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Reviewed by Daniel D Staats for Readers' Favorite
A smile is contagious. Ben, the star of Victor Dias de Oliveira Santos’s book, The Boy Who Illustrated Happiness, was a smiler. More importantly, Ben was an optimist. He loved art and lived and breathed to be creative. Those who smile a lot also tend to be happy. Happy people make others into happy people. Victor shows the importance of looking at life’s bright side. He has Ben share his creativity to encourage others and make them happy. It makes Ben happy to awaken happiness in those around him. Eszter Miklós's illustrations are eye-catching and will draw the young reader in so they will enjoy reading the story. Victor and Eszter have created a grand book to encourage young people to share their feelings through art or whatever their particular skill may be.
Victor Dias de Oliveira Santos has produced a brilliant and creative idea in The Boy Who Illustrated Happiness. Ben, the main character, is determined to make as many people as possible happy. He realizes that this number can be greatly increased if he recruits others to share happiness. The club requires each member to do something daily that will make someone else happy. Each child in the club uses their skill -- singing, drawing, writing, origami, etc. -- to make others happy. Ben’s motto is a great one to teach young people and adults alike. It is simply: “What can YOU do today to make someone happy?” Parents and children should take this motto to heart and go about making others happy. Victor has a knack for understanding children and motivating them.