Friday, June 03, 2016

Surprise! A Perfect Father's Day by Eve Bunting

"I'm taking you out for a perfect Father's Day," Susie said.

"First we'll go for lunch."

"May I drive?" Dad said.

Certainly," Susie said.

It's no surprise for Dad that Susie chooses her favorite fast food place for lunch.

"May I pay?" Dad says.

Susie announces that next she is taking Dad for a walk around the pond to feed the ducks. Dad buys the duck food, but he is mostly mobbed by pigeons.

Susie asks if Dad likes the swings, and he agrees, pushing her way up high. Susie asks if he likes monkey bars as she scampers to the top. Dad tries to follow her, with a little less of a scamper.

Susie asks Dad if he wants a Father's Day balloon.

Dad buys two, a red balloon for Susie and another one, blue, for Mom, and they head for home.

Dad closed the car window so the balloons wouldn't float away. And so Susie wouldn't float away either.

Susie leans toward Dad with a conspiratorial voice.

"Mom has a special cake for you," Susie whispered. "It's chocolate with chocolate frosting and yellow writing, and there are four yellow candles, one for each year you've been my dad. It's a surprise."

"I like surprises," says Dad

And back home it is just as promised. Mom is dressed up in Dad's favorite, her sparkly shirt, and her prettiest tablecloth is on the round table, with the aforementioned chocolate cake with four yellow candles all lit, one for each year he's been a dad. All that's left to do is to give Dad a well-deserved hug. And Susie does. (And so does Mom.)

Eve Bunting's A Perfect Father's Day (Houghton Mifflin Clarion) celebrates everything that makes a good father so special. The multiple award-winning Bunting knows well how to pace a story for the storytime set, with a touch of sly humor for the grownups in the mix, and Susan Meddaugh (of the famous Martha Speaks books and PBS series) provides the charming and evocative illustrations (watch Dad's eyes) that provide the perfect book for Father's Day.

If you dare give away the surprise, pair this one with Jean Reagan's How to Surprise a Dad (see review here).

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