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Review: Frederick

frederick1

Frederick is a classic picture book by Leo Lionni, that features a mouse who gathers a different sort of provisions to help his family get through the long winter. Lest you think that this little mouse has not been popular, Frederick is a Caldecott Honor Book, an ALA Notable Children’s Book, and a New York Times Best Illustrated Book. Quite a lot of awards for such a little fellow! As you can likely tell from the cover, the full color art in this book appears to consist of photographed paper cut-outs. I love the effect that this creates. I especially enjoy Frederick on the cover and on the last page. Reading this story again, it strikes me as something that is obviously from the time in which it was published. The other mice seem willing to understand Frederick’s more cerebral contributions to their tangible preparations for the winter. I wish that we could get back to that way of thinking in our fast-paced, high stress world. As it is, reading Frederick reminds me that not everything important can be held in your hand. I know that’s a lot of conclusions to get from a children’s book, but once you’ve read it I think that you’ll see what I mean.

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