M has recently discovered Syd Hoff’s wonderful stories, and I’m rediscovering how much I loved them as a child. We own Danny and the Dinosaur, which is a favorite, but M ran across the Syd Hoff collection at our library. Interestingly, he knew they were somehow connected to Danny and the Dinosaur, because the illustrations are so similar. (LOVE the illustrations!)
So, on to our new top four Syd Hoff books…
Sammy the Seal, written in 1959 :This is the story of a seal who lives in the zoo, but is allowed to have a day off because of good behavior. :) What I love about Syd Hoff is his ability to really know the imagination of a child, and to make this kind of idea seem perfectly reasonable!
Thunderhoof, written in 1971:This is the story of a wild horse who doesn’t want to be tamed, but eventually realizes that being loved isn’t so bad after all. M likes to say “Good old feller” a lot after reading this book. :)
Oliver, written in 1960:Oliver is an elephant who had hoped to be in the circus, but the circus doesn’t need him. He spends time with some children (who adore him; who wouldn’t want an elephant to play with?), and eventually the circus realizes just how talented Oliver really is.
Julius, written in 1959: Julius is a gorilla and leaves the jungle to work at the circus. He is the epitome of politeness – a real gentleman, and I really crack up at how he goes out of his way to be polite (this is a great model for kids!). He ends up being pestered by a fly and scares a few people as he tries to shoo the fly away, but he is simply misunderstood. Julius has such a big heart, and I think this was M’s favorite – he has asked for it daily and it’s one of his “in bed” books at night.
Have a beautiful day! :)