Sunday, May 4, 2014

Wuthering Heights: A Weather Primer by Jennifer Adams

Wuthering Heights: A Weather Primer by Jennifer Adams, illustrated by Alison Oliver

Rating: 5 stars

Of the six board books I've borrowed from a librarian-friend in this clever BabyLit series, this one is my favorite.  As "fashionable ways to introduce your toddler to the world of classic literature," the board books are actually books on colors, counting, opposites, animals…and like this Wuthering Heights board book, weather.

The illustrations all have the same backdrop of Mr. Heathcliff's castle-like home, Wuthering Heights, and the same gnarled tree and same climb-up-me hill.  Yet each one, of course, is used to show that specific type of weather, so the sky above is either bright or stormy, full of clouds or lightning bolts.  The individuals in the picture are either basking in or hiding from what's happening above them.

And I think it's so neat.  With each type of weather, there is a sentence from the book that describes that type of weather. Not only does this provide a more sophisticated text than toddlers are used to these days, it gives us parents a nice change of pace with classic, poetic, descriptive sentences from another era, and often from our own bookshelf.  For example:

"The first feathery flakes of a snow shower."
BREEZY "The weather was sweet and warm."
SUNNY  "The place was filled with sunshine."
CLOUDY "Bright white clouds flitting rapidly above."
STILL "The mild glory of a rising moon."

I was talking about these books with someone recently and I said that I thought one drawback to them was that they seemed easy to buy for little girls, but…not so little boys.  I have Anna Karenina: A Fashions Primer in mind, mostly…  Then I looked up what other books are available and now I'm currently sitting on my hands trying not to order them to have them:

Sherlock Holmes: A Sounds Primer
Dracula: A Counting Primer
Jabberwocky: A Nonsense Primer
The Jungle Book: An Animals Primer
Huckleberry Finn: A Camping Primer

As you read these books to your little ones, it's a nice reminder that there are more things to read than board books--but that's where this love of reading all starts: board books.

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