Good Driving, Amelia Bedelia
by Herman Parish. Illustrated by Lynn Sweat. (Greenwillow, 1995. ISBN 9780688133580. Order Info.) Easy Reader. 40 pages. Grades 1-3.
It's time for a laugh and we'll get a good one in this book. I never thought we'd see Amelia Bedelia again after the tragic death of Peggy Parish, but she's back. Herman Parish, a nephew of Peggy's, has taken up the pen and Lynn Sweat has illustrated it as usual in Good Driving, Amelia Bedelia. The change of authors is barely perceptible and the humor bubbles as strongly as ever when Amelia takes to the road. It might be fun to have the kids speculate first on the sort of misunderstandings Amelia will have with forks in the road and spare tires, not to mention what she'll find in the scenery of a country road. Welcome back, Amelia, we've missed you.
Ling and Ting: Not Exactly the Same! by Grace Lin. (2010, Little, Brown. ISBN 9780316024525. Order Info.) Easy Reader. 48 pages. Gr PreK-3.
Here's another charming Easy Reader. Ling and Ting are Chinese American twins, but they are not exactly the same. For one thing there is the jagged cut in Ling's haircut due to a sneeze while her bangs were being trimmed. Then, of course, there are the differences in their personalities and behavior. This beautifully done Easy Reader explores the similarities and differences while affirming their affection for each other. Small vignettes break the book up into accessible chunks each with a dose of gentle humor at the end. Grace Lin won a 2011 Giesel Honor Book award for this strong entry in the beginning reader genre.
Amelia Bedelia's Family Album by Peggy Parish. Illustrated by Lynn Sweat. (2003, Greenwillow. ISBN 9780060511166. Order Info.) Picture Book. 48 pages. Gr K-3.
This is as full of word play as any of the Amelia Bedelia books but, with the theme of occupations for her relatives, the jokes seem even stronger than usual. As on many family trees, there are a few lemons on Amelia Bedelia's. Her Cousin Chester is a printer. They never could teach him how to write. Read More.
Mercy Watson Thinks Like a Pig by Kate DiCamillo. Illustrated by Chris Van Dusen. (2008, Candlewick. ISBN 9780763632656. Order Info.) Easy Reader. 70 pages. Gr K-4.
Here's another humorous easy reader. The text is rich with judiciously sprinkled juicy words like "unmentionable" and "eclaires" and "gracious". In this installment Mercy's neighbors--the elderly women, named Eugenia and Baby, have decided to beautify their yard by planting pansies all around, which Mercy finds delicious. Read More.