Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers
Summary: Leo and his dad love their blue house, despite its mossy roof, peeling paint, and unreliable heating system. Astute readers will notice clues in the illustrations that the neighborhood is changing: small houses are being torn down, replaced by larger buildings. One day, Leo’s dad picks him up from school and tells him that their house has been sold, and they have to move. Leo is devastated. Slowly, he and his father pack up their house, painting pictures on the bare walls to make themselves feel a little better. They move into another small house in the same neighborhood. “’I hate it,’ said Leo. ‘That’s okay,’ said his dad.” Leo’s idea to paint a picture of the blue house on his bedroom wall helps, though, and slowly, the new house starts to feel like home. 40 pages; ages 4-8.
Pros: There’s a lot to love about this book: it portrays a single-parent family that is succeeding despite the fact that they clearly are struggling financially; it deals with the sadness of moving and leaving a beloved home; and the illustrations offer tons of details that both help tell the story and are just fun (I loved the record albums). Both the story and pictures should be enjoyed slowly and savored.
Cons: It doesn’t seem like a great idea to move to another small house in the same neighborhood that seems to be undergoing gentrification.