Friday, August 26, 2011

The TTLG 2011 Picture Book Celebration: Book two hundred and thirty-eight

I think it is rather funny how children so often wish they were grownups, and grownups look back on their childhood with nostalgia. We always want what we cannot have. In today's picture book you will meet a little girl who is in a big hurry to grow up. Thankfully there is someone around to remind her that being who she is right now is perfect.

Vanita Oelschlager
Illustrated by Mike Blanc
Picture book
For ages 6 to 8
VanitaBooks, 2008, 978-0-9800162-4-6
   Francesca is forever dreaming of what she is going to do when she is grown up. There are so many “possibilities,” so many career paths to choose from. One day Francesca talks to Mrs. Pinkler, who is weeding her flowerbed in the garden next door. Mrs. Pinkler tells Francesca that it fine to have dreams, they make life interesting. At the same time, “striving” for those dreams all the time “is not as marvelous as it seems.”
    How can Francesca be a dancer if she doesn’t first practice the craft? How can she be a teacher if you doesn’t first learn to “read, to spell and do math?” In short, how can Francesca achieve great things in the future if she does not live her childhood and teen hood to the fullest first.
   All too often children are in an enormous hurry to grow up. They want to do the things they see grownups doing so much that they fail to realize that there is a time and place for everything. Now it is their time to be a kid, and in the future it will be their time to be adults.
   In this clever picture book, Vanita Oelschlager’s text is paired with Mike Blanc’s lovely illustrations to convey a message that all children need to hear. 

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