By Elizabeth Lopez
What can be more exciting than a surprise? How about a surprise that happens right in the middle of a celebration?
In the delightful Memorial Day Surprise by Theresa Martin Golding and published by Boyds Mills Press, this is exactly what awaits a young boy named Marco during the town's Memorial Day parade.
Right before leaving for the parade, Mama promises Marco that a surprise is in store for him and tells him they must hurry to get there. Marco and his Mama even skip their usual visit to his grandfather's house in order to get to the parade on time.
The parade includes everything a child would be excited about: balloons, a marching band, floats, candy and even firefighters too! Full of anticipation, Marco tries his best to guess what Mama's surprise can be.
As the group of proud veterans marches closer to Marco, he not only discovers the surprise Mama promised, but also the personal connection that he has to the Memorial Day holiday.
Using watercolor and crayon, Alexandra Artigas creates bright two-page spreads throughout the book that are sure to draw children into the parade right along with Marco. As the story builds, the illustrations will also bring joy and smiles to the faces of children.
The theme of the story offers a perfect opportunity to teach children about the veterans honored during Memorial Day. This book makes for a wonderful preschool or family storytime selection for librarians and children will be at the edge of their seats trying to figure out what Marco's surprise will be. Recommended for ages 4-8.
Elizabeth López is Outreach Librarian for Latino Services in Hillsboro, Oregon. She is a member of the Review 'N Receive program.