• Benjamin Fife

ReadingMagic - Who are your favorite authors of kids books and why? - The Reading Magic Game Day 3


As a young kid, the definition of kids books & fun for me was without a doubt, Dr. Seuss. I recall doing a book report on The Cat in the Hat. No clue how many times I read The Lorax. Then there are of course, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Green Eggs & Ham (Dr. Seuss wrote that one on a dare), The Star Belly Sneetches, Yertle the Turtle, Horton Hears a Who, Oh the Places You’ll Go – that one actually came out when I was a kid – and on and on. Dr. Seuss is on par with Shakespeare in my book when it comes to poetry. And like the Immortalized Bard, if a word didn’t work for a particular rhyme, Seuss improvised, and improvised amazingly. Perhaps the bards invented words are more of our subconscious pantheon of vocabulary than Dr. Seuss’ creations… but he’s had a few more centuries for his ideas to percolate in the collective consciousness. I wouldn’t discount Seuss just yet. Grinch… Thneed… Zoo Zither Kar Zay…



Then of course, you have his drawings. No one else draws like Dr. Seuss. Others may emulate, but its like copying Van Gogh or the unique vibrato of Louis

Armstrong’s trumpet (not to mention his voice). Seuss’ imagination knew no bounds. And someone who can bring together Boris Karloff and Tony the Tiger knows something about storytelling.


My other main favorite author of kids books I feel like I’ve discovered more as an adult than I ever did as a kid is P.D. Eastman. I don’t remember reading any of them as a kid, (though I’m certain I did – or at least heard of them like “Are You My Mother.” I’ve probably read Eastman’s books to & with my kids & had them read to me & used them to help my kids learn to read (we homeschool) more than any other books. We’ve got at least 2 copies of Go, Dog Go and Fish out of Water. I love Eastman’s simple almost geometric drawings of animals, houses, and about anything else. His use of simple words repetitiously, but still simply combined with brilliant illustrations make his books a delight to encounter again and again… though I still think the one dog is pretty darn rude about the other dog’s hats.





Eastman & Seuss were both masters of simplicity, drawing, humor, and innocence - successfully transforming kids books from Dick & Jane into a true art form.




Who were & are your favorite Kids book authors?