I decided to start this feature last week, as a means of sharing pictures of my baby boy, as well as the picture books that we've been reading together.
This week's selection is a book that I downloaded from Netgalley, Scaredy Squirrel Goes Camping. I read the first Scaredy Squirrel book when I was taking a children's services course as part of my Library & Information Technology program, and I instantly fell in love. The author, Mélanie Watts, gives Scaredy such a uniquely memorable voice. In the first installment of the series, Scaredy is, just like his name, afraid to leave his tree. In the subsequent books, Scaredy goes to the beach, has a party and makes a new friend.
The first reason why I love these books so much can be summed up in one simple description, although you really need to see the books in person in order to fully appreciate just how deliciously humourous they really are. Scaredy likes to make lists, and they are absolutely hilarious! Scaredy wants to go camping, but he's afraid of a few critters that may make this experience unpleasant, including mosquitoes, the Three Bears, penguins and zippers. Instead, he decides to watch a camping show on TV, but needs to find a way to plug in his television. Enter the second reason why this series is great: Scaredy makes great maps of how he's going to accomplish his task, as well as a list of things that he'll need in order to survive the journey. This list includes popsicles to distract the penguins and instant oatmeal for the Three Bears.
Scaredy is a likeable character with a unique voice, comparable to Mo Willems' Pigeon. It's always refreshing to read a picture book that makes an adult laugh, and Scaredy Squirrel definitely falls into this category. Plus, Mélanie is a Canadian writer who illustrates her own books! I highly recommend checking out this entire series if you like a fun, colourful picture book with a great story.