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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
A little green jacket is sewn together with care in a factory far away. What child will wear this jacket? And will this jacket make the child feel safe and secure, and, most importantly, warm and loved? The jacket first finds its little boy on a farm and shares many adventures. When the little boy outgrows the green jacket, it’s donated through a youth group and another little boy enjoys the jacket's magical power that transfers the feeling of being special, being loved. And so the cycle continues as one child after another enjoys this little green jacket for a brief time before it is shared with another child who needs it more.
Jodi Dee’s picture book story, The Little Green Jacket, is quite simply amazing. In adult literature, this simple children’s tale would compare to the 1998 movie The Red Violin as an object, in this case, a green jacket, makes its way from one owner to the next, sharing its warmth, love and the magic of caring. The illustrations are superb and cleverly executed. Mostly black-and-white drawings, the only color in these images is the green of the jacket. While the plot develops in the third person narrative with inspiring dialogue between the key characters (the jacket’s different owners and their families), there is another voice that carries the story along; the voice of the little green jacket. This adds another dimension to the story, demonstrating the care that is passed from one person to another through an object, an essential garment that offers warmth and protection from the elements. A powerful story that speaks to all generations, clearly illustrating the simple means by which one can share their love and compassion with others.