Where would you like to live? Just imagine….
Ten fanciful four-line poems each imagine a different kind of home, one per double-page spread. “Build me an ice palace” imagines a dancing bear, a polite penguin serving refreshments, and a tall staircase with a curving banister suitable for sliding down. The imagined “library” has “a roof made of glass” so that children can lie on the floor and read all day and at night “watch stars shooting past.” The castle has a big golden tower, and “We’ll have a pet dragon… / To scare off passersby.” Many different faces (human and animal) peer out of the square windows of the skyscraper, where “We’ll play hide-and-seek, / Behind all the doors.” A cat sits behind the controls of the big submarine (yellow, natch), “With gadgets galore.” The rocket features beds that can fly. Ultimately, the nicest home of all is a simple house, with room for everyone: “We’ll all live together— / That’s the best home of all.” A final long (two-page) verse suggests numerous ways to play at house-building with makeshift components such as chairs, an umbrella, cushions, or a blanket. Bannister’s repeated invocation, “Build me a…” sets a lovely dreaming tone. Sanfelippo’s illustrations are appropriately busy and colorful, cheerfully populated with diverse humans and animals, but some of the architectural features mentioned are not particularly well-realized.
Engaging as well as a nice springboard for creative play. (Picture book. 4-7)