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I Love You the Purplest [Hardcover]

Barbara M. Joosse , Mary Whyte
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 19.99
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Book Description

Sept. 30 1996
Early in the evening two young brothers and their mama finish supper in the sturdy red cabin and set out to fish. While digging for worms, rowing the boat and pulling in fish, each brother asks his mama which one is the best at each task and, as they are being tucked into bed, which one she loves the best.
Barbara Joosse's heartwarming text is beautifully complimented by Mary Whyte's engaging watercolor illustrations. Readers will delight in the tender message that every child holds a special place in a parent's heart.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Further probing the theme of her Mama, Do You Love Me?, Joosse's resonant tale spotlights two young sons on a fishing expedition with their mother; each boy is angling to be tops with Mom. Clearly an experienced peacemaker, Mama offers just the right answers when the boys inquire which of them, for example, is the best rower: "Why, Julian, you took the deepest strokes. And Max, your strokes were fastest." As she tucks them into bed that night, they each pose the ultimate question: "Who do you love best?" She loves one the "bluest," the other the "reddest"; it is up to presiding adults to explain how these add up to the "purplest." Though it hovers on the cloying, Joosse's image-laden narrative makes for a soothing bedtime read-aloud. Gracefully moving from naturalistic panoramas to close-ups of the cherubic-looking brothers, Whyte's (Boomer's Big Day) watercolors amplify the story's considerable emotional pitch. Combining lifelike images of the characters with abstract impressions of twilit skies or lakeside woods, the art encapsulates the lyricism of the text. Ages 3-8.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 2. Two young brothers head out with their mother in a rowboat for an evening of fishing. They ask her to tell them who is better at digging worms, rowing, and catching fish, and later, back in their cabin at bedtime, they ask whom she loves the best. With each answer the caring mother assures both boys that they are equally skilled and equally loved. "I love you the bluest" she tells thoughtful, methodical Julian, "the color of a cave...splash of a waterfall...hush of a whisper." To peripatetic, energetic Max, she says, "I love you the reddest...the color of sky before it blazes into night." The final double-page spread, illustrating their cabin at night, is awash with purples; and so, she loves both "the purplest." The text effectively conveys movement with vigorous verbs and uses expressive phrases. Clues to each boy's character and temperament are provided. The glowing double-page watercolors, rendered in greens, blues, golds, reds, and purples, evoke the night's activities. The striking use of light, particularly the lantern in the boat and the stars, creates interest as do the effective compositions and varied perspectives. Occasionally some of the figures are awkwardly painted, but this is a minor flaw. Like the author's Mama, Do You Love Me? (Chronicle, 1991), this reassuring book, good for story time or one-to-one sharing, will encourage families to think of their own superlative expressions of love.?Cynthia K. Richey, Mt. Lebanon Public Library, Pittsburgh, PA
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book March 10 2003
By A Customer
This book is about a mama and her two sons: Max and Julian who are always in competition with each other. One night they decide to go dig up worms and go fishing.
Max and Julian are asking their mother who has the most worms and she replies Max has the liveliest and Julian has the juiciest. Next they row there boat out to prepare for fishing. Julian asks who is the best rower, and she responds Julian has the deepest strokes and Maxï¿s were the fastest. The mother loves each of her children in a special and unique way. She tells each of them that her love for them resembles a color. She tells Max that she loves him the bluest like the mist of a mountain, splash of a waterfall, and the hush of a whisper. She tells Julian that she loves him the reddest like the color of the sky, and the campfireï¿s flame. I think she had a unique way of explaining to the boys how she loved them. The way she told them resembled their personalities to her. I enjoyed this book very much and would recommend it because it has an interesting point and is written in a way that the boys can understand. The ways she expresses her love can be very easily understood by the children. ~ Katelyn Carson
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5.0 out of 5 stars Will you love this book? April 26 2001
Any parent with more than one child eventually faces the question of "who do you love the most." This book centers on a mother and her two sons and the repeated comparisons the two boys make with one another. "Who is the best at...?" and "Who do you love the most?" are some of the questions directed at this mom by her sons. The answers are both touching and provoking - to both the child and parent reading the book. It is a unique approach to teaching the concept of boundless love and the limitless love flowing from a parent to a child.
