Oliver at the Window

Oliver at the Window by Elizabeth Shreeve, illustrated by Candice Hartsough McDonald

Not only have Oliver’s parents separated, but he has started preschool.  He spends most of the day hugging his stuffed lion and looking out the window watching for one of his parents to come and take him home.  But home isn’t the same either.  He is never quite sure which house he is going to that night.  As the days pass, Oliver gets more involved in his class, painting his mother’s house and drawing his father’s.  By the end of the book, he is able to help a new little girl who is standing by the window and crying.

Shreeve sets a delicate tone with this book that manages to tackle very serious issues without bogging down into didacticism.  In just a few short pages, Oliver experiences real, tangible and believable growth as he works through the changes in his life.  McDonald’s color pencil art is simple and almost child-like.  Both artist and author use Oliver’s lion as a symbol of his growth to great effect. 

Recommended for any child going through changes in their life.  This is a book filled with hope and ringing with honesty.  Appropriate for ages 3-5.

Reviewed from copy received from publisher.  Book will be placed in library collection.