Children's Books I hate! - Page 8 - Mothering Forums

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#211 of 236 Old 02-28-2007, 02:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by SwissMama View Post
You forgot the part about the monkey SMOKING - having a pipe before he goes to bed.
Oh ya, I forgot about that part!! I think it's just from a different era when smoking was much more ok. It's just kind of wierd for a monkey, but C.G. does all sorts of stuff that's wierd for a monkey!! I can't figure out why he needs pyjamas when he runs around all day with nothing on.

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#212 of 236 Old 02-28-2007, 03:11 PM - Thread Starter
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A lot of books that people are mentioning, I agree with the interpretations you're giving (e.g. Ping, Bedtime for Frances, Rainbow Fish, The Giving Tree, Curious George etc . . . ) but they're part of the reason why we love the bookss they're great jumping off points for conversations in which we reinforce our family values.
I agree with the stories being great jumping-off points for conversations, as long as your kid is old enough to have those conversations, and you want to have those particular discussions (and have time and energy for it). My DD is 2 1/2 and not ready for some of it, so we just avoid the books (for now).

I thought of another one: Jack and the beanstalk. The story irks me. First of all we're supposed to feel bad for Jack who made a bad decision about the beans. I agree, as a mom, I would be mad. Perhaps I'd handle it differently (make bean soup), but I'd be mad. I also think that perhaps the mom gave him more responsability than he could handle and should cut him some slack. Barbara Coloroso would ask him how he was going to fix the situation. But I digress......

Then he goes up the beanstalk and starts stealing stuff from the giant. Stealing is bad, even from mean people. The poor giant can't do anything right. When he gets upset about being stolen from they cut down the beanstalk and kill him. Jack didn't find out until afterwards that the giant had stolen from them in the first place.

I just like to think about the stories instead of just reading the words, and that's what this thread is about.

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#213 of 236 Old 02-28-2007, 04:19 PM
 
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Originally Posted by pixiepunk View Post
re: green eggs and ham - the message we take away from that (and the one we discuss with DD everytime we read it) is that sometimes you think you're not going to like something just because of the way it looks, but then if you try it you might be surprised to discover that you really do like it.
Same message I received and relayed to my ds.

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#214 of 236 Old 02-28-2007, 05:40 PM
 
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My mom thinks dd needs to say please more, so she got her a book that was called Say Please. Jeez she is only 2, I don't think it is necessary for her to say please all day long. I tossed that book, it was horrible.
Moms can be silly.

You know every time that I read this thread I consider suggesting a Children's Books I Love! but then I think about the fact that people will say I love BOOK. Then someone will say I hate BOOK.:

I have found some really neat books because of this thread though.
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#215 of 236 Old 02-28-2007, 05:47 PM
 
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I pretty much hate all the "Mommy (occasionally Daddy too) loves you SOOO MUCH! I love you more than anything in the world! You're loved! We love you!" books. Children who are loved know that they are loved. They don't need a picture book to tell them that, and IME the books tend to bore them. I always think those books just give the parents a chance to feel mawkish and self-congratulatory about what wonderful, loving parents they are toward their wonderful, special children.
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#216 of 236 Old 02-28-2007, 06:38 PM
 
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I haven't been able to read all 11 pages of this thread, but it is interesting to see other's prespectives.

I absolutely detest all the "noisy" books that my MIL bought my DD. There is the zoo train and another colours one that are extremely loud. One is now residing under my couch and the other is reserved for those extra special messy diapers.

I also dislike some of the touch and feel books. There is one that starts out with a picture of a lion and says "the lion is the king of the jungle" Um...lions don't live in the jungle!

Sandra SAHM to Kayleigh and welcoming Emily January 2010
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#217 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 02:53 AM
 
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I have to agree about the Love You, Forever book. It's just plain creepy. And the little runaway bunny wouldn't want to run away if his mother would just give him some freakin' space. Let the poor bunny breathe, for Peter Rabbit's sake.

