Foreword Reviews

Pairs of People

Clarion Rating: 4 out of 5

People work together toward a common goal in the inspirational picture book Pairs of People.

In Jeanne and Mark K. Shriver’s powerful picture book Pairs of People, children work together to make the world a better place.

This spirited rhyming text shows people of all ages coming together to make a difference in the lives of others. Doing good deeds together, it suggests, is fun. Each lively stanza features a different helping activity: people clear a neighbor’s walk on a snowy day or work together to cook and serve food for those in need. The number of helpers grows at an exponential rate throughout: in increasing numbers, people are shown responding to disasters and otherwise assisting their neighbors.

The dynamic, expressive illustrations feature diverse characters and depict realistic situations in which they offer others help. They expand upon the information given in the brief text as they show people recovering after natural disasters, working on community improvement projects, engaging in prison outreach work, and participating in sports events. Audiences are invited to find and count the pairs of helpers in each complex image; the pairs are distinguishable because of their clothing choices, which set them apart from others in their scenes. There’s also an encouragement to count the total number of helpers involved in each activity that involves multiplying the number of pairs by two. As the pairs of friends grow into larger groups, the pictures and the math become more complex. Also as the number of pairs grows, an additional activity arrives: the book asks its audience to imagine what might happen if even larger numbers of people were to join together to make a difference.

Inviting others to engage in service work, Pairs of People is an inspiring picture book that celebrates community spirit, friendship, and the joy of helping others.

Reviewed by Kristine Morris

Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The publisher of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Reviews make no guarantee that the publisher will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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