So what if there are still the odd piles of snow on the ground? HuffPost blogger Devon Corneal is convinced spring is just around the corner, and is recommending books this month that remind her of all the things spring has to offer -- from baby ducks and geese, rabbits, getting up early, being outside, rain, and, well, a random blue monster. Because, really, if we can believe that groundhogs can predict the future and bunnies bring us candy, a talking blue monster is perfectly normal.
'Ribbit' By Rodrigo Folgueira
If you’re a frog, there’s nothing quite so disconcerting as finding a pink pig sitting on a rock in the middle of your pond. Unless the pig is also saying “<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Ribbit-Rodrigo-Folgueira/dp/0307981460/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360293079&sr=1-3&keywords=ribbit+books">Ribbit</a>!” Which is precisely where this lovely book about friendship starts. The frogs are perplexed; their daily routine upended. What can it mean? Why is the pig there? “Goodness!” they say, “Why is there a pig in our pond?” There’s a very simple answer, of course, but it takes a wise old beetle to help the frogs find it.
'Lucky Ducklings' By Eva Moore
I confess, I almost missed “<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Lucky-Ducklings-Eva-Moore/dp/0439448611/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1362358139&sr=1-1&keywords=lucky+ducklings+eva+moore">Lucky Ducklings</a>” and I’m glad I didn’t. At first glance, its illustrations seemed old fashioned and I worried I was in for a treacly story about the rescue of some unfortunate waterfowl. But this picture book marries simple, beautiful and traditional illustrations with a crisp modern sensibility -- telling the true story of how a small New York town saved a family of ducklings (including my favorite, “Little Joe”) from a fall down a sewer grate. It’s a book that I would have loved 40 years ago, but can still love today.
'Snippet the Early Riser' By Bethanie Deeney Murguia
This book is for all parents who find themselves woken up at 6 a.m. by an energetic child who really ought to be asleep. If you haven’t been able to sleep in since you had children, you’ll appreciate the story of a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Snippet-Early-Riser-Bethanie-Murguia/dp/158246460X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360293731&sr=1-1&keywords=snippet+the+early+riser">small snail with a patchwork shell</a> who just can’t stay in bed.
'Everyone Can Learn to Ride a Bicycle' By Chris Raschler
Learning to ride a bike is a rite of passage for most kids. It’s scary and liberating and incredibly fun. Chris Raschka breaks it all down with ink and watercolor illustrations and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Everyone-Can-Learn-Ride-Bicycle/dp/0375870075/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360294018&sr=1-1-fkmr0&keywords=everyone+can+lean+to+ride+a+bicycle">a simple story</a> about a father teaching his daughter to ride her first bike. Complete with spills (and a helmet!), this is a lovely way to walk your soon-to-be speed demon through the path to two-wheeled freedom.
'Stuck With the Blooz' By Caron Levis
You know when you wake up and you have that horrible feeling that the day isn’t going to go your way. When you’re feeling a bit “off” and unsettled and, well, blue? Caron Levis and illustrator Jon Davis have captured that feeling perfectly and giving it a name “the Blooz.” <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Stuck-Blooz-Caron-Levis/dp/0547745605/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360295564&sr=1-1&keywords=stuck+with+the+blooz">The Blooz</a> is “very big and very wet and very blue” and arrives when he is not invited. But as this story shoes, with a little patience, you can get rid of even the most stubborn Blooz.
'Gideon & Otto' By Olivier Dunrea
I am enchanted by Olivier Dunrea’s gosling books. Every one is a perfect story in and of itself with captivating illustrations that capture the innocence and charm of childhood (albeit through the lives of geese) with a sense of whimsy and fun. The latest in the set is the story of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Gideon-Gossie-Friends-Olivier-Dunrea/dp/0547983980/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360294287&sr=1-2&keywords=Gideon+and+otto">Gideon the gosling and his best friend Otto</a>, who just happens to be a stuffed octopus. Which somehow makes all the sense in the world.
'Jasper & Joop' By Olivier Dunrea
And if you were charmed by Gideon, you’ll fall in love with <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Jasper-Gossie-Friends-Olivier-Dunrea/dp/054786762X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360294514&sr=1-1&keywords=Jasper+and+joop">Jasper & Joop</a> -- the Oscar and Felix of the preschool crowd. Two little goslings with decidedly different ideas about proper behavior both end up agreeing on one thing -- when faced with a hive of angry bees -- RUN!
'The Black Rabbit' By Philippa Leathers
Spring deserves a good rabbit story and since my son is far to young for “Watership Down,” every year I try to find one that we can read together. This year, it’s “<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Rabbit-Junior-Library-Selection-Candlewick/dp/076365714X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360295069&sr=1-1&keywords=The+black+rabbit">The Black Rabbit</a>.” When rabbit mistakes his shadow for a menacing black rabbit, it takes an encounter with a far more dangerous wolf to make him appreciate his constant companion.
'That is Not a Good Idea!' By Mo Willems
Anyone who knows me knows: 1) I love Mo Willems, and 2) I love fractured fairy tales. “<a href="http://www.amazon.com/That-Not-Good-Idea-Willems/dp/0062203096/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1362357685&sr=1-1&keywords=that+is+not+a+good+idea">That is Not a Good Idea!</a>” brings together my two favorite things in a charming picture book that blends the visual impact of old silent films with modern day snark and a surprise ending.
More Great Reads
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/12/january-2013-childrens-books_n_2463557.html#slide=1952272">This Month's Children's And Young Adult Book Recommendations: January 2013 </a> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/03/february-2013-childrens-books-_n_2593679.html">This Month's Children's And Young Adult Book Recommendations: February 2013 </a> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/julie-handler/50-inspiring-childrens-books-with-positive-message_b_1557914.html">50 Inspiring Children's Books with a Positive Message</a> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/devon-corneal/books-for-kids-who-dont-fit-in_b_1313507.html">Best Books For Kids Who Don't Quite Fit In</a>