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by Elisa Kleven & illustrated by Elisa Kleven

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-525-42374-4
Publisher: Dutton

Dreams of angels help the new dog in the neighborhood make friends.

Amiable Farley, the new dog, wants to meet a new friend, but pig, bear and bird are all too busy. Farley decides to work on painting and gardening but this only satisfies for a while—he is “still lonely.” When night falls, Farley climbs into bed with a mournful, “I wish I had a friend.” In an obvious dream, a “sparkly, swirly, and bright as a star” angel appears. Farley and the angel share pancakes, play, sing and dance together. But morning comes, and the angel disappears. When Farley goes outside to find his angel, the other animals learn about the dream and try to help bring her back. Somewhat predictably, they end up sharing pancakes, playing ball, dancing and singing. And so the friendship-building process begins. Kleven’s collage illustrations in a cheery, mostly pastel palette capture Farley’s range of emotions and the spirited actions of all the creatures in this gentle tale. Most dramatic is a nighttime scene that shows the starry sky full of the dreamed angels of each of the new friends.

Although it may not be eventful enough for the masses, this quiet story could be just right for a preschooler who is about to begin school, has just moved or is shy about meeting new peers. (Picture book. 3-6)