cover image Just Right for Two

Just Right for Two

Tracey Corderoy, illus. by Rosalind Beardshaw. Candlewick/Nosy Crow, $15.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-7636-7344-4

Simplicity is the hallmark of this collaboration between Corderoy (No!) and Beardshaw (the Lola books). Dog rambles through the woods toting his vintage suitcase, which is filled with “special things” that include a pinecone, a “smooth rock with a hole in it,” a feather, a “really good stick,” and leaves that dance when tossed in the air. “I have everything I need!” Dog announces before falling asleep on his suitcase, “which was just the right size for one.” Dog awakens, however, to find a visitor—Mouse—snuggled up beside him. The two bond instantly, and when Mouse departs, Dog realizes that he needs “something else” after all. He goes in search of his new friend to help him discover what he’s missing, which is, of course, a “who” rather than a “what.” Beardshaw’s mixed-media art subtly incorporates patterns (in tree trunks, leaves, flowers) while capturing the characters’ mutual affection. The suitcase turns out to be a perfect bed for two, and this warm story is similarly just right for sparking conversations about friendship and what’s genuinely important. Ages 3–7. (Sept.)