Out of Nowhere

S. & S. Mar. 2021. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781534481008.
PreS-K–In this gentle story about the value of friendship, a red caterpillar becomes a surprising companion to a beetle. They spend many idyllic days together, until the caterpillar suddenly disappears. Spotting something red in the distance, the beetle embarks on an ambitious trek to find their friend. The quest proves fruitless until the caterpillar—now transformed into a butterfly—finds the beetle instead. Happily, they resume their comforting daily routine. Large scale black-and-white pencil illustrations with pops of red are visually striking, and the straightforward prose makes for an appealing read-aloud. The story deftly conveys affirming themes of caring and acceptance, as the beetle loves the caterpillar/butterfly unconditionally. Too, the beetle’s journey opens the door to valuable discussions about emotions, relationships, and how to react to change.
VERDICT Comforting and emotionally resonant with a great deal of charm, this is a first purchase for picture book collections.

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