Susanna Leonard Hill has a feature on her blog called Perfect Picture Book Friday. It is a list of “perfect” picture books recommended by all sorts of people. I chose this book because I think it has a wonderful message – stay positive, and live life to its fullest no matter what.
Published by Ladybug Publishing on January 16, 2012
Theme/Topic- Early death / Living life to the fullest
Genre- Realistic fiction / Based on a true story
Opening and Synopsis-
“In a quaint village with cobblestone streets, charming shops, and glowing homes, there lived two horses that were very much in love.”
The horse couple wanted to have a baby colt and a year later a baby arrived. They didn’t notice that the baby was a bit smaller than other colts or that it looked a little (okay a lot) different than other colts because they loved him so much. They were surprised to learn from the pediatrician that their little colt was no colt at all, but that he was a labybug. They were also very upset to learn that ladybugs only live for a short time compared to how long horses live.
The story goes on to show that the ladybug loved being a ladybug and the horses came to accept that the ladybug needs to live the life he was meant for.
Why I liked this book- This is a very sweet book, based on the true, sad, story of the author’s son, who died at 14 months of Leigh Syndrome. The story has a bit of humor (two horses have a ladybug for a kid, and they don’t realize it until a doctor tells them) and that makes it pretty good for younger kids. I like the illustrations. They are very cute and well done. I think this book is a good book for adults and kids who have to deal with the loss of a child. Even though the book deals with a very hard subject, it has a positive vibe to it. A portion of the sales of this book goes to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation (UMDF).
Activities and Resources-
There is an author’s note at the back of the book explaining the real life connection to the book.
At the book’s website, people can learn about Leigh’s Syndrome and UMDF). Click HERE to go to it.
PBS has a whole section of their website called “When Families Grieve.” There are videos, activities and other suggestions for parents and children on how to deal with loss. Click HERE to go to it.
Visit the book’s official website HERE.
Like “The Gift of the Ladybug” on Facebook HERE.
Follow on twitter HERE.
To find more Perfect Picture Books please visit Susanna Hill’s blog HERE!