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Monday, April 27, 2015

Peace is an Offering, written by Annette Le Box and illustrated by Stephanie Graegin. Dial, Penguin. $18.99 ages 4 and up

"Peace is gratitude
for simple things.
Light through a leaf,
a dragonfly's wings.
A kiss on the cheek,
raindrops and dew.
A walk in the park,
a bowl of hot stew."
This is a truly beautiful book and is meant to be shared daily, I think. There is so much in our world that overwhelms us. Too often the news makes us want to go back to bed and read something uplifting. This is just the book for that. It is read quickly but inspires at every turn.

It is a poem that quietly fills the reader with hope. It states simply that, although the world may seem too big, too brutal, too sad, too demanding, there are things that each one of us can do to make it a better place. In our own small ways, we can make a difference by helping those who need our help, by spreading our own joy to others, by doing little things that are big to others, by appreciating what is there, not wishing for what is not. We can find peace in the truly wonderful people and events that are part of our days.

"Peace is the words you say to a brother.
Will you stay with me?
Will you be my friend?
Will you listen to my story
till the very end?"

The lovely artwork is fashioned in pencil and watercolor, before being assembled and digitally colored. Each page is a gift. The intense colors, the detailed constructions, the diversity of the characters and the tranquil, detailed scenes are sure to inspire shared stories of happy, helpful times and encourage children to find some peace in their own worlds. A winning addition to any book shelf.

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