Daddy Long Legs

Written by Nadine Brun-Cosme and illustrated by Aurélie Guillerey
Published by Kids Can Press
Ages 3 – 7

longlegs

Nadine Brun-Cosme and Aurélie Guillerey’s new picture book (originally published in French) combines just the right amounts of fantasy and reality in a story about a child’s separation anxiety.

It’s morning, and time for Matthew to go to kindergarten. But daddy’s old green car won’t start.

long

Eventually daddy gets his car started and father and son go zooming over the rolling green hills to school. When they finally get to kindergarten, Matthew is worried:

“What if, this afternoon, the old green car doesn’t start?”

“Then I will come and fetch you in the neighbour’s big red tractor.”

“And if the big red tractor is buys on the farm?”

What proceeds is daddy’s increasingly fantastical list of ways he will pick Matthew up – a polar bear, a boat, a dragon, etc… – and Matthew’s worries as to why these ways won’t work. Eventually, daddy says “I will run as fast as my two long legs will carry me. And in no time, I’ll be right by your side.”

Comparable to The Runaway Bunny, Daddy Long Legs portrays the unshakeable devotion of a parent to their child. This enjoyable picture book takes readers on a jocular jaunt through Matthew’s anxious fantasies, opening and closing with the comforting view of daddy and Matthew’s cozy red brick house, nestled in the background of the illustrations. While Brun-Cosme’s text conveys Matthew’s anxieties, Guillerey’s becomingly off-kilter illustrations of Matthew’s daddy in comically preposterous predicaments help alleviate the tension.

Daddy Long Legs is a unique take on the familiar story of a child’s separation anxiety calmed by a parent’s unconditional love.

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