Those of you who know me know that I love children’s books. In fact, “Lisa’s Book List,” — featuring my recommended children’s books — is one of the most appreciated hand-outs in my classes.

I love books in general and happily dove into the world of children’s books when Ezra was born ten years ago. Some folks would probably consider me “picky” when it comes to books; I choose to think of it as “discerning.” After all, sitting with our children and reading them a book is, whether we realize it or not, an endorsement of that book: of it’s language, of it’s aesthetics and of it’s values.

We have read two books lately that will definitely make it onto the next update of my book list: Winter Candle and The Rag Coat. Winter Candle conveys much-needed messages about community and religious tolerance and The Rag Coat models a strong way to counter bullying and to remember what is important.

Of course, what I love about these two books is that they convey these messages without any “preaching”; to my boys, they are just really good stories that we can snuggle on the couch together and enjoy… and that is just how it should be!