The Duckling’s Guide to Literature

Ever since she learned to say “quack” at about 10 months old, ducks have been far and away D1's favorite animal. A few weeks ago I spotted Make Way for Ducklings at the library and decided to see if she was ready to make the jump from board books. Sure enough, she was willing to sit through the whole story and loved pointing out the ducks. Every time Mrs. Mallard left her nest to get a drink, she wanted one, too. Every time the ducklings waved goodbye to the policemen, she waved along with them.


The next time we went to the library, I happened to spot The Story About Ping. As we left the library, I had my hands full and so did she, so I asked her to follow me like the ducklings follow their mother. Sure enough, she walked right along behind, quacking all the way.


The Story About Ping was an even greater hit, since Ping has uncles, of which D1 also has quite a number. She is distressed when Ping finds that his uncles are all gone, and pleased when he finds them again.


Now she thinks the purpose of going to the library is to find books about ducks. Every day she asks to read “Quack-quack,” and “Quack-quack Uncle.” But I'm about out of ideas for classic picture books about ducks. The Tale of Jemima Puddleduck is the only remaining one that comes to mind.


Besides, I think it's time to expand her literary horizons and pursue a different genre. I think today I'll see if I can get her interested in Corduroy.


5 thoughts on “The Duckling’s Guide to Literature

  1. Both of those are favorites I grew up with! My brother (a man of discerning taste) bought Asrat Make Way for Ducklings for Christmas this year. I’ll have to put a bug in his ear and see if we can get Ping for Asrat’s birthday. šŸ˜€

  2. How about Have You Seen My Duckling by Nancy Tafuri? Also Springtime for Jeanne-Marie features a little French girl with a duck for a pet.

  3. I loved Ping, too. How about the Duck in the Truck books by Jez Alborough? There are 3 or 4 of them, at least. Duck has wonderful intentions but is always messing up everything.

  4. If you want to branch out a little, while staying close to ducks, you might try Petunia, by Roger Duvoisin. It’s about a very silly goose. But it’s hard to beat Make Way for Ducklings, that’s for sure. Thanks for a fun article! Jen (

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