My least favorite books (though my dd is totally engrossed with them, and I do mean enGROSSED) are the Disney princess books. We tried successfully for over 3 years to keep them out of our home and then, lo and behold, we had a birthday party that rained down princess schlock in buckets. Why are their lives always so dismal and repairable only with the aid of some singing, royal forest-stalker in tights? A friend's daughter recently asked her mother, "When are you going to die?". Understandably, the friend was a little taken aback and asked her daughter what brought this question on. Her daughter (only 3, by the way) answered that all the princesses' mommies were dead, so she naturally assumed her own mother would be going the way of the dodo soon. She wasn't upset by the idea; if anything, she seemed completely unfazed -- having accepted the untimely demise of her beloved mother as simply being the way of the world. Thank you Hans, Walt and those oh-so-entertaining and aptly named Grimm boys.

Other books I ain't too keen on a-readin' are Spotty (absolutely horrible! - one of the rabbits in a litter of approximately a billion little white bunnies comes out with appalling brown spots. Because he is different, his mother's friends and sisters speak badly of him, shun him and invariably he is left home alone while everyone else trots off to his grandfather's birthday party because the mother is ashamed of him and certain the horrid old grandfather bunny won't love him. There is a "happy ending", but my kid is fairly sensitive -- she'd break down in tears if we read this in our house.). Equally, Millions of Cats would have the same effect. A childless, elderly couple decide to adopt a cat. News spreads among the feline community and millions of cats, all eager and anxious to be the couple's pet show up on their doorstep to vie for the honor. The couple explains they can only choose one which leads to an all out death match (literally) among the kit-kats, who claw and bite one another until only one scrawny kitten who hid under a bush remains. Pleasant, no? I remember this being a Weekly Reader pick when I was in kindergarten, I think. Granted, that was many moons ago -- when dynamite and shotguns were the usual props in children's cartoons.

I have to say, I just don't get In the Night Kitchen and I can't stand the wickedly depressed completely vacuous mother in Outside Over There.

Some absolutely GREAT books however -
Our all time favorite - I Know the Moon (really, the most beautiful kids' book I've ever had the pleasure of reading)
The Widow's Broom (it may sound horrible, but the image of a ghostly, axe-carrying broom roaming the forest late at night just makes me smile and smile - trust me, it's funny)
Busy Night (got my daughter to stop being afraid of giant lobster monsters that occasionally liked to take up residence under her bed -- have no idea where that came from)
The Hidden Treasure (if you love gardening and aren't so keen on laziness, you'll like this one)
and Monster, Monster (teaches kids that things are not always what they seem)
oh, and The Big Orange Splat (celebrating diversity, acceptance and art all in just a few short pages).
Of course, I like these books for their messages, but mostly, because they're fun to read.
Just throwin' my 5 cents in (I babbled on way too long for it to be just 2).
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#218 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 12:49 PM
 
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Corrections, corrections -
It's The Big Orange Splot (not splat) by D. Manus Pinkwater
and The Buried Treasure (not hidden) by Djemma Bider. One more my daugher (and my dh and I) love is Guess How Much I Love You. Too sweet!
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#219 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 04:50 PM
 
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I love The Big Orange Splot, too. I used to love to read it LOUDLY on my front porch, especially when my horrible neighbors were out. If only I had the courage to paint bulldozers and naked ladies on my house! It would be so worth it just to see the looks on their faces.
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#220 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 05:22 PM
 
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I bought this book based on the awesome reviews it had on Amazon and because it was about a lion with special needs "Leo The LAte Bloomer"

I HATE this book. So much so that when I got it I put it aside and never let the kids see it. Its about this lion who can't talk and in the end finally does, the part everyone leaves out in the reviews is the section of the book where Leos father decides "to stop watching Leo and watch tv instead" and there are like four pages of the book where it says over and over blah, blah, blah, "leos father still wasnt watching"

