Prather’s Pick: A cuddly picture book
“A Long Time That I’ve Loved You,” this week’s picture book for children was written by Margaret Wise Brown, the author of “Goodnight Moon,” published in 1947 — a classic in children’s literature. The illustrations for this week’s book, done by Kate Hudson, are breathtaking.
The setting for the book is the wilderness. It’s May, and the land is covered with lush green grass and a variety of blooming flowers. The illustrator has covered the back and front inside pages with flowers, butterflies, and birds. They’re gorgeous.
The characters in the book are a cinnamon-brown mother bear and her cub. The illustrator has done a superb job of depicting them as the most lovable, devoted mother/son pair ever. The reader will undoubtedly want to cuddle up with them!
The cub bear is the narrator, who speaks to his mother with song. Each stanza of the rhyming storyline ends with: “It’s a long time that I’ve loved you; Never, never go away.”
The curious little bear is exploring the world, as little bears do, and the mother bear gives him space to do that, but she dutifully keeps watch — just as all mother bears are known to do.
Little bear tests the river’s water with his paw. He rolls around in the May flowers, and he watches a mother bird and her baby. He climbs up in a tree and sits on a branch as he keeps track of some songbirds.
The illustration of the baby bear in the tree is priceless. Mother bear has her front paws on the tree trunk, and her neck is stretched out as far as possible to keep her eye on her son. Pretty soon he puts his head on his mom while his feet still cling to the branch. And then what a hug when the little bear comes down out of the tree.
The cub splashes in the water as mother bear stands on the water fall above. Spring showers are falling, and there is a rainbow overhead. There is so much to see on this day in May! Then it is nightfall, and the ending illustrations are truly special!
This “cuddly” picture book is published by Silver Dolphin Books, 2019. The hardcover book costs $12.99. The book can also be found, with new books, in the children’s room at the Craig branch of Moffat County Libraries.