Hope


Children - Concept
42 Pages
Reviewed on 05/28/2018
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

Hope is a little white dachshund, a little girl’s best friend. Hope is always there, when the little girl is walking, sleeping, reading or just enjoying her ice cream. Hope is there even when the little girl doesn’t realize she’s there. It’s as if the girl, distracted by her own life, takes Hope’s presence for granted. Until one day, she’s no longer there. Everything changes. But the little girl finally decides to take action and she goes searching for her Hope, her little white dachshund.

Richard Aab’s picture book story, Hope, is an allegory to help young readers understand the meaning and the metaphysical concept of hope. In this age of modern conveniences, interruptive devices and complex challenges, it’s far too easy to become complacent about life and what life has to offer. But, like in the allegory, there is always hope. All one has to do is look for it, continually, with determined persistence and perseverance.

The colorful illustrations help carry this story along. When Hope the dachshund is by the little girl’s side, the world around them both is bright and colorful and cheery. All the flowers are blooming and the trees are lush with leaves. When Hope the dachshund mysteriously disappears, the illustrations depict barren trees and drooping flowers. Everything looks downcast and hopeless. When Hope is found, all is right in the world again and the illustrations depict bright, colorful flowers once more and trees full of leaves. This is a great story for young readers, something to be shared with a grownup as it is bound to open up a multitude of questions. Well done!

Jack Magnus

Hope is a children’s picture book written by Richard Aab and illustrated by Madalyn McLeod. Hope had always been there from the time her human companion was very small. The two of them were best friends and playmates. Sometimes Hope was rambunctious and demanding, encouraging her human companion to leave off reading a book and join in a game of Frisbee or catch. As she grew, her little dog grew along with her and remained by her side, or following a few steps behind. Sometimes she’d stay away for a while and just not be there at all, but Hope always did come back -- until one day she didn’t. The girl’s life seemed to grow dark and colorless without her canine friend. The world turned stormy and devoid of light and warmth until she decided that she would go out and find Hope. She knew Hope was out there, and she was determined, no matter what, to go out and rescue her.

Richard Aab’s children’s picture book, Hope, is a moving story about a girl and her dog which works on a number of levels. I found myself mourning the loss of her pet and feeling the dark and gloomy illustrations that accompany the text, and then cheering her on as she decides to reject the loss and go out and find Hope. Her incarnation into Perseverance Girl is illuminating and powerful, and it sends a grand message to kids who are feeling powerless and lost. Madalyn McLeod’s illustrations are brilliant. Her nature paintings convey the emotions felt by the girl most powerfully through her use of color, brush strokes and imagery. Hope is highly recommended.