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Buddy Books for Beginners

By Yvonne Coleman
As children begin to read on their own, they often gravitate towards series that highlight friendships - child and grandparent, brother and sister, boy and his dog, animal pals. The well-defined characters and their warmly humorous adventures dispense a comforting familiarity that turns the reader into the "third friend." The bonding with books and their inhabitants thus begins for the eager new reader.

The following books are in order from "tried and true" to "fresh and new":

Frog and Toad
By Arnold Lobel

These readers are true classics of the friendship genre. Frog and Toad repeatedly demonstrate the meaning of supportive friendship, through everyday
failures and fears. Look for Lobel's gentle humor, in carefully chosen words and expressive illustrations, in ...

Frog and Toad are Friends
Harpercollins Juvenile Books; ISBN: 0060239573

Frog and Toad Together
Harpercollins Juvenile Books; ISBN: 006023959X
and many other titles . . .

Oliver & Amanda

By Jean Van Leeuwen

Can little sister and big brother exist as friends? Yes, in the caring world of Oliver and Amanda Pig there is mutual respect, expected sibling rivalry and a large measure of imaginative play. The two endearing pigs, shown in bright, cheery scenes by Ann Schweninger, alternately share and "hog" the spotlight in such titles as ...

Amanda Pig and Her Best Friend LollipopAmanda Pig and Her Big Brother Oliver
Puffin; ISBN: 0140370080, $3.99

Tales of Oliver Pig
Puffin; ISBN: 0140370080, $3.99

Amanda Pig and Her Best Friend Lollipop
Dial Books for Young Readers; ISBN: 0803719825, $13.99

Henry and Mudge

By Cynthia Rylant

There is nothing so poignant as the relationship between a boy and his big, goofy dog. Henry shares the simple pleasures of life with Mudge, a dog with no power of speech or special tricks. Mudge is simply and thus, extraordinarily, a dog - drool and all. Join the unconditional love, drawn by Sucie Stevenson with simple lines and boy/dog hugs, in ...

Henry and Mudge: The First Book of Their Adventures
Aladdin Paperbacks; ISBN: 0689810059, $3.99

Henry and Mudge and Annie's Perfect Pet: The Twentieth Book of Their Adventures
Simon & Schuster (Juv); ISBN: 0689811772 , $15.00
and all between and all to come.

Mr. Putter & Tabby Feed the FishMr. Putter and Tabby

by Cynthia Rylant

With her ever sure-footed path through human nature, Ms. Rylant again offers a sweet and funny relationship between a frumpy old man and his twitchy tabby cat. Teamed with Arthur Howard's chalky colors and squiggly lines, the characters emerge as the pair one would want to live next door. Silly details and ordinary adventures can be found in ...

Mr. Putter & Tabby Take the Train
Harcourt Brace; ISBN: 0152017860, $13.00

Mr. Putter & Tabby Feed the Fish
Harcourt Brace; ISBN: 0152024085, $15.00
and a host of other titles.

Gus and Grandpa

By Claudia Mills

Gus and his Grandpa have much to learn from each other in these paeons to inter-generational friendships. The two share secret jokes, common interests in receiving mail and playing the lottery, and they weather sensitive moments together. Grandpa has a mild heart attack, and Grandpa can't find his car in the parking lot. Gus is taught to deal with these problems by, of course, his beloved grandpa. Catherine Stock's soft-edged illustrations complement the simple story lines. Don't miss ...

Gus and Grandpa and Show-and-Tell
Farrar Straus & Giroux (Juv); ISBN: 0374328196, $13.00

Gus and Grandpa Ride the Train
Sunburst; ISBN: 0374428131, $4.45
and all the other good times with this "dynamic duo."

Minnie and Moo

By Denis Caze

Two bovine best friends provide the very best in slapstick humor and yes, shared dreams and deeds. Children, and adults, will laugh out loud at the predicaments that the twosome encounter, but they will also enjoy their willingness to try new things. Strange logic, hilarious word play, rollicking watercolor and pencil illustrations - all combine to create a silly and very popular series. Dip in with any title, but personal favorites include ...

Minnie and Moo Go to the Moon
DK Publishing; ISBN: 0789425378, $3.95

Minnie and Moo and the Musk of Zorro
DK Publishing; ISBN: 0789426528, $12.95

Iris and Walter

By Elissa Haden Guest

New to the "buddy book" scene is this charming series about a young city girl thrust into the country and inevitable boredom and loneliness - unti she meets Walter. There are wonderful times ahead as each presents the joys of city life and country life to each other. The subtle color tones, awash over the sketchy drawings of Christine Davenier are a delight, as they reflect the beauty of the country and the broad movements of a growing friendship. Welcome the latest tribute to early reader "pals" by locating ...

Iris and Walter: True FriendsIris and Walter
Gulliver Books; ISBN: 0152021221, $14.00

Iris and Walter: True Friends
Harcourt Brace; ISBN: 0152021213, $14.00




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