I tend to prefer books which use the city as a backdrop for the action of the story, rather than books which are about a particular city. Yet, I know there is a desire for parents to find books which will introduce famous cities to their children, perhaps hoping that it will instill an appreciation for and curiousity about other places, or a desire to visit other lands.
Tim Egan's Dodsworth easy reader series does a great job of introducing young readers to famous cities but without taking them on a boring walking tour. The delightfully quirky Dodsworth and his stowaway duck sidekick reminded me of a screwball comedy duo. Each humorous book follows the pair on their misadventures through each city. I liked the details Egan slips in, like how everyone on Fifth Avenue is smartly dressed, or how the duck inadvertently creates an impressionist painting in Paris by dancing on his artwork. Currently available are Dodsworth in New York, Dodsworth in Paris, and Dodsworth in London. Dodsworth in Rome is up next (April 2011), and after that...? I vote for Dodsworth in Madrid.
This reminds me, I need to get my passport renewed.
Big Kid says: I can't wait for Dodsworth in Rome!