Total Pageviews

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Penny and Her Song, written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes. Greenwillow, Harper. 2012. $14.99 ages 4 and up

"So, Penny went to her room
 and shut the door.
Penny started to sing,
"One is nice, two is nice,
three is even better..."
Penny stopped.
She wanted someone
to listen to her."

I don't know how he does it; but, he does it every time he puts pen to paper and releases a new book. Kevin Henkes creates spot-on personalities for the stories he wants to tell! Add Penny to your list of favorite characters...Chrysanthemum, Owen, Lily, Bailey, Sheila Rae and Wendell...from this creative and warm-hearted man.

When Penny gets home from school, she is full of joy and ready to share her new song. She gets right to it! Her mother is concerned that Penny might waken the babies. Off she goes to find her father and is dismayed to discover that he has the same concern. Penny is a bit put out by their reaction, and retreats to her bedroom to sing it to herself, and to her collection of captive glass animals. Neither satisfies her need to share. Other pursuits distract her and she almost forgets her song. End of chapter one...

This astute author is totally in tune with young readers longing to start reading their own early chapter book. So, he stops there, takes a breath and moves on to chapter two...fade to the dinner table where singing is not allowed. Penny knows the rules and appears nonplussed by the wait. Once the meal has ended, all attention turns to Penny and her song. Mama and Papa listen to the whole thing, and then they listen again.

As loving parents are wont to do, they listen with respect for their daughter. Soon, they join her:

"Mama sang high and softly.
Papa sang low and loudly.
Penny sang in the middle
and clearly.
The babies sang
in their own baby way."

Bliss...and perfection!
Thank you, Kevin Henkes. 

No comments:

Post a Comment