Children’s Book Giveaway: Gossie.
August 10, 2010

I hope that everybody reading this is familiar with Gossie – so familiar that you think you might have recited it in your sleep last night – and if you are not, then I have two words for you: LIBRARY and NOW.

Do you want my honest opinion?  The entire Gossie series, written and illustrated by Olivier Dunrea (who, by the way, is one of my favorite children’s illustrators of all time), is brilliant.  And this, the first book in the series, rules.  It is simple, creative, lovely, and chock full of vocabulary that every child needs to learn.

Gossie is a story about a gosling who loves her red boots.  She wears her red boots everywhere, but one day when she wakes up, they’re gone.  After searching high and low, Gossie finds her friend Gertie (who shows up in more prominent roles in some of the other Dunrea books) wearing them.  And, in the end, Gossie and Gertie share the red boots.  The last page shows each of them walking together with only one boot on.

Which, okay, this is a tangent, but I have this memory from when I was little.  My sister and I had a pair of hot pink pumps in our dress-up treasure chest (a.k.a. an old, beat-up Rubbermaid container) and one day we were fighting over who would get to wear them.  So my parents said we could each wear one.  This book reminds me of that, of walking down the hall with a hot pink pump on one foot, feeling on top of the world.

Anyway, random memories aside, Gossie is a sweet story that teaches the valuable lesson of sharing.  It has a simple plot and it uses very straightforward language, both of which are fantastic for young readers.  Moreover, the images are expressive, which opens the door for conversations with small children.  When I read Gossie with Charlotte, I point out to her the similarities and differences between the images and demonstrate to her what some of the words, such as walking backwards, mean.

The best part of the book (besides being generally adorable) is probably the vocabulary, though.  It is hard to find a children’s book that illustrates common vocabulary such as uphill and downhill without being dull.  Gossie is, of course, the exception.

Obviously.  Otherwise, I wouldn’t be writing about it.

Pros: Young children and early readers all seem to love this book.  It’s vibrant, funny, and simple.  The words can be easily sounded-out and Gossie is the cutest gosling anybody has ever seen.

Cons: Although the series as a whole appeals to school-age children, my experience has been that individual books do not.  The books use fragmented sentences and the plot is too undeveloped for older kids to take much interest.

Borrow or Buy: Buy.

What to do: You can enter this giveaway by leaving a comment below or sending me an e-mail mentioning a childhood memory you have related to sharing.  All you need is an e-mail address.  The giveaway ends Sunday evening at 9 P.M. Pacific Time and the winners will be announced next Tuesday morning.  You can leave one entry every day, for a total of up to six entries.

For extra entries: This is on the honor system, so please be honest.  I will award you one extra entry if you vote for me at Top Mommy Blogs by clicking here or at Top Baby Blogs by clicking here.  Each day you vote, I will award you two additional entries.  I am hoping to maintain or move into a spot in the top ten on both sites so that we can slowly begin to reach more parents about the joys and importance of reading with children.

To purchase this book: You can buy Gossie through Amazon.com (that link uses my affiliate code) or locate a local retailer through Indie Bound.org.

Odin says: I know that I’ve already done this, um, about five million times.  BUT, I think I figured out how to fix the coding on the Friends of Odin page.  (Thanks, Rebecca!)  So again, if you have an Odin button, let me know and hopefully I will have the page active before the end of the week.  I may have lost a few links in the meantime, so if you don’t see your link when the page goes live, just berate me a bit and I’ll take care of it!

*** The winner of last week’s book giveaway (Bedtime for Mommy by Amy Krouse Rosenthal) was Ellie.  Congratulations, Ellie!


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  1. By on August 10, 2010

    Red Chair - My brother and I had a little red plastic chair, we used to fight almost every morning before my father came up with the every other day we had the chair, then we were satisfied with our day of the sitting in the chair, funny how as kids that was SOOOOO important who got to sit in the chair for the day…I truly loved that chair.  I would love to win this book for my miss Katelyn!  Thank you for your wonderful blog, I think you are such a talented writer, so very lucky to have such a great family and I am so lucky to hear about them, thanks so much for sharing, enjoy!

  2. By Kimberly O' on August 10, 2010

    Those illustrations are cute!!! My brothers are 11 & 13 years older than me so I didn’t do much sharing with them. However, my best friend was tts boy next door. Ryan quickly became my little brother. I played He-man & Skeletor at his house and he came over to play Barbies at mine. I remember going on vacation once and he was really sad that we were going to be gone for awhile so I let him borrow my favorite Cabbage Patch doll. 2 weeks later when we got home, I found my doll was perfectly taken care of and Ryan had even potty trained her so I no longer had to buy diapers ;) Ryan stayed my best friend all the way through college and unexpectently passed away about 2 years ago. Thst is where we got our Charlotte’s middle name from - Ryann.

