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YOU ARE ALWAYS LOVED by Madeleine Dean


A Story of Hope

by Madeleine Dean & Harry Cunnane with Chelsea Lin Wallace ; illustrated by Holly Clifton-Brown

Pub Date: Feb. 16th, 2021
ISBN: 978-0-593-30924-7
Publisher: Random House

A little bunny learns to find strength during difficult times.

Co-written (with an assist from Wallace) by Dean, a Democratic Congresswoman from Pennsylvania, and her son, who have felt firsthand the impact of a substance-use disorder, the book expounds on love and resilience. In the sun-drenched first spread, a tiny rabbit and presumed parent figure cuddle together. “Sometimes you look around, and everything is bright and feels like love.” But then a storm blows through the forest, and the flop-eared tot is left alone. (The larger rabbit is seen hopping away, not turning back—a piercing image of abandonment.) Other woodland creatures appear, helping the bunny on a journey of self-discovery. “When you can’t stop the lightning or calm the crashing thunder, you can look inside your heart, where there’s hope.” An owl gives a ride over a swirling river: “Hope is a friend helping you soar above rough waters.” A deer helps the bunny up a steep slope: “Hope is a friend carrying you up mountains too hard to climb.” The rabbit pair is reunited when the storm passes, with the reassurance that love is always present. An author’s note lightly touches on Cunnane’s experience with addiction but acknowledges that difficult emotions are a part of everyone’s life in many different ways. (This book was reviewed digitally with 11-by-18-inch double-page spreads viewed at 23.6% of actual size.)

A gentle reminder when a bright spot is needed.

(Picture book. 3-7)