Name of Book: I’d Choose You
Author: John Trent, Ph.D.
Illustrator: Judy Love
Publisher: Word Publishing
Audience: Recommended for Children Ages 3-7. However, the comforting words of the mother in this book are great for parents to hear and read and can model for them words to comfort their own child.
Summary: Norbert, the elephant, has just had one of the worst days ever. He is forced to sit all by himself on the roller coaster ride to school. Heidi, the hippo, sits in his mashed potatoes at lunchtime, and he is not picked to play ball with the other kids after school. When he comes home very upset about his day, his mother offers him words of encouragement. She provides him with a blessing, letting her son know that of all the kids in the world, she would always choose him to love, to cheer, to hug, and to support.
Literary elements at work in the story (Genre/setting/characterization/plot/theme/point of view/style): I’d Choose You is written as a beautiful and intimate dialogue between a comforting mother and her hurting child. The bright and colorful illustrations are fun and whimsical and lighten the tone as the reader struggles with Norbert as he tries to discover his self-worth. The author includes a letter to the parents at the beginning of the book on how parents may offer a blessing to their child each and every morning as they support and love their children as they grow.
(How) does the perspective on gender/race/culture/economics/ability make a difference to the story? Since the characters of this story are all wild animals, the reader is not concerned about gender, race, or cultural biases. Every child who has ever had a bad day can relate to this story, and every parent can use the words of encouragement to brighten their child’s day.
Theological conversation partners (scripture, confessions, doctrines, theologians, etc): Every person has been created in God’s image to reflect the love of God to everyone that they encounter. Each person is special and unique and loved. I’d Choose You beautifully illustrates the unconditional love that a parent has for their child and the unconditional love of God. The author references Deutoronomy 7:6 at the end of the book, reminding the readers that they have been chosen by God out of all the people on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession.
Faith Talk Questions
- Norbert had a pretty bad day. Think about your worst day ever. What happened? How did you feel? What made you feel better?
- Think about a time that someone has said encouraging words to you. What did they say? What encouraging words can you say to others?
- List all the gifts and talents that you have that make you special. When you read this list, how does it make you feel?
This review was written by Union Presbyterian Seminary student Mandy North.