It pretty much made dads of SN kids out to be ignorant TV watching creeps (and my DH is FAR from that). I was pissed. I couldnt believe a book that bashed fathers so badly was given such high reviews. I still have it hidden away. Why I don;t know. I should throw it away. No one should read that trash.
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#221 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 05:38 PM
 
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Well I'm sure this has been mentioned, but I really hate "I'm a Big Sister" (I think that's the title). Baby is bottlefed, of course, and it never ONCE shows the mom holding it! It's held by dad when it's being fed, but other than that it's in a stroller or walker. Yuck. I hate that freaking book.
We had the same one for big brothers. Litterally the baby is in the stroller outside, and anytime he's inside, he's strapped into the carseat. Why would a baby be strapped into a carseat while wide awake and "playing" with his big brother?:

Single mom of 2 boys
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#222 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 05:55 PM
 
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. . .about a lion with special needs "Leo The LAte Bloomer"

Interesting how we all have our own perspectives and can read the same book with such different eyes. Bear in mind, I haven't read it in a while, but I didn't see it AT ALL like you describe.

First off, I don't see Leo as having "special needs," I just thought he had his own individual time table. And I thought the father was adorable, pretending not to watch, but so interested in his own kid that he couldn't help it. Some parents feel a lot of pressure if their kid isn't performing according to "the experts" milestone calendar.

Our DS definitely has his own time table. He did everything late, but eventually he did get there. I think this book is a fun reassurance that even if Zoe walked at 10 months and your DC is still figuring it out at 17 months (like my kid), it's okay. They'll get there, even if you don't stress out and watch them every second.
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#223 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 06:10 PM
 
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First off, I don't see Leo as having "special needs," I just thought he had his own individual time table. And I thought the father was adorable, pretending not to watch, but so interested in his own kid that he couldn't help it. Some parents feel a lot of pressure if their kid isn't performing according to "the experts" milestone calendar.
Yeah, that was my take on it too.
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#224 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 06:14 PM
 
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I don't understand the appeal of Goodnight Moon either, but toddlers LOVE LOVE LOVE it, so it stays in our house. Sometimes it doesn't have to make sense to be a good book.

g.
I like "Goodnight Moon"--I think it's the page that says, "Good night, nobody." There's just something so funny about it.
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#225 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 06:21 PM
 
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I think it's weird how many people think the mother in Runaway Bunny is too controlling. (It's been mentioned before in threads like this.) It's about a little bunny, not a bunny who's grown up and ready to get his own apartment. If you were a little kid thinking about running away, would you want your mom to just shrug and say, "Okay, bye, it was nice knowing you?" If your 3 year old did run away, wouldn't you search the world and do whatever it took to find her again?
OK, so this has absolutely NOTHING to do with books, but your question reminded me of something... When my brother and I were little kids, we got mad at my mom and told her we were running away. She packed us sandwiches and apples and wrapped them up in red bandanas which she tied to the end of stick for each of us.

We left the house but couldn't figure out where to go so we sat down on the front boulevard in front of our house (a very quiet little residential neighborhood). We were laying out there on the grass eating our sandwiches when my aunt and uncle came over with our cousins to bring us "May baskets". That was the end of our "running away".
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#226 of 236 Old 03-01-2007, 08:46 PM
 
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OT--warriorprincess, I love your sig. One of my big pet peeves, handled with humor. Love it.

We are six: Me : Dh : Ds1('00) Dd('02) Ds2('05) Ds3('08) and, wow! Soon to be seven, Dd2 due 4/23.
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#227 of 236 Old 03-04-2007, 10:14 PM
 
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Maybe I am alone in this, but I am just so sick and tired of books always having to have a "moral" or teach some stupid lesson.

This is why I love the Richard Scarry books we have. They're just filled with life, and how stuff works, and cool drawings!!

But I just disagree so strongly with little kids being preached at all of the time - although thankfully, I think my child doesn't even notice it most of the time (He's 3). But I have had to eliminate so many books from our repertoire because of this - some of those older books are really bad. In order to teach kids a lesson, they are either beaten or threatened with it!

