I think it is safe to say that all us Babyccino ladies have a crush (purely in the children’s-literature sense of the word) on Dallas Clayton. His books; An Awesome Book and An Awesome Book of Thanks are … well … awesome. Not only are they big on the ideas front but they are so beautifully crafted. In fact they are not just children’s books, they are lessons in life. I want my kids to think and dream in Dallas Clayton images. They are imagination on a hugely ambitous, creative, beautiful level. If you don’t own them already, check them out and buy them here. We are so pleased that Dallas took some time out to let us know his top ten kids books …
Hmmmmm… I hesitate to put these in order or consider this a definitive list but here goes:
Horton Hears A Who! – Dr. Seuss
So perfect. I’ve written at least three books in my head only to discover they were just remakes of this exact concept. I could put 9 other Seuss books on this list and still not feel like I was doing him justice.
The Missing Piece – Shel Silverstein
I wish I could do so much with so little. It’s a story about a circle!! And he doesn’t even bother to connect the lines on the circle. What a monster. Shel Silverstein destroys.
The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
Have you ever met anyone who doesn’t like this book?
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
Roald Dahl is so smashing I can’t really pick one favorite over another but this book and its bratty kid archetypes serve as a primer for just about anyone looking to lift the standards of future generations.
Cars and Trucks and Things that Go – Richard Scarry
Richard Scarry is so good at drawing. I’m surprised you don’t see more people with tattoos of his stuff. Hide Goldbug somewhere on your body, that sort of thing… Top of the charts for sure.
Love You Forever – Robert Munsch / Sheila McGraw
Holy crap, how are you supposed to read this thing without crying. It’s like the saddest/happiest book ever written. Kills me every single time.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs – Judi & Ron Barrett
Okay, so pretend the movie version never existed, because it didn’t…This book is so ripping man, the artwork is just astounding. I want Ron Barrett to paint my bedroom like this, or at least make wallpaper for it.
Sideways Stories from Wayside School – Louis Sachar
So weird, so good. Definitely underrated — a huge part of my youth reading.
Sylvester and the Magic Pebble – William Steig
Reading Steig is like reading the Bukowski of kids books. His stories don’t really try to teach you anything about truth or justice, they just tell you this really strange story, but it’s so succinct and deliberate that you just feel like you are living it with him. Great stuff.
Where The Wild Things Are – Maurice Sendak
Duh. I mean, duh.
To read other Top Ten book lists, click here.
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Hey Dallas, thanks so much for your great list! Very inspirational!! x
I LOVE this list. And ‘Love You Forever’ is one of my family’s all-time favourite books. I have seen my grandfather, grandma, aunts, mom, etc. cry over this book. I still cry every single time I read that book to my kids!
And we also love ‘Sylvester and the Magic Pebble’ and all of William Steig’s books!