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Get To Know Children’s Author Oliver Jeffers [video]

get to know oliver jeffersLet’s be real. Children’s books can suck.

My 5 year old is a little slow on the uptake when it comes to reading on his own, so that means we’re the ones that are still flipping the pages and reading aloud to him. We’re picking up the pace on visiting the library more often, but there is still a line I will draw on many bedtime books.

I would rather take my friend’s daughter and 9 of her friends to a Twilight marathon than have to read Robert Munsch‘s Love You Forever before bed time. It may be the 4th best selling children’s book of all time, but the creepy way the mother spies through the window gives me the chills.

There are dozens of others that I flip through at the library, get four pages in at nighttime and then just start ad libbing because the story is so terrible.

There is, however, an author I will gladly engage an “again” wish from kids every time they ask; Oliver Jeffers.

If you don’t recognize his name, you’ll easily remember his art work.

His pictures tell incredible stories and the words on the page are few. Oliver Jeffers‘ imagination is stunning. His story telling is simple. His artwork is subtle.

Simply, his books don’t suck. This great video has been floating around that gives a little peek inside the creative process.

“My name is Oliver, and I draw pictures, and tell stories” he says introducing himself in the clip. When the chicken/egg question is asked about his stories and pictures, Oliver admits his come together. “They both grow up at the same time.”

If you have yet to explore the work of Oliver Jeffers, have a flip through his catalog of books and grab a couple to read to your kids over, and over, and over, and over again – without hating it.

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  • How To Catch A Star 1 of 10
    How To Catch A Star
    Our first book from Oliver, this is the story of a boy who longs to own a star and eventually catches one.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • Lost And Found 2 of 10
    Lost And Found
    This is the one that we can read over, and over, and over. A beautiful story of friendship between a boy and a penguin. The art is so stark and simple, the friendship so genuine that one doesn't question how a an umbrella can be used to sail to Antarctica.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • The Incredible Book Eating Boy 3 of 10
    The Incredible Book Eating Boy
    If you've got a voracious reader in your family, you might say your kid "devours" books. Well, meet Henry... he devours books too - he eats them and gets smarter. A great way to encourage kids to feed their brains with books.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • The Way Back Home 4 of 10
    The Way Back Home
    For kids who are fascinated by rockets, and space, and spacemen, this book brings the idea of space travel right to their bedroom closet. The boy rides a ship to the moon only to be stuck with an alien trying to find his way home.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • The Great Paper Caper 5 of 10
    The Great Paper Caper
    This could be Oliver's version of the Lorax. A great tale about trees that are disappearing and how the residents in the forest band together to save their home.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • The Heart And The Bottle 6 of 10
    The Heart And The Bottle
    A story about growing up and how our perspective changes. I love the books from Jeffers in how they perfectly capture the conflict between adults and kids, they're as much for me as they are my boys. This one will have you thinking twice when you sweat the small stuff.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • Up And Down 7 of 10
    Up And Down
    The boy and the penguin are back in a fun circus adventure. You may think penguins can't fly, but the boy has different ideas to fulfill the dream of his best friend.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • Stuck 8 of 10
    Stuck
    When Floyd's kite gets stuck in a tree, he tosses a shoe up to knock it down. The shoe gets stuck too, and well .. a great lesson in problem solving follows.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • The Hueys In The New Jumper 9 of 10
    The Hueys In The New Jumper
    Jumper is the UK word for sweater in this story of how popularity diminishes individuality. Follow the Hueys as they copy each other in an attempt to be liked, only to struggle to find their individuality.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers
  • This Moose Belongs To Me 10 of 10
    This Moose Belongs To Me
    This Moose Belongs to Me A book about a boy and his pet .. moose. A great story for any child that really wants to have a pet, this book also fosters a great understanding of the wild and a sense of personal responsibility.
    Image via Oliver Jeffers

What are your favorite (and least favorite) bedtime books?

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