cover image MY WISHES FOR YOU


Adele Geras, , illus. by Cliff Wright. . S&S, $15.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-689-85333-3

With the words, "I wish you..." as an introduction and unspoken refrain, Geras (Troy) launches an extended rhapsody on the hopes and promises that parents lavish upon their offspring. British artist Wright particularizes the blank verse with austere, taupe-toned watercolors depicting a day in the life of a bunny and its nurturing parents. "I wish you.../ A kind gaze following you/ as you walk./ A smile to smile at when you/ turn your head" accompanies an illustration of the mother and father rabbit anxiously but stoically watching their long-eared child as he or she heads into the world—which in this case, means a forest filled with predators (a hawk circles overhead, a hunter and his dog prowl the brush). But the bunny emerges unscathed (despite his conspicuous red sweater) and, playful as ever, blithely accepts its parents' unconditional affection. The bunny beds down for the night on an exposed hilltop, confident that he or she will be safe in their care. The greeting-card sentimentality that defines the book from beginning to end may not have much emotional resonance for youngsters, but the adult perspective about letting go may appeal to some parents. Ages 3-7. (Sept.)