Bee Love, written by Kristin Hallett, illustrated by Mandy Stobo

Bee Love
written by Kristin Hallett
illustrated by Mandy Stobo
Page Two Books, 2021
978-1-989603-91-8 (hc) $23.95
For all ages

Picture Book | Parental Love | Life Lessons | Big Dreams

Little Bee has immense aspirations, which he shares with his mother, the Queen Bee, one evening just before bedtime. He yearns to perform his songs on stage and become rich and famous. Flying solo to the moon in a spaceship of his design that will break speed records will clearly show the world his clever mind and courage. Becoming a top athlete and being surrounded by many possessions expands Little Bee’s wish list. After listening intently to his dreams, his mother then shares her own wisdom as to what matters most in life:  Be humble and kind.  Be real with your feelings. Never lose hope or give up.  Possessions aren’t that important. “Until you stop wanting,/you’ll never start living./You receive what most matters/when you begin giving./It is love, Little Bee,/that makes you shine bright./Love is what makes/the whole world work right.”

In her debut book, author Kristin Hallett has written a moving tribute about the steadfast strength of a mother’s caring and wisdom as she shares some important life lessons that may help a child to overcome future challenges. Using rhyming verses, the lilting text will be requested to be read again and again.

Mandy Stobo’s effervescent hand-painted collage and mixed media artwork leap from the pages. Paint, cut-out puppets and scrapbook materials in vivid hues provide readers with a visual feast. The text’s lettering, hand-drawn and then cut up, also ensures a most unique reading experience.

—Senta Ross is a former elementary teacher and teacher-librarian in Kitchener, Ontario.

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