By: Deborah Lakritz
Publisher: Kar-Ben Publishing
Publication Date: September 2010
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: August 27, 2010
Lily, who had a bright smile and the cutest pigtails you ever did see, gathered up her coat, paper and colored markers when she thought her mother was going out. It was Mommy’s day to volunteer at Shalom House, an assisted living facility for seniors, but because Lily was so shy, she didn’t think it was a wise idea. Lily insisted on going and said, “I’ll draw pictures for everyone with my new markers. And I can show off my new shoes.” When they were in the car Mommy told her all about the place and asked her if she remembered Mrs. Rosenbaum, a beautiful artist who had an art studio and painted special flowers like orange lilies. Mrs. Rosenbaum lived at Shalom House and was no longer lonely with so many people around. Lily was confident that she was going to have a good time on this visit!
As soon as Lily saw all the people in Shalom House she “felt all jumbled up inside” and her heart began to beat wildly. Her little hand reached out for Mommy’s even though everyone was very friendly. Mrs. Seidel admired her new shoes and Dr. Berman, a former dentist, asked her to show off her smile so he could see her “clean, shiny teeth.” Oh, my! This was just too much for a shy little girl to bear and her eyes widened as she snuggled into the folds of Mommy’s pink coat. All her braveness had escaped her, but she was willing to take a little peek at Mrs. Rosenbaum. The next week when they went to visit Shalom House again, she did manage to stretch her arms during exercise class, but her beautiful smile was still hiding. Mrs. Rosenbaum said, “Be patient. She’ll be ready when she’s ready.” Would Lily be able to get over her shyness? Would she be able to show her beautiful smile to all the people at Shalom House?
This is a charming story of a little girl who tries to overcome her shyness with the help of the elders of Shalom House. Many young children are painfully shy and oftentimes it takes someone who is very special and very patient to help draw them out of their shells. Lily’s expectations far exceeded her ability to overcome her innate shyness, but the elders of Shalom House, especially Mrs. Rosenbaum, clearly understood her problem. I loved the joyous nature of the residents of the home and smiled as they patiently waited for Lily to join in their activities. The reader will enjoy the lovely little twist at the end of the book. The artwork is very colorful, peppy, and quite appealing. If you have a shy little girl who could relate to Lily’s woes, this is one book you may wish to consider!
Quill says: This special book accents the unique understanding and affinity that elders sometimes have with little ones, especially shy little girls like Lily!