But anyway, I just wish books didn't focus so much on that... why do all of these books try to instill morals in my kid? That's my job. Lay off it!

Although I do have to admit that every I read "Because a person's a person, no matter how small!" in Horton Hears a Who, it does bring tears to my eyes. :
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#228 of 236 Old 03-04-2007, 11:45 PM
 
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"As turtles and, maybe, all creatures should be" from yertle the turtle does the same thing to me (I read it to my high school students every Dr. Suess day and we talk about Dr. Suess as a political activist, so it's fresh in my mind).
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#229 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 01:27 AM
 
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Green Eggs and Ham - You get pestered to do something you don't want to do until you give in. Especially when this is a message about food - You might not be hungry, or in the mood for eggs but I'm pestering you to eat them anyway. Not a good way to teach kids to stick up for themselves or to listen to their bodies about food.

I am perplexed by this response to this book. It's supposed to be FUNNY. It's over the top, not serious. The whole point of it is the absolute absurdity of the story and the ridiculous lengths Sam goes to. Kids think it's silly fun. I think it's silly fun. And sometimes humor is a way to get through to people of all ages with a message. In this case, the message is simple, "you might like something if you actually tried it". I don't see anything so awful about that.
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#230 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 01:40 AM
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Love You Forever. The big guy in his mother's lap just creeps me out.
I liked this book UNTIL we received a copy from my MIL!

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#231 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 01:42 AM
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There aren't any i HATE at the moment...

BUT - I never understood the appeal of...



Goodnight Gorilla
It's the page that says, "Goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight." It's fun to read. (Yeah, looks kinda boring just in text, I know!)

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#232 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 01:46 AM
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and amelia bedelia: stupid is not that funny to me.
She's not necessarily stupid; she's just very literal. "Dust the furniture" means put dust on it, and "string the beans" means put strings on them! A "shower" for a guest means just that......shower her with water.

We find the books hilarious!

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#233 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 01:59 AM
 
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There aren't any i HATE at the moment...

BUT - I never understood the appeal of...

Goodnight Moon
Chicka-Chicka Boom Boom
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie
Olivia
Moo-Baa-La-La
Goodnight Gorilla
You've gotta read the Chicka Chicka Boom Boom with a rhythm. That's the whole fun of the book! Clap along or bounce while you read it rhythmically. Fun!
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#234 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 03:40 PM
 
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I just asked my five-year-old daughter, Ramona, whether she likes the book Rainbow Fish. She said yes. I said, "What do you like about it?"

While banging furiously on a blob of playdough with a hammer, and without even looking at me, she said,

Quote:
Originally Posted by My daughter Ramona
I like that even though Rainbow Fish is mean to the little fish, he [the little fish] keeps coming back and asking for what he needs. You always tell me to do that. And I like that Rainbow Fish finds out that he can do something to make the other fish happy, because he didn't really know that at the beginning of the book. But he found out that he could do something good for the world.
Namaste!
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#235 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 03:47 PM
 
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It's the page that says, "Goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight." It's fun to read. (Yeah, looks kinda boring just in text, I know!)
I had one kid who would laugh hysterically at the teeth in the dark. Dc would clamp his teeth together and say, kind of in a muffled laugh, 'Hi. It's just me". Cracked himself up daily for quite a long time...
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#236 of 236 Old 03-05-2007, 03:55 PM
 
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Love You Forever. The big guy in his mother's lap just creeps me out.
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Originally Posted by felix23 View Post
: The mom in I love you forever needs to cut the apron strings and let her son grow up. I really hate that book, it is just creepy.
Ah, I love that book. My mom gave it to me after DD was born, and it made me cry. It was touching to see someone want to hold her baby, and even more touching to see that mama nurturing attitude carried out past infancy (something that is lacking from both mine and my husband's family).

Frankenstein never scared me. Marsupials do. Because they're FAST.
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