This lyrical picture book will draw readers under its soft wing, lulling children with its velveteen artwork and assured...

YOU BELONG HERE

A narrator whispers sweet assurances of belonging in the ear of a beloved, invoking animals’ analogous habitats and hollows to bring the comforting ascriptions powerfully home.

Watercolor illustrations utilize every gradation of gray to achieve astonishing, soft specificity and alternatively show human houses and animal homes in the natural world. Mellow reds, greens, and yellows crop up here and there, serving as keen testaments to the power of placement in the scenes they depict. Lovingly constructed, reliable rhymes, with pleasing pendular swings, might cause listeners to hug themselves tightly and smile. “And the trees belong in the wild wood / and the deer belong in their shade, / and the birds belong so safe and good / and warm in the nests they’ve made.” Animals enjoy habitations all their own, sublime places described with crystalline clarity: streams skirted with cattails, red and gold desert rocks, canyons blanketed with sage, dune grasses, and a stone wall surrounded by clover. Cursive script (intrinsically personal and unique) accompanies lines directed at a listening human audience and images of human houses. One could easily improvise a quick melody and sing these words as a lullaby.

This lyrical picture book will draw readers under its soft wing, lulling children with its velveteen artwork and assured affirmations of each creature’s special nook in such a spectacularly varied world. (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: June 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-938298-99-8

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Compendium

Review Posted Online: March 30, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2016

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More gift book than storybook, this is a meaningful addition to nursery bookshelves

MAYBE

A young child explores the unlimited potential inherent in all humans.

“Have you ever wondered why you are here?” asks the second-person narration. There is no one like you. Maybe you’re here to make a difference with your uniqueness; maybe you will speak for those who can’t or use your gifts to shine a light into the darkness. The no-frills, unrhymed narrative encourages readers to follow their hearts and tap into their limitless potential to be anything and do anything. The precisely inked and colored artwork plays with perspective from the first double-page spread, in which the child contemplates a mountain (or maybe an iceberg) in their hands. Later, they stand on a ladder to place white spots on tall, red mushrooms. The oversized flora and fauna seem to symbolize the presumptively insurmountable, reinforcing the book’s message that anything is possible. This quiet read, with its sophisticated central question, encourages children to reach for their untapped potential while reminding them it won’t be easy—they will make messes and mistakes—but the magic within can help overcome falls and failures. It’s unlikely that members of the intended audience have begun to wonder about their life’s purpose, but this life-affirming mood piece has honorable intentions. The child, accompanied by an adorable piglet and sporting overalls and a bird-beaked cap made of leaves, presents white.

More gift book than storybook, this is a meaningful addition to nursery bookshelves . (Picture book. 2-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-946873-75-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Compendium

Review Posted Online: May 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2019

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UMBRELLA

Momo longed to carry the blue umbrella and wear the bright red rubber boots she had been given on her third birthday. But day after day Indian summer continued. Momo tried to tell mother she needed to carry the umbrella to nursery school because the sunshine bothered her eyes. But Mother didn't let her use the umbrella then or when she said the wind bothered her. At last, though, rain fell on the city pavements and Momo carried her umbrella and wore her red boots to school. One feels the urgency of Momo's wish. The pictures are full of the city's moods and the child's joy in a rainy day.

Pub Date: March 1, 1958

ISBN: 978-0-14-050240-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Dec. 9, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1958

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