The book is of very good quality, especially the art work. Whyte's illustrations are full of warm colors and touching images, and the artwork dominates each page to add to the story. The artwork also avoids any taboos such as huge homes, lots of toys laying around or inappropriate images. The story itself is easy enough reading for a child who is past the basic reading level, and the words are printed large enough where a parent and child(ren) can all see the words & pictures together as the story is read. Finally, the length is not taxing on the attention of young children (3 to 5), but the charming story is not cut short either. You will love this book and the lesson it teaches.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book! June 12 2000
Wow! Sometimes you read a book and think, "This was written just for me." That's how I felt when I read this one. I have four children who were born within six years of each other, and at times the sibling rivalry can be quite intense. My kids ask, "Who do you love the best?" The standard answer of "I love you all exactly the same" isn't exactly true. I love them all immensely just because they are mine, but I also love each of them differently because each one is unique. Barbara M. Joosse conveys this in her story of a summer evening that a mother and her two sons spend at a lakeside cabin. From the opening lines about hunting for bait, she makes it obvious that these two boys have distinct personalities: "Max exploded from the cabin, twirling the shovel in front of him. Mama came next, and then Julian. Julian shut the cabin door tightly to keep it safe from burglars and bears." Whenever the boys ask their mother who is the best, she gives them an answer that allows them both to be special. Max catches the liveliest worms, and Julian catches the juiciest; Julian is the rower with the deepest strokes, and Max is the rower with the fastest. When each boy asks, "Mama, who do you love the best?" She answers by giving them each a color of love that matches his personality. Julian is the bluest. Max is the reddest. Each boy is thrilled with her answer.
Mary Whyte's illustrations are a beautiful complement to the story. The pictures fill each two page spread with the soft colors of a summer evening. The mother and sons are strikingly real. I look at Max and Julian and see my own boys, one overflowing with exuberant energy, the other cooler and more reflective.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Purplest Is Best! Feb. 19 1998
By A Customer
I am a Youth Services Librarian who adores the color purple. When I read this title in our OPAC, I was beyond excited! Then I went to the shelf, pulled the book, and began to read it... It is a very touching story of a Mom and her two boys, each as different as day and night. One is energetic and eager; the other is more reserved and determined. At the end of a busy evening, after much excitement and activity, the mother brings her sons home, cleans them up, tells them stories, then puts them to bed. Each son, in turn, asks whom she loves the best. She tells the first son that she loves him the reddest, and the second son the bluest (combining the two ends of the spectrum to create the purplest love possible). A sweet story, especially for parents with more than one child "competing" for a parent's love and attention. If you don't buy this one, you should at least try to check it out at the local library or book store.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great book for Mom's to share with their children!
Published 4 months ago by cathy macleod
5.0 out of 5 stars Every mom should read this to their children!
This is the perfect gift to give to a new big brother or sister. I bought it when we had our second baby, and it has the perfect message. My children love this book as well.
Published on July 14 2004 by Mom of 4 in VA
5.0 out of 5 stars Can I give it 100 stars?
I LOVE THIS BOOK!!!!! What a great message! The kids love it too.
Published on Feb. 7 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Answer to An Oft Asked Question
My children ask this regularly, especially my six-year-old Emma.
"Who do you love the best?"
She wants so badly to be loved "the best". Read more
Published on Jan. 26 2004 by Julie Jordan Scott
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Answer to a Common-Heartful Question
My children ask this regularly, especially my six-year-old Emma.
She wants so badly to be loved "the best". Read more
Published on Jan. 24 2004 by Julie Jordan Scott
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for siblings
My daughter (2.5 yrs) received this as a gift when my son was born and LOVES it. We read it together everyday (by her request) and it has become a standard gift whenever a friend... Read more
Published on Dec 12 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful rendition of the uniqueness of a mothers love...
I finally found a book about a mother with two boys! I mentioned to my sister-in-law how competitive my boys are for my praise and love. She suggested I buy this book. Read more
Published on Jan. 11 2002 by Gatzpup
5.0 out of 5 stars Very grateful to the friend who introduced us to this book.
This is the kind of book you want to own. Know what I mean? So you can pull it out and revel in it whenever the mood strikes. Read more
Published on Aug. 24 2001 by Kyla Boyse
5.0 out of 5 stars a great gift for a Mom and for her children!
I bought this to give to my best friend who has two sons. She loved it! The book has a very special message for children...that Mom loves them both...equally, yet differently. Read more
Published on July 20 2001
I have this book and I often read it with my two daughters. I love the message in it ----- that each child is equally but differently loved. Read more
Published on Jan. 4 2001 by "tmtaylor@usit.net"
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