Niko Draws A Feeling by Bob Raczka, illustrations by Simone Shin

Published by 21st Century

Summary:  Niko loves to draw his feelings.  When he sees something, he tries to capture the way it makes him feel with splashes of color on the paper.  His family and friends don’t understand.  They keep trying to figure out what the object is that he’s drawn.  This makes Niko sad, and he draws that sadness.  Then one day, he meets Iris.  When she asks to see his pictures, Niko is hesitant, afraid she will react like everyone else.  Finally, he takes her to his room, and she looks at all the pictures.  She just looks at first, but when she sees his picture of sadness, she says, “You must have been sad when you drew that picture.”  Nico feels like a window has opened in his brain.  Immediately, he draws a new picture–one that shows how it feels to make a new friend.  32 pages; ages 4-8.

Pros:  A gentle, warm introduction to art, friendship, and being yourself..

Cons:  Young readers may label Niko’s drawings as “scribbling”.

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