Saturday, November 5, 2016

IDA, ALWAYS by Caron Levis / Book Review #picturebookmonth

By: Caron Levis
Illustrated by: Charles Santoso
Published by: Atheneum (Simon & Schuster)
Released on: February 23rd, 2016
Ages: 4 & up
Rating: 5 Owlets - We Loved It
Purchase from: Amazon 
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A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review  

A beautiful, honest portrait of loss and deep friendship told through the story of two iconic polar bears.

Gus lives in a big park in the middle of an even bigger city, and he spends his days with Ida. Ida is right there. Always.

Then one sad day, Gus learns that Ida is very sick, and she isn’t going to get better. The friends help each other face the difficult news with whispers, sniffles, cuddles, and even laughs. Slowly Gus realizes that even after Ida is gone, she will still be with him—through the sounds of their city, and the memories that live in their favorite spots.

Ida, Always is an exquisitely told story of two best friends—inspired by a real bear friendship—and a gentle, moving, needed reminder that loved ones lost will stay in our hearts, always.

A beautiful picture book that will make you feel ALL the book feelings. This is a book I hope wins some sort of award. It is so heartfelt, bittersweet, and beautifully written and illustrated story. 

Inspired by the real life story of two of NYC's iconic polar bears, Gus and Ida, this bittersweet story makes you feel like you as got to know these two polar bears, even without ever getting to visit them in person. From their years of friendship, to what they loved doing together, and how things changed when Ida got sick, to how it changed after she died. This story covers everything from friendship, to love, to sadness, loss, grief, and in the end, hope. What a beautiful tribute to them. The illustrations compliment this story perfectly. 

While this is a book about Gus and Ida, it's also a beautifully written, yet sensitive story about friendship, love, grief, and comfort. It's one that will bring comfort to kids who may be missing a loved one or friend, and remind them that while they can't see them, they'll always be there. Just like Gus knew Ida was. I loved the way this book this book was written, illustrated. 

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I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~ Anna Quindlen

Good children's literature appeals not only to
the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child.
~ Anonymous ~