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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Without You, written and illustrated by Genevieve Cote. Kids Can Press, 2011. $16.95 ages 3 and up

You're going too fast!

Step back!
This is a racing track!"

Can you guess by looking closely at the front cover what this book has as its focus? Have you met Rabbit and Pig in a previous book? I hope so...I met them first in the companion book to this one...Me and You (Kids Can, 2009).  They were wonderful then, and they are equally wonderful now. In fact, they are best friends!

In the tale they help their young audience understand what can happen, even in the best of friendships. It takes two to make that special bond work. It is a difficult lesson to learn.

Their story begins in conflict. Rabbit thinks that Pig is pulling the wagon too fast, while Pig is delighting in the race. Rabbit complains about carelessness and Pig responds with a line about fussiness. It isn't long until hard feelings cause a rift and result in a parting of the ways.

With courage and confidence, they separate for better times alone. There are so many things to be done without companionship and concern over the other's feelings:

"I can play dress-up without you.
I can go to the park without you."

At midpoint they seem to have a change of heart:

"But my book is funnier
when I read it to you!"

Isn't that the truth? Everything's better with friends. I know it, and you know it. Now, Rabbit and Pig know it, too!

Charming, spirited and oh, so perfect for little ones and early readers. It won't take any time until they are reading it on their own!

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