Friday, April 17, 2020

Dog, Gone: Where Lily Isn't by Julie Paschkis

Lily ran,

and wiggled,

and wagged,

but not now.

The loss of a beloved being is hard, whether a pet or a person.

Lily's not there on the little rug beside the girl's bed in the morning. She's not there begging at breakfast. She's not there to bark when someone comes to the door or to pull every which way but the right way on the leash, or to bark a happy welcome after school.
The house is full of all the places where Lily isn't.

Where is Lily?

The loss of a pet is usually the first loss children know, and it takes time to realize that they still live in memory and in the heart, in the Caldecott-winning author Julie Paschkis' new picture book, Where Lily Isn't (Henry Holt and Company, 2020).

Loss of something or someone loved is hard, but a part of life that comes sooner or later to everyone. Artist Paschkis has her little girl keep the memory of her pet close by drawing pictures that keep her beloved dog in her heart. Others may have different ways, and reading books like this one is a way children can learn to deal with personal loss. Margaret Chodos-Irvine adds comforting illustrations, both of Lily's presence in memory and of her loss. Says Kirkus in a starred review, "Understated but powerful . . . with a sweet, unforgettable ending."

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