To pay tribute to their art and in honor of September’s distinction as National Literacy Month, here are eight great examples of local literary brilliance for families.
2. “Maybe I’ll Sleep in the Bathtub Tonight and Other Funny Poems” by Debbie Levy, illustrated by Stephanie Buscema—These humorous poems just for kids will make you laugh and make going to bed actually enjoyable.
3. “Wild About Books” by Judy Sierra, illustrated by Marc Brown—This story of what happens when a bookmobile visits the zoo and the animals all get the reading bug is a must-have in every house with children.
4. “I Love You More Than Rainbows” by Susan E. Crites, illustrated by Mark & Rosemary Jarman—I met this local author at a signing at the Silver Spring Borders (RIP, dear store) and her love for children and the beauty of their world was palpable. Her colorful, joyous illustrations reflect that too!
5. “The Dreamer and The Moon” by Irene Zevgolis—I love this book’s message that children should have goals and dreams, and that a combination of hard work and self-confidence is essential for them to be achieved. My daughter loves all of the ballet illustrations and dance lingo.
6. “If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Worries: Poems for Children and Their Parents” by Judith Viorst—These sensitive, funny and engaging poems get right to the heart of the childhood experience and make for great conversation starters between elementary school-aged kids and their folks.
7. “The Word Eater” by Mary Amato, illustrated by Christopher Ryniak—Magic, science, and understanding of the sixth grade social strata—this charming book has it all!
8. “The Great Gilly Hopkins” by Katherine Paterson—You may have already cried a river for “Bridge to Terabithia” and “Jacob Have I Loved“, but get out the Kleenex again for another moving novel for older kids and tweens by Paterson. In this book a foster home veteran lets down her guard and lets in love.
I know I have left off a ton of incredible children’s books by Washington, DC-dwelling writers. Leave more in the comments below!
Jessica McFadden reads to her three kids daily and blogs (almost) daily at A Parent in Silver Spring, a website for local families.