When life is busy and chaotic, settling in with a good book usually slows the world down and allows us to escape into imagination. When the book is a children’s story, we share the experience with another, whether we are reading to a child, or the child is reading to us. And when the book is about a topic near and dear to one’s own heart, the reading is all the more enjoyable.
There are many children’s books about the postal experience, and I have selected a few that are among my favorites.
The first, Letters From Felix, by Annette Langen and Constanza Droop, features a lost teddy bear named Felix, who has great adventures as he tries to find his way back to his adoring human, Sophie. The book is not only a charming read, but also a visual delight. Felix writes letters to Sophie telling her where he is and what he sees at each location. And the book has the actual letters, in real envelopes! It is such fun to turn the page and find an actual letter your child can pull out and unfold and read. The letters always have an interesting tidbit about Felix’s current location and Sophie learns a little bit geography along the way.
In The Day the Crayons Quit, by Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers, Duncan goes looking for his box of crayons only to find a stack of letters from the crayons. Each letter expresses a need, like more variety in life or maybe more respect. The red crayon wants to do more than just color hearts and fire trucks. Beige seeks to be more than just “light brown.” And pink, well pink is tired of being considered a “girl color.” Duncan takes the letters to heart and we get a very happy ending.
I Wrote You a Note by Lizi Boyd, Dear Panda by Miriam Latimer, Abuela’s Special Letters by Jacqueline Jules, and The Lonely Mailman by Susanna Isern, all tell stories about how letters connect us to the world around us in unexpected ways. The books are written for children but they will be enjoyed by anyone.
My favorite of all the books I read for this post is Yours Sincerely, Giraffe by Megumi Iwasa. This is the tale of Giraffe, who wants to expand his horizons beyond his native Africa and decides to write to anyone who lives far away. Lucky for Giraffe that Pelican has just started a mail delivery service. As the story progresses we read about Giraffe’s concern about the letter arriving, and then his anticipation of what might be in the return post. Postcrossers will recognize those feelings! Giraffe’s letter ends up with Penguin, who lives in Antarctica. As the letter exchange continues, the fun begins. Imagine trying to describe something that your reader has never seen. Giraffe tells Penguin of his long neck. Penguin has no idea what a neck is, but with the help of Whale, they try to figure it out. The back and forth conversation via letters is both funny and thought provoking. And when Giraffe finally goes to visit Penguin, and decides to dress like what he imagines penguins look like… well, my grandchildren found it quite entertaining!
What are some of your favorite postally theme books for children? Tell us in the comments!
PS – A big thank you to postmuse, who patiently read all these books to her grandchildren and then wrote about them for our blog. 😊
50 comments so far
But perhaps not just meant for them of this I must concede
I want to keep them pristine and enjoy them on my shelf
Do I buy yet another set they can crease and enjoy themself
Has anyone read Same, Same but Different by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw or Pen Pals by Alexandra Pichard? Those are both about Pen Pals. I am going to see if I can find them from the library for my 7-year-old who, after I started with Postcrossing, asked if she could have a pen pal.
-Dear Mr. Blueberry by Simon James
-Dear Mrs. LaRue by Mark Teague (there are other titles in this series.)
-The Post Office Book by Gail Gibbons
Sunny the Meerkat writes home using postcards in "Meerkat Mail" by Emily Gravett. Both are great.
I did not know children's books on this subject :)
Thanks for sharing
With a thick bag on the belt ... about the postman :)
The story "Postage stamp of the country of Gondelupe" I'm not nostalgic about those times, but I want to say in the Soviet books was the soul
There is a Dutch translation (de zeven postbodes) from 2003. It is still available in (on-line) book shops. A few years ago it was my as well as my grandchildren's favorite.
Letter to Felix and and Letters from Santa Claus.
Also, books regarding mail, not so chldren-related but the 'P.S. I love you' can be another example, too...
Last year I was writing about it on my blog: https://blogoknihach.wordpress.com/2017/01/17/expedice-z-pohlednice/ The blog is in the Slovak language, but you can use Slovak->English google translator, the result is very good. Just an update to that blog post: back then, I was starting keeping postcards in a photo album, but then I found filing pockets divided into four parts, originally for photos, which are perfect for the cards of this size. I should post an update also on the blog ;)
I purchased this book as a gift for my daughter - highly recommend it!
I am sorry, I don't know if there are any translations, but for the Dutch reading people, this book by Toon Tellegen is , like all his books, very nice!
Janosch is a famous german author and illustrator of many children's books. He even got the Order of merit of the Federal Republic of Germany ("Bundesverdienstkreuz") for his artistic work.
A German childrens book called "Zum Elefanten immer geradeaus" is also a favourite with my 5 year old. It's about a goat in the mountains looking for a job - and finding one as a mail carrier in Africa. On her first day, she has to deliver a telegramme to the elephant. Only, she doesn't know any African animals... It's a funny little book I love reading as much as my son loves listening to :)
I totally agree with all of the people who recommend "Yours Sincerely, Giraffe." We have the German translation in the library and I recommend it to kids much older than the "recommended" range and also to adults as a short story. It is very simple, but also quite elegant and thoughtful.
Every page was a "postcard": illustration on one side, message to the family back home on the back. I wish I could recall the exact title! Although it may be out of print by now.
I´ve ordered the German version of "Yours sincerely Giraffe" right away. It´s called "Viele Grüße, Deine Giraffe". Looking forward to a lovely read!
But they are all fab.
And the "grown up" version - the Griffin and Sabine books by Nick Bantock. <3
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