9781935954149

Happy is a simple book that packs a big punch. The book, by Mies Van Hout (Lemniscaat, $17.99) is about emotions: happy, sad, surprised, angry, shy. That’s it. These are the only words in the book. Each page just lists one word. And the back ground is black. On every double-page spread. Seriously, that’s it. Black background and one word. Plus a fish. A fish drawn in what looks like pastels, but I’m the first to admit that I don’t know my art mediums. Each fish aptly expresses the emotion listed. Happy, as you can see from the cover, is bright and vibrant. Smiling wide. That fish just looks so . . . happy. I mean, it’s perfect. There is no other way to describe that fish. Excited? No, not exactly. Pleased? Cheerful? Merry? Blithe?  Nope, those aren’t right either. That fish is happy. No doubt about it. All the other fish in this book also perfectly reflect their respective emotion. So much so, that you will find yourself laughing out loud, because YES! that’s exactly what it’s like to feel surprised, or shy, or happy. Happy is fun book for introducing emotions to children ages 2-3, or enjoying with slightly older kids, ages 4-6, who will appreciate the humor in the illustrations.

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