Fresh off the presses, a beautiful green book is sent to a busy library, quickly devoured by adoring young readers. The book is happy to be checked out often and loved by so many children. Time goes by, and newer books take its place. Gradually, it gathers dust and is taken out less and less often. Then, one day, when it thought it has been abandoned, a little girl named Alice discovers it where it has been left carelessly on the floor. It’s love at first sight for the little girl, and she takes the book everywhere. Once again, the book is happy and content.
But when Alice, in a moment of forgetfulness, neglects to renew the lonely book, it is again relegated to a dusty shelf. One afternoon, it is laid out in the sunshine with other volumes at the library book sale. No one seems to want the old, fragile book with the faded green cover. Just as the skies darken and rain begins to shower, the book hears a familiar voice. Alice has returned at last, and this time she’s taking the lonely book home for good! Finally, the book has a forever home where it will be loved and cherished.
Maybe it’s my childhood love of Corduroy that drew me to this delightful little story about a forlorn, forgotten little soul. Or maybe it’s just my general love of a good book. But one thing’s for sure–The Lonely Book is simple and wonderful, with a sort of comforting nostalgia that’s especially charming. Kate Bernheimer’s tale feels like a classic, and Chris Sheban’s illustrations are soft and full of glowing light. Seriously, seriously beautiful.
You don’t want to miss out on this lovely read aloud story. Cuddle up with your little one in our storytime corner and see for yourself!
The Lonely Book by Kate Bernheimer, illus. by Chris Sheban; Schwartz & Wade (Random House); 17.99; Ages 3-7