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At The American Scene , John Schwenkler adds his suggestions to a growing list of bad books, this time in the children’s category. What does he deem worthy of such an ignoble rank? Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree and Chris Van Allsburg’s The Polar Express . Of course, First Things has had a lot to say about The Giving Tree in the past, both good and bad, so don’t automatically take his word for it.

As a matter of fact, we’ve also had a lot to say about children’s books in general—most recently with Joseph Bottum’s survey and critique of the traditional canon.

So, what do you think? When it comes to children’s books, what are the good, the bad, and the ugly?

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