Thursday, December 24, 2009

Ruby and Little Joe by Angela McAllister

When we add books to our library collection we record, inside the front cover, the price and place of purchase so when I looked inside this unremarkable little picture book I was not surprised to see it came from one of my favourite children’s bookshops where the owner has such a passion and love for books and reading and children that her book choices are always a delight!

This is not an unremarkable little picture book. It is truly a gem. Ruby and Little Joe are toy kangaroos but they are not new. All the other toys are new and have never been loved. Their hearts are hard and so Ruby and Little Joe are not invited to sleep on the end of the bed and must sit on a hard shelf all night.

Ruby is so wise. She knows patience and perseverance will win the day but it is only when Little Joe finds himself in terrible peril, outside the house and inside the garbage bin, that all the other toys learn how to show kindness and each finds room for a heart to grow. This is the lesson Ruby has been quietly teaching them over the last few months.

I will certainly add this story to our read aloud list for Kindergarten along side I love you Blue Kangaroo by Emma Chichester Clark and Corduroy by Don Freeman.

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