This love letter of a book from parent to child includes lovely photographs of carefully arranged and painted rocks, but an uninspired text falls short of its original artistic conceit.
An absence of story hinders the book, which excludes character depictions, though an opening shot of a big, red, heart-shaped rock beside a smaller one suggests a parent and child. This picture is followed by a parental voice describing the everyday moments that inspire love, juxtaposed with painted and arranged rock tableaux. For example, a stone painted like the sun precedes text on the next page that says that the parent loves the child when “the first rays of sun light up the early morning sky.” Although the child’s voice had previously asked, “Do you think of me during the day?” it’s unclear whether the child and parent are together or separate at this point, and at many others, throughout the book. The message of parental love is sweet and heartfelt, and the pictures are quite pretty. The sum of the parts, though, ultimately seems less like a picture book to be shared by the sort of parent and child whose voices emerge in the text and more like a gift book or a catalog of photographs to inspire readers to paint and arrange their own rocks.
Artistically inspirational, if not inspired itself. (Picture book. 3-8)