One Bright Ring

Gretchen Géser. Holt, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8050-9279-0
Géser has built her debut with great care and thought. The story is simple: a man loses a diamond engagement ring in front of a girl out on a walk in the city with her mother. She spots it, chases after him, and returns it secretly just as he’s about to propose. Géser frames the tale as a counting story of sorts: “One” is the “little hole” in the man’s pocket and the ring that falls out of it; “two jackhammers pound and smash,” preventing him from hearing the girl’s cry; “three tugs on Mommy’s sleeve” signal the start of a chase. “One brave girl cries,/ ‘This way! This way!’/ And she pulls her mommy through.” The fact that the girl accomplishes her heroic rescue without breaking any rules will reassure nervous parents, and her willingness to do the right thing without public recognition is also noteworthy (although cupcakes do appear as a reward at the end). Digitally manipulated watercolor-and-ink illustrations delineate the action clearly while creating an air of both excitement and romance. Ages 4–8. Agent: Rachel Orr, Prospect Agency. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/08/2013
Release date: 05/21/2013
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