cover image Everett Anderson

Everett Anderson

Lucille Clifton. Henry Holt & Company, $16.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8050-5201-5

One of the Problems of Everett Anderson, the eighth by Lucille Clifton, illus. by Ann Grifalconi, gently and sensitively addresses the issue of child abuse. After Everett notices bruises and scars on his new friend, Greg, he doesn't know what to do. ""I could tell the teacher,"" he says. ""[But] I don't want to make it bad for Greg or for his mom and dad."" Finally, Everett tells his mother, who helps Everett ""to understand that one of the things he can do right now is listen to Greg and hug and hold his friend."" Grifalconi's muted illustrations poignantly evoke the fear and uncertainty of the situation. An excellent choice for opening up a challenging conversation. (Sept.)