After a small girl gives a boy a valentine, he finds all kinds of ways to show her he cares, but not with a valentine.
The white boy, who sports a red superhero cape and square glasses, knows all about real valentines—they have cursive and lace, cooties fall out when you open them, and they’re glittery and pink and come with roses or jewels or cavity-causing sugary treats. So he is not giving his friend, a taller, black girl with pigtail puffs over her ears, any of those things. Instead, among other things, she gets a handful of dandelions (some of which he’s already used for wishes), a vending-machine ring, his superhero cape, the jelly part of a half of a PB&J he found at the bottom of his lunchbox, a lucky hopscotch rock, and the secret of the second-best hiding spot. Throughout, he proves he is observant about the things she likes. Cummins’ white backgrounds keep the focus on the kids’ interactions and their droll facial expressions. Her cartoon cast is a diverse one, and refreshingly, this is more about deep friendship than romantic love; her kids are definitely just that: kids.
A sort of anti-valentine for those who want to show the ones they love they care without being all mushy (or spending any money). (Picture book. 5-8)