Illustrated by Shane W. Evans. Famed feminist, social critic and author bell hooks brings us a soothing and reassuring rhythmical text that explores the unique and unconditional bond between parents and their child. Shane Evans's whimsical illustrations, featuring an exuberant little girl loving and being loved by her parents in a cosy and secure atmosphere, are the perfect partner for Ms. hooks's words. Ages 4-8.
"PreS. As in Be Boy Buzz [BKL N 1 02], hooks' latest picture book is an elemental celebration of children and African American pride. This time she honors "girlpies," with Evans' bright paintings in saturated colors showing a large-eyed, smiling, African American girl hugging and kissing her loving parents and enjoying quiet time. "There is no all the time right," the girl realizes. "But all the time any hurt can be healed. All wrongs forgiven. And all the world made peace again." hooks' simple messages of unconditional love and safety will reassure children, and kids just learning to puzzle out words will enjoy the oversize, friendly type. But it's Evans' paintings that are most noteworthy, especially a beautiful spread that sings with contentment, joy, and love in which the girl delights in kisses from both parents as she spreads her arms high, ready to soar. --Gillian Engberg"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review:
""My mama calls me girlpie," begins this tender riff on the ties that bind. "Daddy's honey bun chocolate dew drop." When the winsome girl at the story's center breaks a dish ("Everything I do cannot be right. 'Cause there is no all the time right"), her parents are quick to forgive her. Here, the tale makes an abrupt transition, and girlpie is in bed. The book ends with her drifting off to sleep, embraced by the warmth of her family's love ("No need to fear the dark place. 'Cause everywhere is home"). Despite some tender scenes and the exuberance of emotion with which hooks (Be Boy Buzz) invests her poetic prose, the picture book doesn't quite add up to the sum of its parts. Evans' (Osceola: Memories of a Sharecropper's Daughter) illustrations go a long way toward making the moments hang together. Her cheerful, splashy paintings display an abundance of affection between the girl and her parents ("Kiss Kiss" accompanies a girlpie sandwich, the parents' faces flanking their daughter's exuberant face) and, immediately after, Evans conveys the rush of relief at having been forgiven ("Let life go on") with the heroine turning cartwheels in a field of flowers. But it may be difficult for readers to determine a theme: Is it a story about forgiveness? About overcoming fear of the dark? Perhaps the overall message of comfort and safety is enough to carry youngsters along in this upbeat hodgepodge of feel-good phrases and images. Ages 4-8. (Dec.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved