The Curious Appeal of Curious George

This is George. He was a good little monkey and always very curious.

These words are emblazoned in my brain as I've read Curious George books to my kids hundreds, if not thousands, of times.

There are so many great kids books to read but something keeps bringing me back to Curious George. Many books I find painful to read after awhile, but not Curious George.

Maybe it is the predictable storyline of the books:

  • George goes out on some type of excursion, usually with the Man with the Yellow Hat.
  • The Man with the Yellow Hat leaves George to go do something, like run an errand.
  • George finds something interesting and he becomes curious.
  • George's curiosity causes him to do something that he shouldn't be doing.
  • As a result, George causes a problem and he gets into trouble.
  • George redeems himself by resolving the problem he caused or another problem.
  • George is rewarded. And about that same time, the Man with the Yellow Hat is back.

Other books have predictable patterns too, yet reading them tire me. I'm curious. What draws me to Curious George books? They don't have rhymes, they are predictable, no fancy words like Dr. Seuss. Curious George books are easy to read with simple, yet fun, colorful and thoughful illustrations.

More On Curious George

Husband and wife team H.A. and Margret Rey teamed up on the 7 original Curious George books, with H.A. involved in ideas/illustrations and Margret :

  • Curious George (1941)
  • Curious George Takes a Job (1947)
  • Curious George Rides a Bike (1952)
  • Curious George Gets a Medal (1957)
  • Curious George Flies a Kite (1958)
  • Curious George Learns the Alphabet (1963)
  • Curious George Goes to the Hospital (1966)

But Curious George originated from the Reys' 1939 book published in France, Cecily G. and the Nine Monkeys. Cecily G. is a giraffe who befriends the monkeys, one of which is named FiFi. Two years later Fifi became Curious George and the rest is history.

The Reys wrote only 7 Curious George books in 25 years but dozens have been spawned from those original classics. It will not surprise me in the least if I'm reading Curious George to my grandkids.