Thursday, February 11, 2010
Valentine's Day Reading
Henry In Love
By Peter McCarty
Balzer & Bray (HarperCollins)
Published in late 2009, Henry in Love is one of my new favorite picture books, particularly for this time of the year.
Simple sentences, usually one or two per page spread, introduce Henry the cat and his crush on Chloe the rabbit, the “loveliest girl in his class.” This sweet, gentle story of childhood crushes is complete with flirtation by cartwheels and somersaults, snack exchanges, and the anticipation of new seat assignments.
What really had me swooning however, are the illustrations. Each anthropomorphized character is depicted in a realistic meets modern fashion, resulting in the perfect level of cuteness. The use of shading with dark hues to create a furry effect, combined with pops of bright color set against an otherwise sparse background makes for a sophisticated visual experience that still offers wide appeal.
This book would be an excellent early elementary read aloud for Valentine's Day. In my community parents are very interested in exposing their children to American holidays and I never have complaints about sharing such titles. For more sensitive communities, this book never distinctly mentions Valentine's Day, rather young love is the focus.