As someone who spends many hours each day with children’s books, I can tell you there are some great ones out there…and some not-so-great ones. Usually, the ones in the latter part of the list have just missed the mark, either with a topic that’s too far above it’s intended reader, with language that just doesn’t appeal to a reader (or parent), or a plot that doesn’t really exist. But many of these books get published anyway, and often I wonder why and how.
But the celebrity author is a new trend that really mystifies me. Just because someone is famous and has a child does NOT mean they should write children’s books. Apparently, Hollywood doesn’t care. And with an established name, publishing houses are probably quick to jump on the bandwagon. Who wouldn’t buy a book written by Madonna or Tori Spelling?? I mean, come on….they’re famous! And so, they get a book published, people buy it out of curiosity, and this sends the message that they should write more. Why wouldn’t they, if the first book sold so well?
What are these books saying about the celebrities themselves? Do they really have something to say that will make sense to the general masses? Or are they so out of touch with the real world that they think their topics are really important? You decide. Here are a few books by celebrities that are stocked on bookstore shelves.
Kathie Lee Gifford’s Party Animals is a story about a goose who is planning hr own birthday party, but feels that all the other farm animals have too many flaws to be invited. The Wise Old Owl convinces her to invite them all anyway, because it will just make for a better party. I have to wonder if this is typical of planning a Hollywood party. You might not want to invite Lindsay Lohan, but it sure would make the party more interesting. Just a thought.
Presenting Tallulah by Tori Spelling is about a little girl who doesn’t fit in with the rest of her classmates. They just don’t understand her diamond jewelry, expensive handbags or the limo that drops her off to school everyday. But it all works out in the end when she finds a rich boy who loves her for her and gets a puppy. Of course…this is absolutely something that every child can relate to. Uh…right.
If Roast Beef Could Fly by Jay Leno is another of the picture books you can purchase, written by celebrities. Apparently, celebrities think that kids will be really excited about seeing a cartoon version of a famous person in a book (even if that celebrity is on way too late for the picture book crowd to even know who he is). This one is probably entirely for a fan of Jay Leno. It’s about a boy who really, really wants a taste of his father’s roast beef, and instead, drops his comb into the mix and it melts, ruining the food in the process. Supposed to be funny? I’m not so sure.
You can see more celebrity picture books right here. Decide for yourself if you’d purchase one.