Book Review | Say Hello, Lily
by Deborah Lakritz

Score: 3

Illustrated by Martha Av

© 2010, Kar-Ben Publishing.

In this charming story, a young girl visits a senior citizens’ home with her mother. Her first visit is a bit scary as, with the exception of a former neighbor, she is unfamiliar with the place and its residents. Over time, however, she adapts to the people and the routines,  so much so that she decides she wants to celebrate her sixth birthday with all of them.

The language of the story is perfect for young children who may have grandparents or elderly relatives now living in such residences. It offers a validation of their potential feelings of being overwhelmed by individuals, known and unknown, fawning over their looks or their actions. It goes on to demonstrate that there will come a time when they will “be ready” to accept the attention and participate in the life of this new community. The illustrations are picture perfect and will appeal to children of any age with bright colors and drawings illustrating life in the retirement home that show an engaging and engaged community.

This is an excellent story to begin a discussion of the Jewish Value of “respect for the Elderly/ hiddur p’nai zaken.” It would also make a great companion story if a school provides the opportunity for young children to visit a Senior Center or offers a Grandparents’ Day as part of their programming.

Grade Level: K-3rd
Ages: 5-9

©2011 Kathleen M. Bloomfield and forwordsbooks.com all rights reserved.
Books used in this review were provided by my local public library.
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