Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

This Is Not a Valentine

This Is Not a Valentine

Carter Higgins
Illustrator:  Lucy Ruth Cummins 
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Chronicle Books, 2017   ISBN: 978-1452153742

It is Valentine’s Day and while they are waiting for their school bus to arrive, a girl gives a boy a Valentine’s Day card. The boy is shocked. He is not in favor of Valentine’s cards, gifts, and all the mushy stuff that goes with these things.

However, he does give the girl a little bouquet of dandelions, though he tells her that it is not a Valentine because the bouquet is not fancy. Furthermore most of the wishes have been blown off the fluffy, white dandelion heads.

Then he gives her a toy ring that he got out of a machine at a grocery store. It isn’t a Valentine either because “jewels and gems belong in treasure chests or museums or on ladies who sing at the opera.”

Then the boy gives the girl his cape, which is not a Valentine because it is red and red is not the girl’s favorite color. Mind you, red is a good color for a superhero and the girl is the boy’s favorite superhero.

Could it be that maybe, just maybe, the boy is finding unique ways to make the girl’s Valentine’s Day special?

Children are going to thoroughly enjoy this not-a-Valentine story that is actually a pretty good Valentine. We see, as the story unfolds, that the boy understands what the girl likes and dislikes. It would appear that he knows her quite well and likes her quite a lot. Though of course he is still NOT giving her a Valentine.

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