I'll Alway's Love You

Published in 1985, by Crown Publishers, I'll always Love You, is the story of

a child’s love for his dog, Elfie. Brilliantly author/ illustrated by, Hans Wilhelm, I'll Always Love You, nicely communicates the relationship between a boy and his dog.

“My brother and sister loved Elfie very much, but she was my dog,” we are told by the first person narrator in the beginning of the story. The child makes it a point to tell Elfie he will always love her each night before they go to asleep. Hans Wilhelm steadily moves us along with his masterful portrayal of the development of the close bond shared between the child, and his dog. As the years go by the young boy grows older, and Elfie grows rounder (and older) until the family takes her to a vet who explains to the family that Elfie is slowing down with age.
Then one night Elfie dies in her sleep, and although brokenhearted the boy finds comfort in the fact that he always told her he loved her. The heart-warming plot moves forward with the child’s heartbreaking message of conveying our love for our loved ones while they are here. After Elfie’s burial the narrator explains how his brother and sister never told Elfie how they felt about her. His grief is somewhat relieved by the fact that he told her he loved her every night.

A neighbor offers him a puppy, and he judiciously declines although he knows Elfie would not mind. Then he gives the neighbor Elfie's basket figuring the neighbors puppy needed it more. It seems he is thinking of his neighbor when in actuality he is helping himself. Wilhelm's has an ability to teach us without us knowing a gift shared by all great storytellers. There is not one wasted word in this beautifully crafted picture book.
Hans Wilhelm creates an atmosphere that is warm, sensitive, and inviting, a book every child should have on their bookcase.
Age Group- 4-8

1 comment:

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