Throughout the story, the father-son interaction is heart-felt and genuine. For example, when praying for someone who is sick, Isaac stops to ask, “Do you remember when I was sick? Did you pray for me?” His father answers, “I always pray for you, Isaac.” When praying for the homeless, Isaac speculates about when they pray. His father responds, “I suppose you can pray anytime, really. Anywhere.” And when his father questions Isaac about praying about the toys he wants, Isaac says, “God is my friend, so I just thought I’d say what’s on my mind.”
The story isn’t action packed, nor is there a nail-biting problem to overcome. However, it holds a warm, cozy appeal. The father shows gentle wisdom, and the child shows how much he cares about other people. The bright, colorful illustrations (done by Steve Johnson and Lou Francher) fit the story nicely and depict various ethnic races. They are a combination of acrylic painting and collage. Each page has a black-and-white checkerboard edging from the quilt on the boy’s bed. The quilt flows softly in the background, reflecting the thoughts and questions of the boy. Meanwhile, the checkerboard border provides unity to the book, anchoring the reader in the boy’s bedroom even while we see him reliving moments of his day. In all, the pictures give the story a dreamy feel.
What I Dislike: Nothing. It’s a nice story with a drowsy, bedtime feel… probably exactly what the author intended.
Overall Rating: Excellent
Age Appeal: ages 4-7
Publisher Info: Atheneum, 2009; ISBN:1416948562; Hardcover, 32 pgs., $16.99
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