Feature Articles: Bookworm

Invite a little magic into your customers’ lives by showing them an intriguing bit of wall décor that comes with a book to help them welcome a fairy, elf or gnome into their homes. Fantasy takes us where we might not otherwise go. Kids love fantasy and will thrill to the opportunity when they get A Little Lair. Each of these “lairs” is a whimsical door that is accompanied by a read-along page book that explores the many ways to make magic happen. Mac, an elf, introduces himself and guides kids and their families on the journey, explaining how, by placing a Lair on the wall, the little people can enter, making good dreams happen and diminishing night terrors.

Everyone loves the tooth fairy! Losing those first few baby teeth is a rite of passage to kids, another milestone to growing up. Who hasn’t seen the unmistakable grin of a kid showing off his loose tooth, and later a toothless smile? Parents have celebrated this event with tales of the Tooth Fairy for generations. This whimsical story, The Tale of the Tooth Fairy, gives kids a glimpse into the magical world of fairies and the endearing story of how the Tooth Fairy got her job. Not only is the story enchanting, but the product makes a perfect gift.

Andrea Sherr finds being a mother of three kids under age 10 means she’s outsmarted on a daily basis — a relatable feeling for any parent left speechless at what comes out of the mouths of babes. Last year, Sherr began compiling “kiddisms” from her own children and others on her website www.heardontheplayground.com. At first, it was simply a labor of love, with Sherr working late into the night reading and laughing. Other than selling some T-shirts with the quotes, she didn’t have a long-term revenue strategy. Then she decided to turn it into a book called Heard on the Playground – Funny Things Kids Say.

The Ice Cream Hotel by Jack Johnston reminds us of the childhood battle cry, “We all scream for ice cream!” And your customers will think it’s a scream when they get a look at this book that’s long on imagination with a yummy story line that will appeal to the younger crowd. The thirty-two pages within a hard cover offer witty, colorful illustrations on every page and the plot is packed with fun and flavor. Kids love the idea of paddling in the hot fudge pool, meeting new friends at the shake shack, and dropping in on the best ice cream party ever.

Introduce customers to Ben KaChoo, Harry Hiccers and Norman PhartEphant and watch their eyes light up! Fierce Fun plush toys and the accompanying Zoo Tales books use humor to offer gentle lessons about typical kid concerns like adjusting to a new school, coping with allergies, making friends and yes, what to say when a burp or other unplanned noise occurs. The toys are soft and squeezable, make up to six different sounds, and are made of all new, safe materials.

Many people – and not just old curmudgeons – agree that there’s a crisis of manners among today’s youth. To remedy the problem, there’s been an increase of youth-oriented manners handbooks over the last ten years. To stand out in the field of etiquette books for kids, the author needs to offer something unique and effective. Soup Should Be Seen, Not Heard is Beth Brainard’s humorous, informative effort at making etiquette fun and accessible for children.

Little Orphan Annie reminded us that we’re never fully dressed without a smile. What a great message for children to remember. A smile goes a long way and is quite contagious. Gloominess can be contagious too! It’s no fun to be around someone who is grumpy. The Pout-Pout Fish Book & CD Set by Deborah Diesen is a delightful children’s story about a gloomy pout-pout fish and his cheerful ocean friends who try their hardest to turn his frown upside down. Dan Hanna’s vivid illustrations of the frowning fish and his well-meaning friends give life to this inspiring story.

“A” is for alphabet, “B” is for book and “F” is for the family owned company that publishes books in the AlphabetownUSA series where letters have distinctive personalities. The books, which incorporate bright, engaging illustrations, introduce language skills to young children who giggle over the adventures of Nancy, a green “N,” Frank, a bright red “F” and slate blue “Z” for Ziggy. With lots of help from their four children, Ryan and Nicole Mayer of Rolesville, NC, created the AlphabetownUSA series, illustrated by artist Russ Simmons.

Reading books together is a great way for parents and children to talk about important issues. Author Sabrina Panfilo, a graduate of NYU and an elementary school teacher, has molded her professional expertise in journalism, education, and psychology into one passion — creating a literary world for children that reminds each and every one of us that we are indeed unique and beautiful –– and, undoubtedly, loved. Sabrina’s two new books from Vantage Press, Cosmo’s Crave and Guppy’s Gall and Tomey and the Caterpillar are inspiring books that convey these essential messages.