Does anyone love the Mr. Men and Little Miss book series by Roger Hargreaves? (Yes: Read on and let’s geek out. No: Just read on. Then pick one up, and let’s geek out.)
Without a doubt, Mr. Men and Little Miss were my favorite books when I was a kid. The characters’ colorful shapes, the corny humor, the subtle moral lessons sprinkled in for good measure–each book became a precious item that earned a special place on my bookshelf. Every few weeks, my dad took me and my sister to our local bookstore for a new one. Being a kid is funny, isn’t it? Those childhood memories are some of the best I have.
My wise parents kept our Mr. Men and Little Miss books in pristine condition, and about a year ago, they gave the set as a gift for my 6-year-old son. He adores them. Every night before bed, he chooses two to read. (These days, my favorite part is the 1988 price sticker: $1.50 per book.) Every few weeks, I take him to our local bookstore for a new one, now written and illustrated by Hargreaves’ son Adam.
Bookstores are a wonderful way to keep the magic of reading alive in kids. Here are a few of my North Shore favorites, from independent neighborhood gems to discount books to classic comics.
1151 Church St., Northbrook
Why bookmark it: Personalized recommendations from the friendly book-loving staff, a cozy neighborhood vibe and storytime for little ones at 10:30 a.m. one Saturday each month.
151 Skokie Valley Road, Highland Park
Why bookmark it: A wide variety of very gently used and new books, CDs, LPs, magazines, nostalgia and more at deeply discounted prices.
Glen Town Center, 2651 Navy Blvd., Glenview
Why bookmark it: Special events including author appearances, open mic nights, book club meetings, art shows and storytime for little ones at 10:30 a.m. the first Thursday of each month.
811 Elm St., Winnetka
Why bookmark it: Regular appearances by best-selling authors, book clubs for both adults and kids and 2012 recipient of Publishers Weekly Bookstore of the Year.
3155 W. Dundee Road, Northbrook
Why bookmark it: Marvel, Zenescope, DC, Action Lab and many more classic favorites, plus graphic novels and board games.