Ivy Loves to Give by Freya Blackwood
Ivy is a little girl who loves to give gifts. She gives a snail a shoe, glasses to the dog, tea to the hen, and a pacifier to the cat. Wait, that doesn’t feel right. Sometimes she does get it all right. The baby gets his pacifier. Her mother gets her tea, now with an egg in the cup. Her grandmother gets the glasses. Her father gets his shoe. But there is one thing that Ivy doesn’t want to give away, even though it’s not hers to keep. But she has just the right gift to say thank you for something given to her.
Blackwood keeps this book short and very sweet. Her brief lines of text are ideal for toddlers who will understand both the love of gifting and the love of keeping all wrapped up together. While the concept of the book is simple and will have children laughing at the mix-ups, Blackwood nicely ties the end together with something a bit more complicated. Handled very successfully, the topic of giving and taking is secondary to the family relationships we see at work in the book.
Blackwood’s art is done in pencil and watercolor, giving it a beautiful softness. The layout of the book is done with attention to the way it will read, offering plenty of white space beyond that needed for the words themselves. This expansive feel makes the book feel welcoming and warm. Her colors are vibrant and work to create illustrations that will function well with a group.
A solid choice for toddlers, this book is appropriate for ages 1-4.
Reviewed from copy received from Scholastic.
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