The Secret of Saying Thanks


Perhaps you'd like to know a secret, one of the happiest ones of all.
You will surely find it for yourself one day.
You'll discover it all on your own, maybe when you least expect it. If you've not yet discovered the secret of saying thanks, it's waiting for you. The secret can be found in the sunrise that offers promises full for the day ahead, or in the gentle shade of a tree sheltering you from the hot rays...

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Perhaps you'd like to know a secret, one of the happiest ones of all.
You will surely find it for yourself one day.
You'll discover it all on your own, maybe when you least expect it. If you've not yet discovered the secret of saying thanks, it's waiting for you. The secret can be found in the sunrise that offers promises full for the day ahead, or in the gentle shade of a tree sheltering you from the hot rays of the sun, or on the rock that offers rest from a long walk.
In the inspirational text that made him a bestselling, internationally acclaimed author, Douglas Wood offers a spiritual homage to nature and the world. Greg Shed's stunning portraits of the natural world tenderly portray all of the many ways in which we can say thanks for the wonders we sometimes take granted in life.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
With a gentle, assured tone and graceful phrasing, Wood (Old Turtle) shares a life lesson sure to inspire: that true happiness lies in giving thanks and appreciating all there is to be thankful for. Addressing readers directly, the author suggests that everyone learns this secret in their own way and own time. "Maybe you'll first find the secret/ in your own home/ sitting around a table with people you love..."; "You might discover the secret at dawn,/ a morning like all other mornings." In this same fashion he creates a descriptive catalogue of many of the simple gifts to be treasured, from a warm hand to hold, to a cool breeze or singing bird. The spiritual notes rung here, and a brief mention of "your bedtime prayer," should prove applicable to a broad readership of many faith traditions. Shed's airy oil paintings depict a girl and her dog exploring and experiencing their outdoor surroundings on a sunny spring day in the country. The skillful play of light and shadow in his work adds depth to the soft-edged portraits. Ages 3-8. (Oct.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-A quiet, reflective piece on the importance of a grateful attitude. With a light hand, Wood shares the idea that there is "a secret [in life], one of the happiest ones of all." Readers may discover it as the sun welcomes a new day, or maybe it will come when they really notice a flower and its fragrance for the first time. Maybe just some cool shade on a hot day or hearing a bird sing will lead them to say, "Thank you." There is much to be grateful for: the stars, the moon aglow at night, lakes and rivers, ponds or puddles, family and people we love. Each spread is a reminder of the wonders around us. "The heart that gives thanks is a happy one-. We don't give thanks because we're happy. We are happy because we give thanks." This is a pleasing story for times of contemplation. It is not heavy-handed or preachy, and should appeal across cultures or religions. While it has a definite spiritual tone, it does not promote a singular point of view. Shed's oil illustrations of a young girl and her golden retriever noticing the world around them appear as though they are being viewed through a gauzy shade. The effect plays well with the peaceful nature of the text. This title could be used anywhere books with "values" lessons are in demand.-Roxanne Burg, Orange County Public Library, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
The author of Old Turtle and other modern fables presents a rather convoluted explanation of feeling thankful for all the blessings in life, including the wonders of nature as well as the comforts of home and family. The story follows a girl and her dog as she visits the country home of her grandparents, enjoying some contemplative time outdoors in the fall. The second-person text is structured around the discovery of a "secret" that can be discovered as one expresses thanks-a grateful attitude leads to happiness, rather than the other way around. The philosophical orientation is a little murky, as thanks are offered to natural objects (flowers, rocks, mountains) directly and prayer is mentioned in a rather general way, with no mention of God. Shed's sun-dappled, impressionistic paintings create a believable persona for the main character, who is clearly both grateful and happy at her idyllic country sojourn with her golden retriever always by her side. (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689854101
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • Publication date: 9/27/2005
  • Edition description: Repackage
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 274,693
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.75 (w) x 12.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Douglas Wood is the author of When a Dad Says “I Love You,” When a Grandpa Says “I Love You, The Secret of Saying Thanks, and A Quiet Place as well as the New York Times bestselling Can’t Do series. His books Old Turtle and Old Turtle and the Broken Truth were both international bestsellers. Additional titles include No One But You, illustrated by P.J. Lynch; Franklin and Winston: A Christmas That Changed The World, illustrated by Barry Moser; and Where the Sunrise Begins, illustrated by K.Wendy Popp. Douglas lives in a cabin in the woods of Minnesota. A studied naturalist, he shares his knowledge of nature as a wilderness guide.

Greg Shed is a self-taught artist who lives in San Diego, California. He has illustrated numerous children's books and his artwork is known for its light and texture. His hobbies include hiking, music, and American history.

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