you for life. I can’t wait to see all of your recommendations!

    Comment by Mama Zen — October 19, 2008 @ 11:12 pm

  7. I love and collect childrens books for many reasons, including those…thanks for the rec.

    Comment by denise — October 19, 2008 @ 11:57 pm

  8. I still get a lump in my throat when I recite Goodnight Moon and also when I read “Oh the Places You’ll Go” – Dr. Suess.

    MamaZen, you won the giveaway on my blog too… Blue Eyed Yogi has not responded, so email me your address of where I can send it. I’m picking something special for you!

    Comment by Robin — October 20, 2008 @ 11:50 am

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