Stay: A Girl, a Dog, a Bucket List by Kate Klise: Eli the dog has been with Astrid the girl since her parents brought her home from the hospital. Astrid is getting older, and so is Eli. Knowing that Eli won’t be with her forever, Astrid wants to create happy and fun memories with him, so she creates a bucket list of activities for the two to experience together.
I straight up ugly cried through this one, but even if stories about dogs and their stupid mortality weren’t my emotional kryptonite, this would have been a standout. Beautifully illustrated (by Klise’s sister), with simple, sweet text, the book allows readers to fully experience the very real relationship between the book’s two main characters. Hands down one of my favorite picture books of the year.
You Must Bring a Hat by Simon Philip: The one rule for attending the party of the year is that attendees must bring a hat. But what if you don’t have a hat? Will a monkey wearing a hat suffice?
Cute, silly, and full of vivid pictures, this one will be a hit with kids who like their stories repetitive but very funny. I really liked this one and thought it might work for a storytime in the future.
Not a lot of stand-outs this month, but I didn’t seek them out, either. I expect I’ll be reading a lot of picture books over the next two months as “best of” lists start appearing.