When I was younger, there was something about a shiny gold medal on a book. The Caldecott and Newbery awards were the Good Housekeeping seal to those of us who loved to read, a guarantee that the artwork and the literature contained inside was of the utmost quality.
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So as my wife and I perused the kids section of our local megabookstore, I felt the old excitement brewing when I saw a nice shiny gold sticker on the cover of a large hardcover picture book. What was in store for me?
What I found was Green Eyes! Green Eyes is a Caldecott honor book from the 1950s. This simple picture book is the autobiography of a year old kitten and her experience through the seasons.
As a cat lover with a baby on the way, I was immediately drawn to the book. As I read the brief story, I imagined my new daughter sitting on my lap or laying in bed as I read the story. Maybe my daughter would look over at Arnie Barney (our black and white cat) and imagine the life he'd led. Or maybe we'd just simply stare at the simply drawn but vivid pictures of Bright Eyes and the farm animals, humans, and places she visits. I'd ask her where the cat was and she'd scan the pages and pick out the happy cat on each page.
This is my second review of this book. A fellow reviewer rightly pointed out the flaws of my first review. I'm sad to say that I still can't say why this book held my heart while other books I spied that day in the bookstore are long forgotten. Perhaps it is the visions a cat loving father sharing a lovely book about a cat with the daughter he hopes will grow to love both books and animals. When my daughter (who will probably be named Madeline!) arrives, this will be the first book I pick up for her.