The little boy in this story just wants to find the perfect place to read his book. He isn’t satisfied with each spot he tries, one being too hot (the big yellow chair is dwarfed by a giant, bright sun, its shape mirrored by an enormous lion’s face), another being too cold (the boy chatters in a high-back chair as a polar bear—and the lion from the “hot” page—peeks over his shoulder). Another is too slippery and slimy, as a green-hued spread depicts a swamp-like scene of frogs and lily pads (how did this determined little boy get a chair onto a lily pad?). However, with each spot the boy considers, a new animal emerges, wanting to be a part of his journey—which comes into play at the end of the book.
Leigh Hodgkinson (Troll Swap) brings wit and charm to this imaginative story of finding that sweet spot. Reminiscent of “The Princess and the Pea” and “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” for evoking the feeling that something is not quite right, A Place to Read teaches children that it’s not where you read that’s important, but rather the act of sharing a book with friends. This is an excellent book to be read aloud, as beginning readers and even pre-readers will enjoy pointing out the letters and words they recognize. But the illustrations take center stage: The little boy’s reading chair changes with each spread, revealing an assortment of upholstery and textures that are reflected in each setting.
This is a vibrant and visually appealing book for budding readers.