So most of you know that I normally review young adult (and occasionally middle grade) books. But I'm going to deviate into the realm of picture books today, because someone took the time to send me a special Valentine's Day book.
Queen of Hearts is an Ann Estelle Story about Ann Estelle's classroom Valentine's party. Each member of the class is decorating a special box to hold thier valentines in during the party. Ann Estelle is especially excited about the box and spends all week decorating the best box ever. But she works so hard on The Box that she forgets to make valentines for her friends. The solution she comes up with is completely expected, but sweet nonetheless.
I'm not the kind of person who usually goes crazy about picture books. There are definately some I get excited about, especially if the story is especially unique. Queen of Hearts is more of your generic picture book feel good story. The back says "ages 4 to 8" and I think that pretty much hits the age range right on the dot. Don't get me wrong, the story was very cute, but it's the kind of story you would expect.
However, I have long loved Mary Englebreit's illustrations. That factor alone saves the book for me. I love way that she captures emotion in her pictures. This is the first Ann Estelle book I've read, but I'm glad to see Engelbreit doing things for children's books beyond just illustration. It's a wonderful way to introduce her artwork to new readers.
By the way, has anyone seen the covers for Mary Engelbreit's Classic Library? They are so lovely! Those are the classics I want for my children. It makes me wish I could get my hands on them in person. Le sigh...
But back to the review at hand. Bottom line, if you're looking for a great Valentine's Day book to add to your picture book library, Queen of Hearts would make a wonderful addition. It's exactly what you would expect for Valentine's Day, but it's sure to be a hit with little girls.
Shady Glade Rating: 7/10