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One Smile Hardcover – September 1, 2002
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From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 2-On the way to the bus, a little girl smiles brightly at a young man sitting on a park bench. He has recently lost his job and is feeling discouraged, but Katie's smile inspires him to start looking for a new one. The young man in turn helps a woman change her flat tire; the woman, feeling grateful, leaves a large tip for a waitress; the waitress uses the tip to buy food for a picnic for her children, and they invite another family to share with them; etc., etc., etc. In the end, Katie and the man are reunited when he has a new position as a mechanic and repairs her mother's car. This enables the child to attend her grandfather's birthday party. The purpose of the story is to show how even the smallest act of kindness can powerfully impact the lives of others, but the events seem manipulated. Also, the waitress's tip enables her to buy sodas, potato salad, fried chicken, and a soccer ball, which seems highly unlikely. While the full-bleed, full-spread pictures of Lisa and the people she meets are colorful and competently done, this is an additional purchase.
Elaine Lesh Morgan, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
K-Gr. 2. Here's a purposive story, but an effective one nonetheless. A little girl who is walking through the park with her mother gives a discouraged young man a smile and starts a chain of events that brings good feelings and goodwill to a whole world beyond her ken. The young man helps a woman change a tire. Later, feeling grateful, the woman leaves a waitress an extra-large tip; the waitress uses the money to buy treats for her children, which they share with a lonely girl. And so it goes, people of different races and ages being kind to one another until the benevolence comes full circle, and the young man who originally received the smile gets a job at a garage and is able to fix the vehicle belonging to the girl and her family. The watercolor illustrations are expansive and expressive, though sometimes the characters themselves are stiff. Adults looking for materials about values will find this a good place for primary-graders to begin discussion. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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One Smile can take you on many adventures from the first smile to the last.Read more