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Our Collectable Books and Favourite Reads Ages 0 - 4

Most of the books on this list are picture books, which most often are recommended for ages 4+. With all of the books below, we started reading them at an earlier age, due to the accessibility of the stories through illustrations. At different times, we will read the full text, or we might tell a much abridged, or higher-level version based on how the audience (17 months and 3 years) is feeling. Whichever way they are read, these books bring joy and deepen our love of reading every time. They have made the "parents are able to read multiple times in a row without cringing" list and more than that have touched our hearts and become familiar friends to visit and curl up with for many years to come.

This is a book to enjoy over and over again. And each time through, to re-imagine the text that accompanies the detailed, animated, and life-giving illustrations by David Wiesner in Mr. Wuffles! It is amazing how after many times through this book, one only begins to discover the many layers of context, story, and interplay between Mr. Wuffles and the groups of characters involved. It is a rollercoaster of emotion from elation and joy through dismay, suspense, deep collaboration and bonding, exhilaration, hope, and a longing for home. It is exciting through the last page and is sure to inspire emotion through story telling in even the most unanimated of readers.

After discovering Jerry Pinkney, and already having a love for the tales of Margaret Wise Brown, we were very excited to discover A Home in the Barn, which is a collaboration between the two. Neither disappoints in this case, where both the text and the pictures bring to life the seasonal change to winter on a farm, as well as the character of the animals who live there. When reading this book, you can feel the drop in temperature through the howling wind and frosty trees, as well as the contrast of warmth inside the barn of sweet smelling hay, animal heat in close quarters, and an atmosphere of high life thankful for shelter.

The Lion and the Mouse was our first introduction to the glorious world of Jerry Pinkney. His illustrations transport through time and space and convey all the senses through what is only seen. Testimate to this, there are no words in this book, the illustrations tell the story of the mouse and the lion and the famous fable that results from their meetings. Bringing to life not only the mouse and lion themselves, but also their context - the harshness of the sub-Saharan desert, each one's family and respective roles as providers and protectors. One realizes quickly that t