Books for Young Readers to Celebrate Father’s Day, Part 3

06.23.11
Theme: Father's Day
“You Can Do Anything Daddy” by Michael Rex

“You Can Do Anything Daddy” by Michael Rex

06.23.11 • 11:58 pm EST | 0 responses |

“You Can Do Anything Daddy” by Michael Rex

If any of you, and I include myself in this category, have read the lengths to which parents will go to insure the safety of their off spring as in that classic, “The Runaway Bunny,” you are in for a hilariously riotous treat in Michael Rex’s book of Daddy derring – do!

A small boy with Dad at his bedside before lights out, asks a variation on the question children have asked parents in one form or another forever –“Daddy, if I got taken by pirates, would you save me?” Here is the heart of the parent/child relationship; namely, how much do I REALLY mean to you? To what lengths of danger and disregard of self-preservation and safety would you pursue me to keep me safe? To some the book may seem to be a bit far fetched and goofy, but this boy, and I’m sure many of his contemporaries, are eager to find the answer to that question – Would Dad heroically battle, not only pirates, but GORILLA pirates, and to make it truly of epic and alien proportion, ROBOT GORILLA PIRATES FROM MARS?

Hey, if we’re going to assign Dad enemy combatants, let’s go for broke shall we?

Tending to the inevitably battle scarred hero-Dad is part of the give and take of this series of thrusts and parries as the war weary Dad inevitably wins the day. The circle of tender devotion is completed as the son nurses the wounds of his tattered, battle scarred hero with the very words his Dad replies to the boy’s original query – “Anything for you.”   It may seem over the top, but so is life at times and why not?

I read a quote recently that is prophetic, provocative and powerful. It sums up, in a few sentences why I believe passionately, we should believe the time we spend reading with our children and encouraging THEM to read is NOT a luxury for any one group. It is, instead, an essential for every parent to attempt to foster and model this passion in their offspring. Here is the quote and please pardon its use of gender specific pronouns.

“A child is a person who is going to carry on what you have started. He is going to sit wherewhere you are sitting and, when you are gone, attend to those things which you think are important. He will assume control of your cities, states and nations. He is going to move in and take over your churches, schools, universities and corporations. All your books are going to be judged, praised or condemned by him. The fate of humanity is in his hands. So it might be well to pay him some attention.”

Abraham Lincoln

And finally, here is a Father’s Day quote from someone else with young children and carries virtually the same message to father’s and parents in general:

“As fathers and parents, we’ve got to spend more time with them and help them with their home- work and turn off the TV set once in a while, turn off the video game and the remote control and read a book to your child.”

President Barack Obama

Here are two quotes echoing the same compelling message. There is one childhood; one time around with children where we can share things, including books, that matter and will resonate throughout young lives, with lifelong gifts of imagination, intellectual growth, inquisitiveness and enjoyment.

This is the “readable moment,” dads. Why not SEIZE it and share some of it with your children and other young people in your life?

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