Little Rabbit’s best friend Harry is very special. They play in the snow, swim in the summer months and watch out for each other. Little Rabbit is always looking out for Harry’s interests, ensuring his mother brings Harry a glass of lemonade and his share of the cookies – and make sure she doesn’t sit on him. Little Rabbit’s other friends call his best friend “Imagine Harry” but that’s only because they can’t see him.
When it’s time for Little Rabbit to start school, his mother tells him Harry can go with him but only if he sits quietly and is very good. As Little Rabbit becomes more involved with school life and his new friends, Harry slips into the background until the day it is revealed that he has “moved away.”
Sisters Kate and M. Sarah Klise’s newest collaboration, Imagine Harry, is a poignant story of friendship, whether real or imagined. The beauty of this simple tale is the understanding with which Little Rabbit’s mother treats Harry. There is no condescension, only the same acceptance shown to his “real” friends.
Many children have a period of their life shared with imaginary friends and Imagine Harry is a respectful way to help young ones understand that such friendships fade with time. At the beginning, Sarah’s soft illustrations contain empty spaces symbolizing Harry and, as the story progresses, the empty spaces become smaller.
Young children will find much to identify with in this gentle story. Starting school, and the need to make new friends, can be a scary experience for many children. Imagine Harry may help make this transition an easier one for families.
Read the review at Armchair Interviews.
Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
Publication Date: June 1, 2007
tags: books children's book reviews picture book Kate Klise M. Sarah Klise