Apparently, the Spot books are quite popular among preschoolers, despite the fact that they are low on action and plot. Some examples of Spot plots: Spot goes on a picnic. It rains. Spot comes home. Or: Spot goes to a fair with his grandparents. It is fun. They come home. Or: Spot's room gets messy. His mom tells him to clean it. He cleans it.
Every night before bed, WCK would insist that I read one Spot story, and then she'd ask Daddy to read one Spot story. WCK looooooved the Spot stories. Jay and I grew to hate them. Obsessively. Sometimes we'd lie in bed at night, complaining to each other about the Spot stories. Like, why is the mother dog bigger than the hippo? Why is Spot called Spot, but his friends get regular names, like Steve? Why are all of the animals "human" (they drive fire trucks, they play tubas, they go into the hospital for x-rays), except for Spot's grandparents' pet cat, who is just a regular cat?
"Why are Spot's parents always referred to by their first names instead of 'Mom' or 'Dad'?" Jay would always say. "I HATE THAT!"
I'm happy to say that the Spot book was returned to the library this morning. WCK seemed to understand that it needed to go back, and she hasn't complained. Jay and I can go back to our happy, pre-Spot lives, but I think the emotional scars will always be there.