To continue in the popular vein of summer reading choices (and to celebrate the 1-year anniversary of my blog, which is right around the corner), I thought I'd make some suggestions for the younger crowd . . . or the young at heart!
To read with your daughter(s): The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall (great book about SUMMER!). It's a lovely tale of 4 sisters and their father and summer adventure that will make you feel like a child again! And if your daughter has not read The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes, you need to make it a rite of passage in your home! I've heard boys can be affected by it as well . . . but the message rings clear and true with girls.
To read with your son(s): Alabama Moon by Watt Key (warning: light swearing in this book, and I am not QUITE done with it. . . but it's really good!). Other good options for boys (some of these I've gotten from Josh, but tried and true when read to real live boys) -- Skinnybones by Barbara Park (VERY funny story of a kid who is terrible at sports, but has a loud mouth), The Twits by Roald Dahl (also The Witches).
To read with the whole fam: The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart, The Mistmantle Chronicles by M.I. McAllister, Gone-Away Lake by Elizabeth Enright (and anything else by her -- Return to Gone-Away Lake, The Saturdays, The Four Story Mistake, Then There Were 5, and Spiderweb for Two.)
To read with the little ones: God Knows My Name, I Love My Bible and I Can Talk to God by Debby Anderson. Cannot say enough about these -- they call for a whole post themselves! They're my newly-discovered favorite Christian picture books for kids. I know you can get them at LifeWay, or order them from Julie! They are also illustrated by Debby Anderson, who illustrated Noel Piper's Most of All, Jesus Loves You. I admire Debby's skill in drawing simply adorable children of all colors loving their Bibles and learning about God. Each page makes specific Biblical statements about God, which are supported in fine print by Bible references -- WOW! As for a good new non-Christian picture book, I love Houndsley and Catina by James Howe, it won the 2007 Read-Aloud award.
Happy reading! Spread out a blanket under a tree, grab your water bottles and some good snacks to munch on, and create a summer tradition (whether you are reading with the kids or alone)!