Raymond's Perfect Present

Overview

One day Raymond sees a young woman smile with pleasure when she is given a gift of flowers. Maybe I could buy Mom some flowers, Raymond thinks, to help her feel better now that she is home from the hospital.

When Raymond realizes he doesn't have enough money to buy flowers, he decides to grow them from seeds, but his mother has to return to the hospital before the flowers bloom. As the flowers grow and then begin to wilt, Raymond fears his mother will never see his present after...

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Overview

One day Raymond sees a young woman smile with pleasure when she is given a gift of flowers. Maybe I could buy Mom some flowers, Raymond thinks, to help her feel better now that she is home from the hospital.

When Raymond realizes he doesn't have enough money to buy flowers, he decides to grow them from seeds, but his mother has to return to the hospital before the flowers bloom. As the flowers grow and then begin to wilt, Raymond fears his mother will never see his present after all. The gift she receives instead is a total surprise, and more perfect than anything Raymond has planned.

Winner of LEE & LOW'S New Voices Honor Award, Raymond's Perfect Present captures the innocence of a child's love for his mother as he struggles through a difficult time. This heart-warming story reaches out to all readers who have sought to give those they love the "perfect present."

When Raymond's mother becomes sick, he remembers that she misses the living things of the country and, with the help of their neighbor, he tries to prepare the perfect present for her.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-A gentle story of a single mom and a loving son. Raymond's mother is not well. He can't afford the flowers he would like to give her, but he does have enough money for seeds. As he watches them grow into plants, his mother is taken to the hospital. While she is there, the flowers bloom, attract beautiful butterflies, and wilt. The boy is devastated, but when his mother comes home and discovers the birds enjoying the seeds from the dried flowers, she is delighted with her perfect present. Wang's illustrations are "rendered in pencil, scanned into a computer, and then further designed with Adobe Photoshop-." The contrast of hospital starkness and floral vibrancy nicely supports the text. The story is too long for storytime but would be comforting as a read-aloud with a child who has a hospitalized relative. Raymond's successful gift and his mother's recovery will both reassure and please youngsters. This admirable first book is a lovely tale of triumph over the adversity of illness and limited resources.-Jody McCoy, The Bush School, Seattle, WA Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
An Honor book in the publisher’s New Voices Award competition, this is a sweet, if somewhat sentimental, look at a boy trying to cope with his mother’s serious illness. The illness is never named, nor is the absent father ever mentioned. Raymond and his mother are fortunate to have close elderly neighbors in their city apartment who look after the boy while his mother has an extended hospital stay. The couple is sympathetic to Raymond’s wish to give his mother a special surprise gift when she returns home. When he decides to plant flower seeds, they provide the pots, and they take him for regular visits to see his mother. Although the flowers have bloomed and scattered before his mother can see them, Mom is delighted to see the birds that come to strip their seeds. In an upbeat, but not unrealistic ending, Raymond and his mother enjoy a walk in the park. Wang’s (When the Circus Came to Town, 2001, etc.) stylized illustrations, rendered in pencil and scanned into a computer, picture an Asian boy and his mother. Their coloration reflects the boy’s mood, full color when he’s planning his surprise, muted blues and white when he is worried. A story with bibliotherapeutic possibilities. (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781584300557
  • Publisher: Lee & Low Books, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/28/2002
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,018,457
  • Age range: 6 years
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 1.60 (d)

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