Top Five Picture Books of 2012 to Read Before You Go to Sleep 
submitted by Natalie

1. Black Dog by Levi Pinfold

Iím absolutely smitten with a very brave and impish girl named Small, who on the cover of this enchanting book stands in comparison to a very large paw print embedded in snow. To say that the print is large would be a misnomer. Itís enormous, and if you flip through the pages you will eventually get a glimpse of its creator, a magical black dog who seems to terrorize everyone in the Hope familyÖexcept Small.

2. The Three Ninja Pigs by Corey Rosen Schwartz

This fractured fairy tale will have mass appeal for the 8 and under set. Itís got martial arts and a female hero. There are good guys and bad guys and if thatís not enough a killer rhyme scheme. The street smart text just begs to be read with a little sass. Did I mention thereís loads of action illustrated through quality digital animation style artwork as well as a great moral demonstrating that hard work pays off? Thereís that too.

3. Z is for Moose by Kelly L. Bingham

Moose is pushy, impatient, and a little unstable but somehow I ended up finding the self-proclaimed star of this alphabet book endearing. Donít miss the tantrums of poor Moose who just canít wait for his turn to shine.

4. Creepy Carrots! by Aaron Reynolds

This is a perfect story for a younger child who begs to be read scary stories. It may even entice them to eat a carrot or two themselves.

5. Big Mean Mike by Michelle Knudsen

Big Mean Mike is all that his name advertises. Heís into monster truck shows, stomping in his big black boots, and wearing a lot of leather. One day while driving his (big mean) hot rod, Mike encounters some tiny fluffy bunnies that cause him to expand his view of himself regardless of what people think of him.

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