Make Way for Ducklings is Robert McCloskey’s most famous children’s book. If you’ve never read it, you and your children will love it. The story is sweet – about a mother duck shepherding her ducklings through Boston to reach a pond. But what really makes Make Way for Ducklings stand out are the beautiful illustrations. McCloskey spent several months watch and sketching ducks and ducklings before illustrating his book, and the effort shows. The illustrations are very realistic, even though they’re black and white, and McCloskley faithfully represented Boston’s geography and landmarks.
But if Make Way for Ducklings is the only McCloskey book you’ve read, you are missing out. McCloskey wrote a number of children’s books, from picture books for toddlers and preschoolers (like Make Way for Ducklings and Blueberries for Sal) to books for elementary students (like Homer Price).
My children have enjoyed every one of McCloskey’s books, but I think their current favorites are the ones about Homer Price. This boy finds himself in all sorts of interesting predicaments – I think my favorite is the doughnut-making machine that won’t quit making doughnuts. Even my middle-schoolers read and re-read Homer Price.
Every McCloskey book I’ve read is a gem.