Rosie and I already seem to share quite a lot in common, and one of them is our love of reading. I thought I'd share both the books I've most enjoyed reading recently, along with Rosie's current favorites (for anyone with a toddler's tastes to consider too).
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult
I felt very white and very privileged reading this book, and it made me uncomfortable - in a good way.
‘Small Great Things’ is the story of an African American maternity nurse who becomes implicated in the death of a baby whose parents are white supremacists. While the premise might sound heavy-handed, you find yourself examining the messy issues of race and prejudice from vastly different perspectives thanks to Jodi Picoult’s cast of complex and sympathetic characters. This book doesn’t offer you easy answers, but it is gripping and makes you dig deep.
Apparently this novel is soon to be turned into a movie, I’m glad I got to read it as Picoult intended before seeing it adapted for the big screen.
Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi by Yotam Ottolenghi
I’ve been devouring cookbooks recently. There’s something so glorious about leafing through a hardcover book of recipes, and happening upon something unexpected and delicious.
This book was given to me for Christmas, and I didn't even initially realize that the recipes were vegetarian - they're all so luxurious. Chef Ottolenghi's dishes are a delight to the senses and have made me excited to explore more Middle Eastern cuisine, and more vegetarian cooking.
“[Plenty] is among the most generous and luxurious non-meat cookbooks ever produced, one that instantly reminds us that you don't need meat to produce over-the-top food.” Mark Bittman, The New York Times
Mr. Tiger Goes Wild by Peter Brown
Rosie was given this book by my brother and brother-in-law, and it's quickly become her top pick. She seems to really resonate with Mr. Tiger's desire to take off his clothes and go wild! She also loves reminding me that Rosie and "ROAR" both start with R.
Most significantly she's learned the meaning of lonely from this book, which is an important concept for young kids to learn early, I think, to help us raise little people with generous, open-minded, and inclusive instincts :-)
Treasury for Children by James Herriot
This book was given to Rosie by my godmother, who also happens to be an early child educator. She told me that she's been reading this book to her students for many years and that it's always been a favorite.
Initially I thought it might be a bit advanced for Rosie because the stories are quite long, but not at all! It really goes to show the power of a good book to elongate a toddler’s attention span. We finished this book over four evenings, with Rosie enjoying a few stories consecutively before she got restless. The author narrates each of the stories based on his own experiences as a veterinarian in the English countryside. The tales are gentle and joyful, and feature adorable farm animals who remind that they should never be underestimated.