  3. By Mailis on August 10, 2010

    I remember sharing a blanket with my little brothers in the back seat during long road trips. I also recall allowing my shoulder to be used as a pillow on many occasions. :)

    Kimberly…what a beautiful story. I’m so sorry you lost Ryan.

  4. By Whitney Saunders on August 10, 2010

    It’s a recent memory, but it’s my favorite…

    The first night we brought our little Baby Q home and shared our bed. Mr. Husband and I with Q sleeping in the middle. It will always be my favorite sharing memory.

  5. By Mallory on August 10, 2010

    My sister and I shared a doll. She was the only Hispanic looking doll we had (we’re Mexican), and we both loved her.

    Kimberly, I’m so sorry for your loss.

  6. By Heidi on August 10, 2010

    I love this series!  They are so cute.  We have Gossie and Gertie, and Peedie.  I’d love to add this one to the collection!

    I have two sisters, so there was a lot of sharing going on in my house.  My most vivid sharing memory, however, is the sharing of the ONE bathroom we grew up with.  Yes.  One.  My poor dad!

  7. By on August 10, 2010

    I’m going to bend the rules and write about sharing from just this morning with me two kids.
    My 9 month old daughter was napping in my arms and my 3 1/2 year old son put his favorite little bear on her tummy and said “I will share this with Sophie…maybe it will help her sleep better”

    I voted on both sites

  8. By on August 10, 2010

    I just want to add that my favorite of this book series is Ollie the stomper

  9. By Sara on August 10, 2010

    I love this seris We have gossie & gertie. I’d love to add this one (in all fairness, this was a gift and only recently realized it was a series.)

    My brother and I shared legos. Oh, how we loved legos and we shared them and build cities together.

  10. By Kelly on August 10, 2010

    Hello!  Super cute series!  I was the oldest of five so, although I can’t think of any sharing stories off the top of my head, I know I learned how…somehow!

    Thanks for the post.

  11. By on August 10, 2010

    LOL I remember sharing my lunch every day in grade one with my best friend. *shaking my head* One day I brought in soup. I took a spoonful, then my best friend took a spoonful. Then I took a spoonful, and my best friend took a spoonful…. etc. etc. etc. We did that every day through grade 1 (or maybe it was only a week but I remember that tradition lasting a very long time).

    P.S. I voted for both Top Mommy Blogs and Top Baby Blogs.

  12. By Elin on August 10, 2010

    We love Gossie!  Emmeline goes back to the page with the rain and the snow about 47 times when we read it.  Gossie is a favorite around our house.  I don’t really need to win another copy, but I’ll enter anyway.  She could always use a back-up copy at grand-mother’s house.  My brother was eight years younger than me, so we didn’t share much, but the backseat of the car was… interesting.  My mom finally declared that we couldn’t “share” the area between us.  My brother responded by getting as close as possible to it, but not touching me.  It drove me CRAZY!!!

  13. By beyond on August 10, 2010

    my sister and i shared giggles and stories in the dark after lights out.

  14. By Dana on August 10, 2010

    Staying up really late with a flashight reading my giant busy town book (or at least looking at all of the pictures) I found my little dude doing the same thing last week. LOVE IT!

  15. By on August 10, 2010

    I shared a room with my sister growing up.  MOST of the time we got along pretty well, but there were times when we would have to draw the line across the room.  Sometimes NOT sharing is a good thing!!

  16. By Janelle @ Brimful Curiosities on August 10, 2010

    My great-great aunt had this viewing device called a stereoscope that my brother and I both loved to use.  If we didn’t share, she would put it away immediately.

  17. By Miss Pippi on August 10, 2010

    I adore the Gossie books. I try to share them with everyone I know. The illustrations are so adorable. Thank you for sharing such a great book.

  18. By on August 10, 2010

    Yay!  I’m so excited about having won your giveaway last week.

    So Gossie sounds like a delightful book, too.  And Gossie is such a perfect name for the lead character.  And it teaches an important lesson about sharing.  So many reasons to love this book!  Thanks for reviewing it!

  19. By on August 10, 2010

    -I voted for you on Top Mommy Blogs.

  20. By on August 10, 2010

    -I voted for you on Top Baby Blogs, too!

  21. By on August 10, 2010

    Oops, I was so excited about Gossie that I forgot to share my memory about sharing!  So my sister and I were taught when we were quite young by our mother a great technique for sharing an edible treat (like the last piece of cake, etc).  One person cuts, and the other chooses.  I figured out early on that’s it’s better to be the one who chooses, but it’s still a great technique to use “a la famille” when treats are in demand but in short supply!

