Knit a hat and love thy neighbor

A HAT FOR MRS. GOLDMAN

A STORY ABOUT KNITTING AND LOVE

Intergenerational and neighborly love fills every page.

Mrs. Goldman, a white, Jewish woman, has always loved her Latina next-door neighbor, Sophia. She knit baby hats for her and still knits for all her neighbors. Sophia helps by making the pom-poms. “Keeping keppies warm is our mitzvah,” Mrs. Goldman tells her, explaining that a “keppie” (Yiddish) is a head and a “mitzvah” (Hebrew) is a good deed. But Sophia worries that her friend is so busy knitting for others that she leaves her own head too cold. Sophia wants to make a hat for Mrs. Goldman and finally succeeds after much frustration and many dropped stitches, tossing her needles into the air in a moment of triumph—almost. The hat is just not at all pretty, but many pom-poms will surely help…and the gift is delivered, complete with 20 pom-poms. Edwards’ story radiates warmth and coziness and is a delight to share. Karas, who learned to knit for this book, uses softly toned mixed media to showcase the wonderful affection between the little girl and the old lady. His endpapers are a swatch of garter stitches, uneven and dropped. Instructions for knitting the hat and decorating it are included, and every beginning (and experienced) knitter will find it a perfect project.

Knit a hat and love thy neighbor . (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 11, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-553-49710-6

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Schwartz & Wade/Random

Review Posted Online: June 28, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2016

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Safe to creep on by.

LOVE FROM THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR

Carle’s famous caterpillar expresses its love.

In three sentences that stretch out over most of the book’s 32 pages, the (here, at least) not-so-ravenous larva first describes the object of its love, then describes how that loved one makes it feel before concluding, “That’s why… / I[heart]U.” There is little original in either visual or textual content, much of it mined from The Very Hungry Caterpillar. “You are… / …so sweet,” proclaims the caterpillar as it crawls through the hole it’s munched in a strawberry; “…the cherry on my cake,” it says as it perches on the familiar square of chocolate cake; “…the apple of my eye,” it announces as it emerges from an apple. Images familiar from other works join the smiling sun that shone down on the caterpillar as it delivers assurances that “you make… / …the sun shine brighter / …the stars sparkle,” and so on. The book is small, only 7 inches high and 5 ¾ inches across when closed—probably not coincidentally about the size of a greeting card. While generations of children have grown up with the ravenous caterpillar, this collection of Carle imagery and platitudinous sentiment has little of his classic’s charm. The melding of Carle’s caterpillar with Robert Indiana’s iconic LOVE on the book’s cover, alas, draws further attention to its derivative nature.

Safe to creep on by. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: Dec. 15, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-448-48932-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: Feb. 2, 2021

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A winning tale about finding new friends.

FOUND

Bear finds a wonderful toy.

Bear clearly loves the toy bunny that he has found sitting up against a tree in the forest, but he wants to help it return to its home. With a wagon full of fliers and the bunny secure in Bear’s backpack, he festoons the trees with posters and checks out a bulletin board filled with lost and found objects (some of which will bring a chuckle to adult readers). Alas, he returns home still worried about bunny. The following day, they happily play together and ride Bear’s tricycle. Into the cozy little picture steps Moose, who immediately recognizes his bunny, named Floppy. Bear has a tear in his eye as he watches Moose and Floppy hug. But Moose, wearing a tie, is clearly grown and knows that it is time to share and that Bear will take very good care of his Floppy. Yoon’s story is sweet without being sentimental. She uses digitized artwork in saturated colors to create a lovely little world for her animals. They are outlined in strong black lines and stand out against the yellows, blues, greens and oranges of the background. She also uses space to great effect, allowing readers to feel the emotional tug of the story.

A winning tale about finding new friends. (Picture book. 3-6)

Pub Date: April 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-8027-3559-1

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Review Posted Online: Feb. 19, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2014

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