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Saturday, September 8, 2012

Wishes, written by Jean Little and illustrated by Genevieve Cote. North Winds Press, Scholastic. 2012. $19.99 ages 3 and up

"If wishes were puppies,
my brother would get
a puppy named Snug
for his personal pet."

It begins with a familiar, to me, refrain:

"If wishes were horses,
then poor folk would ride."

I think our mom must have used that on us when we were wishing for things we were not likely to get...a dog, new skates, the same supper as one of the neighbor kids! That's the memory it evokes for me today.

Jean Little uses that starting refrain and then expands on it to include many lovely sentiments concerning family and friends, and the things they like to do together. It has a soft, gentle feeling  of gratitude for what we have and for the simpler things in life...those things that bring joy and are within reach. Some are funny:

"If wishes were pancakes,
I'd eat a tall stack.

If wishes were parsnips,
I'd send the plate back."

Genevieve Cote adds to the soft, gentle tone of the verses with her mixed media artwork. Her children are smiling, rosy-cheeked cherubs who spend their days together, doing what they love to do. They are imaginative, joyful and dreamy!

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