Saturday, January 7, 2012

Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch by Eileen Spinelli

Mr. Hatch is a quiet little man who works in a factory. Every day he eats the same lonely lunch. Every evening he makes two stops on his way home from work, buying a newspaper and a turkey wing for his dinner. He doesn't ever visit with anybody, or even talk to them beyond the basics necessary for conducting his daily business. "Mr. Hatch keeps to himself," is what everybody says.

Then one day something happens. On Valentine's Day, in fact, the postman delivers a giant heart-shaped box of candy to Mr. Hatch. Enclosed is a note that says, "Somebody loves you." Mr. Hatch is energized. He changes his routine, he talks to people, he even makes brownies for the whole neighborhood.

But then--oh, why does there have to be a but?--Mr. Hatch learns the candy wasn't meant for him.

Eileen Spinelli's simply-told story gently demonstrates the power of love to transform not only an individual but those around him as well. The colored pencil illustrations by Paul Yalowitz subtly reflect the mood of the story, going from browns and grays to pinks, yellows, and purples, back to the original browns and grays...but don't worry, both text and illustrations end with beautiful, brilliant color!

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