  22. By on August 11, 2010

    We love this book in our house, we got it from the library but would love to add it to our collection…

  23. By Jennifer W on August 11, 2010

    I was an only child for 10 years, so sharing was not a strength for me. When my sister was born, I always wanted to help my mom take care of her. I remember giving her my favorite doll. I was so excited for her to have it…looking back she was probably too young for it though. haha.

  24. By Jennifer W on August 11, 2010

    I voted!

  25. By beyond on August 11, 2010

    just voted for you on both blogs!

  26. By Miss Pippi on August 11, 2010

    I don’t think anyone can pick a favorite out of the Gossie series. They are all fantastic!

  27. By on August 11, 2010

    Another sharing memory ...  Actually, this is a memory about how my sister and I DIDN’t have to share.  Lucky little girls that we were, we had not just one but two wiener dogs.  So whenever we took them for a walk, we each got to hold a leash.  And there was always a dog for each of us to snuggle at home.

  28. By on August 11, 2010

    Top Mommy Blogs vote today!

  29. By on August 11, 2010

    Top Baby Blogs vote today!

  30. By Kate on August 12, 2010

    I have 4 sisters, so sharing was happening lots.
    One specific memory was at the library, after the end of the summer reading program. We each were allowed to have 2 cookies. The librarian passed one to Erica (my oldest sister) and then passed her another one. She passed it down to Mic, the librarian gave Erica another one and she passed it to mic who passed it to me.  Finally the librarian told Erica that we were allowed to have two.  We were just so used to sharing!

  31. By Kate on August 12, 2010

    I voted on Top Mommy Blogs

  32. By Lyndsey on August 12, 2010

    I shared a room with my older sister…her side was sooo messy and my side…well you could totally tell where the room was divided :) I made my bed everyday and put all my stuffed animals on the bed…to this day I still make my bed everyday…it drives the husband crazy :P

  33. By Jennifer W on August 12, 2010

    I voted today!

  34. By on August 12, 2010

    Ahhh sharing. My sister is three years younger. So, as we were learning the ins and outs of sharing, what I remember most is, “ Brook, one day she’ll be bigger than you. She’ll turn around, deck you, and I won’t do anything to stop it!“ And then, I’d right the course and share. (Although, I’m still waiting for her to be bigger than me…)

  35. By on August 12, 2010

    My sister shared her old clothes with me, but since she was/is 4 years older, I think she was fine with it!  She still loves to give me hand-me-downs.  Something must have stuck!

  36. By on August 12, 2010

    voted for you on TMB.

  37. By on August 12, 2010

    voted for you on TBB.

  38. By on August 13, 2010

    Since my sister and I were 2 years apart growing up I have lots of memories of us “sharing” and not in the good, nice way.  :)  On a nicer note, my sister always likes to remind me how I told my friend I couldn’t play with her and I stayed home and played with my sister instead (we were playing “office”).  Sharing time counts, right?!

  39. By on August 13, 2010

    My brothers and I used to love to play dress up in one of my mom’s old flannel nightgowns when we were little. (Think Little House on the Prairie nightgown).  Because it was so big when we were so little, we used to unbutton the neck and all three of us would squeeze into it at once.  We used to call ourselves the three-headed monster and run around the house (as best as you can run when you are sharing a nightgown with two other people).  One of my favorite pictures of us when we were young is of the three of us sharing this nightgown.

  40. By on August 13, 2010

    My sister and I shared a dress-up box and we loved dressing up as Indian princesses together.  (We had quite a few saris in the box!)

  41. By on August 13, 2010

    —Top Mommy Blogs vote today!

  42. By on August 13, 2010

    —Top Baby Blogs vote today!

  43. By Lisa on August 14, 2010

    My sister and I and some neighbours always played school(guess we couldn’t get enough of it). We shared(took turns) being the teacher since this was always the best role. Hope I win this book for Tiny who is growing in my belly.

  44. By on August 14, 2010

    Our family shared a bathroom, which meant that my sister and I had to be fast using the bathroom in the morning.  When we were really little, we took baths together, which was fun, but we outgrew baths and moved on to showers.

  45. By on August 14, 2010

    I cast my vote for you on TMB today!

  46. By on August 14, 2010

    I cast my vote for you on TBB today!

  47. By on August 15, 2010

    My parents encouraged my sister and I to share with each other.  But there was one thing they said was best never to share.  Your toothbrush!  Guess there’s a limit to everything!

  48. By on August 15, 2010

    TBB - my vote was cast today.

  49. By on August 15, 2010

    TMB - my vote was cast today.


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