I Wonder by K. A. Holt, illustrated by Kenard Pak (9781524714222)
From waking up to finally going to bed, the day is filled with questions. There are questions about whether the sun is really a kite. Do tires get tired? What are boy ladybugs called? Where are the unicorns? Could your belly button hold a galaxy? How do shadows work? Are toys lonely or sad? Do trees dream? One after another the questions are asked and left unanswered for the reader to think about and ponder. The book ends with children being reminded that they wonder because they are wonderful.
Holt’s text is a series of marvelous questions that really get readers thinking about wild possibilities in the world. If you are sharing this book aloud, expect conversations about the questions, some of which could lead to great discussions about fascinating topics. It is also a great book to read and quietly think deep thoughts on your own too. Pak’s illustrations are filled with a diverse cast of characters. The images are ethereal. They are also beautifully structured with curves of road, bubbles in water, and the night sky all featured in the course of the book.
A book to marvel at and wonder with. Appropriate for ages 3-5.
Reviewed from e-galley provided by Random House.
Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala by Meenal Patel (9781643439556)
Priya lives with her family in the United States. Her’s is the only house in her neighborhood where an Indian family lives. Priya loves to help her grandmother make rotli for dinner when she gets home. As they make the flatbread, her Babi Ba tells her about India’s spice markets, the architecture, the noises of the traffic, and the monsoon rains. Their house has marigolds strung over the door just like those in India. Priya longs to see India for herself. When winter comes, Babi Ba doesn’t hang marigolds outside any more. Priya has an idea and soon her entire class is helping her make paper marigolds as she tells them about India.
Patel, who is Indian-American, tells a story that focuses on a family’s continued connection to their heritage while living in the United States. Priya is proud of her Indian heritage, loving to hear stories about India and its sounds and sights. Still, there is a sense of distance between her own heritage and the society around her, one that can be bridged by sharing stories. The art in the book is rich will the colors of spices. Deep greens and warm pinks add to the color palette too.
A celebration of Indian heritage and the strength of family. Appropriate for ages 4-6.
Reviewed from library copy.