Look at the cover of the picture book, The Little Forest Keepers by Mary Lundquist, and you really get all you need to know about what you will find inside. It is old fashioned, with cute, pastel colors. You know that there will be a sweet story about love, friendship, caring, coming together. And that is all true.
However, there is a bit more to Lundquist’s book. It is the journey of our main characters, Ash and Pudd. They, of course, take care of their friends (be they cover in fur, feathers, or bark) whenever they can. They are kind and generous. But when a stranger comes to town, what will they do? You, the adult reader, know that they will treat this stranger as a friend they have not yet met. You know that kindness to strangers is as important as kindness to our friends. Child readers/listeners (best 5 and up, but younger could do) will wait to find out.
This is a cozy book. It is friendly and has little in the way of, “WOW THAT WAS A SURPRISE!” But still, it is enjoyable and fun. The action is minimal, but it should make you happy. The art truly is the draw to the overall enjoyment. They can be read without the text. They can move the story along with their simplicity and while there is not a lot on the page, you are never missing out.
Lundquist made a story that, while it might not become a CLASSIC, it most likely will become a personal classic for most people.