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November 2018


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Recommended by Melinda at Kendale Lakes Branch

The Very Fairy Princess: Attitude of Gratitude
Written by Julie Andrews and Emma Walton Hamilton; illustrated by Christine Davenier

Little girl in fairy costume showing a painting of a cornucopia

Gerry, the very fairy princess, goes to school on Gratitude Day with her donations for the school’s food drive. However, things do not go as planned: Her donations get damaged, a fire drill steals some of her sparkles and her painting is hung upside down, so instead of a cornucopia it looks like a clown! Her attitude of gratitude suffers greatly, and Gerry has a very non‑fairy princess‑like crying fit. But when Gerry’s teacher notes her cleverness in creating a two‑in‑one painting, the little girl discovers that a compliment can go a long way toward helping you see things in a different light. Gerry takes this attitude of gratitude home and shares it around the dinner table with her family.

Julie Andrews and Emma Walton Hamilton have written a realistic story depicting the potential ups and downs of a school day. It culminates in Gerry’s dinner conversation, where she links the good and bad together to show how her attitude of gratitude affected her outlook on things. Christine Davenier illustrates this tale with ink and color pencils, using soft lines and imprecise yet delicate shadings. The detail in the characters’ faces makes their emotions clear.

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Thank You Bees
Written and illustrated by Toni Yuly

Flat illustration of honey bees hovering over a flower

A heartfelt book that connects the natural world to the things we gain from it and offers thanks. From the sun and its light to the clouds and their rain, from the dirt and its plants to the trees and their wood, a young child appreciates the world’s gifts and offers thanks.

Toni Yuly’s sweet book possesses great depth that shows children the importance of the natural world and how to be thankful. Her illustrations comprise ink, tissue fabric, wood and digital collage, and the pictures appear to jump right off the page under your fingers.

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Bear Says Thanks
Written by Karma Wilson; illustrated by Jane Chapman

A bear telling stories surrounded by various small animals

Bear is bored sitting home alone in his cave and hopes to throw a feast for his friends to keep him entertained. His friends arrive with food and Bear gives everyone a heartfelt “Thanks!” but feels guilty because he has no food to give. His friends say that he can offer his stories instead, and then they all have something to be thankful for.

This strong entry in Karma Wilson’s Bear Books series shows good friends getting together for a meal and giving thanks for all that they share. Jane Chapman provides detailed drawings that strongly convey all the animal characters’ emotions. The colors are warm and comforting, and beautifully mirror the text.

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Splat Says Thank You!
Written and illustrated by Rob Scotton

Cartoon cat holding a mouse in one paw and a book in the other

Splat is worried about his friend Seymour, because he is sick in bed. Splat decides to cheer Seymour up by making him a Friendship Book, which lists all of the ways that Seymour has helped Splat and how grateful Splat was, each and every time. Seymour and Splat read about how Seymour helped Splat with the school play, got him out of trouble and cheered him up when he was sick. Splat keeps thanking Seymour for all of these things until Seymour starts to feel better and smiles.

Rob Scotton’s story of one friend thanking another for all of the things that they do for one another in their friendship is a charming lesson on gratitude and appreciation. The digital art is very detailed, showing individual hairs on the characters. Emotions are bright and clear. Pages alternate between contained, framed drawings and ones that flow all of the way to edge of the page.

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The Thankful Book
Written and illustrated by Todd Parr

Brightly Colored Framed Cartoon Family Portrait

There are so many things to be thankful for in your daily life. Can you think of some? Vacations, walks, pets and hugs are just a few.

Todd Parr’s book is about the simple joys of life, expressed using the repetitive refrain, “I am thankful for…” His illustrations encompass bright and colorful stick figures and animals that complement the plain text. An interesting end note reiterates the pleasure of being thankful every day.

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