What is your favorite book that you’ve read?

I read quite often and many of the books that I adored as a kid have shaped the types of books that I am making today.

This can be a long and ever-changing list for me. But, here are some all-time favorites:

Peter Pan and Wendy—J.M. Barrie’s classic has surly pirates, bloodthirsty native Americans, a hungry crocodile, feisty faeries and flying kids with weapons…what more could you ask for?

Watership Down—Richard Adams takes you on an incredible quest from a home colony that’s completely eradicated to Shangri-La. One the way, there are monsters, villains, allies, oh, and a fascist leader trying to seize the hero’s new home…and its all told with rabbits. You read that right…rabbits.

The Mouse and The Motorcycle—Mouse buddy + toy motorcycle = Awesome!

The Lorax—In my mind, this one of Dr. Seuss’s undisputed classics. Sadly, we need the Lorax now more than ever.

Lafcadio: The Lion That Shot Back—One of Shel Silverstein’s lesser known titles, but one of my all-time favorites. Actually, I learned about this one when my younger brother read it for school and had me help with his book report. It is one of those stories that you will always remember.

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Never Abandon Imagination Tony DiTerlizzi: Never abandon imagination.

Imagination is a world of possibility that exists within each of us. It is what makes us uniquely human. It is our creative fingerprint that touches and influences the world around us. Imagination is essential to art and science; to innovation and prosperity. It gives us hope, calls us to action and leads to change.

Whether it’s fairies, dragons, robots or aliens, all of my children’s book characters are siblings born of my imagination – an imagination strengthened through years of encouragement from family, teachers and friends. While so many others abandoned it during their transition from childhood to adulthood, I fiercely held onto mine, hoping for a day when I could share it to inspire the next generation of dreamers. Innovators. World changers.

Imagination empowers us to envision and create a reality of what could be. We must hold it dear, foster it and never abandon it.