I have always loved Audrey Penn’s The Kissing Hand, it was one of the books that I read over and over again to my daughter when she was around five years old. It was with great delight that I discovered that it has a sequel as I was browsing through Netgalley in my Kindle a month ago. I immediately requested the publisher to provide me with a copy. As per usual, I had ‘issues’ with the e-copy as the way the e-book appears on the Kindle leaves much to be desired (see my post here). Imagine my glee then when I discovered a copy of the book lying unloved at Savers in Las Vegas (click here for my post about that book-hunting-expedition).
Little Chester’s Teeny-Tiny Wish. I smiled as soon as I read the first page from the book:
Chester Raccoon sat in the hollow of a tree stump and pouted. “Please, can we give him back?” he asked his mother. “I’ll be really, really good if we can give him back.”
You guessed right, Chester is alluding to his baby brother. This book is perfect for children who are expecting a sibling anytime soon, or already dealing with their ‘annoying,’ ‘pesky’ little sister or brother who would read their books, play with their toys, and essentially act like an adoring little nuisance with puppy dog eyes and the cutest-smile-ever.
Mother’s Love that Covers the Entire Universe (and Beyond). What I loved about this book, apart from the glorious illustrations and the deceptively-simple storyline is how Mommy Raccoon very gently enfolds both Chester and Little Ronny in her wise and patient voice that explains how a mother’s love never runs out and that there is plenty enough streams and rivers and toys to play with. It is also a quiet reminder to busy, distracted, hypervigilant mothers to breathe and be sensitive to their children’s tiny hurts and seemingly-minor-grievances (which in truth means the world to them).
Things get a little dicey when Chester saw Mother giving Little Ronny her “kissing hand.” You can just imagine Chester’s heartbreak and sense of betrayal as he sees this. How Mommy Raccoon managed to appease Chester and make him feel like the most beloved-raccoon-ever despite this, I shall leave for you to discover. The book is truly a celebration of warm love that sprinkles pocket full of kisses (and sparkling stars and the moon and the sun) all wrapped in a mother’s embrace.
A Pocket Full of Kisses by Audrey Penn and Illustrated by Barbara Leonard Gibson. Scholastic Inc, 2004. E-copy provided by the publisher through Netgalley while I bought my own physical copy. Book photos were taken by me.