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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
The Reason I Held You Close by Evelyn E. Garland is a sweet little story on the important role of parents in the emotional, psychological, and spiritual development of their children. Told from the point of view of a loving parent, the story doesn’t necessarily have a plot but is an account of the things that most parents would want to tell their children. Here we have a family of four, a father, a mother, a young son, and a young daughter, who are spending quality time with one another. The parent is explaining to his or her children the importance of being loved and how holding them close will help them to become the best version of themselves. As the story progresses, we see the children transition from childhood to adolescence, with the narrator’s voice showing a sense of pride and accomplishment.
It is said that we do not own our children because, at some point in their lives, they will grow up and spread their wings. While they are still fledglings on the brink of discovering the world, we do what we can to provide them with all the love and security that we can give. The Reason I Held You Close perfectly illustrates the power of parental love that is essential to children’s growth and development. Evelyn E. Garland tells the reasons in a way so that they become the story. With lovely illustrations rendered in strong shades of color, these pictures become part of every word, every message about how holding children close will help them accomplish great things. In a time when many families are facing challenges, this storybook is sure to make them feel good.