I've noticed that children and adults often see movies or books completely differently. I'm thinking of a time when the adults felt that playground games at the elementary school had gotten out of hand; children were playing "predator". Where did they learn it? Parents in this community are very careful about what they let their children watch on t.v. It turns out that children had been watching nature shows on public television--which featured a lot of predatory animals.
Sometimes children will ask me to read again and again books that no trade book publisher would even look at. A friend self published a book about her dog, Cap, as a fundraiser. Her mother illustrated it with paintings most third graders would be proud of, and the cover featured a photo of the dog. My preschoolers loved it! Why? The cover and text convinced them it was about a real dog, a friendly dog they might someday meet, and the illustrations were just fine.
The bookstore kids, Amelia (almost 9) and Peobe (5) love a book their mother, the owner, found too amaturish to carry: I Love You More, by Laura Duksta and illustrated by Karen Keesler. Amelia said "I like it that it says 'I love you more than' so many things." Was it the repetition? Or more likely that the book really made Amelia feel loved. Perhaps she identified with the child who was being so loved.