The Little Kid with the Big Green Hand

Abrams. Sept. 2023. 224p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781419771224.
K-Gr 2–A young girl learns to embrace her differences in this quirky illustrated book for young readers. As the title suggests, Lenore was born with a big green hand. Embarrassed and frustrated by this oddity, she tries to hide her hand by wrapping it in a scarf, only to get the surprise of her life when the hand starts talking to her. As it turns out, the hand, Chuck, wasn’t thrilled to be stuck to a small pink blob, and recounts his adventurous attempt to escape. Ultimately, Chuck and Lenore realize they’re in this world together and choose to recognize the value in each other’s existence in a conclusion that offers an uplifting message about living with a physical difference or what others may conventionally perceive to be a disability. The surreal tone of this story is sure to elicit giggles from children. At the same time, it may spark important discussions about differences and empathy. Divided into short chapters, each page of this book features just one or two sentences accompanying a single illustration. Expressive pencil drawings mimic the look of children’s artwork. Color is used effectively throughout the story: Visuals are initially rendered in gray scale with the occasional pop of green, but as Chuck and Lenore discover the beauty of seeing the world anew, soft pastels bloom on the pages.
VERDICT This book is undeniably weird but beautiful, imparting an priceless and enduring message about accepting differences and seeing with others’ perspectives.

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