A Friend for Henry
A Friend for Henry

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Annotation: Henry would like to find a friend at school, but for a boy on the autism spectrum, making friends can be difficult, as his efforts are sometimes misinterpreted, or things just go wrong--but Henry keeps trying, and finally succeeds.
Catalog Number: #209834
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Copyright Date: 2019
Edition Date: 2019
Illustrator: Song, Mika,
Pages: 36
Availability: Available
New Title: Yes
ISBN: Publisher: 1-452-16791-5 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-7594-1
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-1-452-16791-6 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-7594-6
Dewey: E
LCCN: 2018027479
Dimensions: 26 cm.
Language: English
Reviews:
ALA Booklist
Henry, a young boy on the autism spectrum, would like a friend. He appreciates people who are quiet, share his sense of orderliness, and won't invade his personal space. Gilly the goldfish is quiet, but she can't really play; Vivian flashes rainbow fingernails in his face, but complains when Henry makes a rainbow of her paints; and Samuel turns Henry's perfectly aligned carpet squares into a disorderly magic carpet. Luckily, Henry notices Katie, who enjoys watching Gilly do fish things, is happy to build a block tower that excludes the triangles Henry can't bear, and loves swinging at the playground with Henry. Bailey's debut picture book allows readers to empathize with a child who, despite overt differences, has needs that are much the same as everyone else's. Song's ink-and-watercolor illustrations depict a multiethnic, play-centered school. The cartoon art includes many familiar classroom details and works well in conveying Henry's emotional frustrations. As the number of diagnosed children on the autistic spectrum increases, so does the need for informative and positive presentations such as this.
Horn Book
Henry was looking for a friend.
Kirkus Reviews
A boy on the autism spectrum considers his classmates as possible friends."Henry was looking for a friend." The plot is that simple and that complicated. Although it's never specified in the text, Henry's autism can be seen in his behaviors and thoughts. He stands straight and still as the multiracial class convenes, a steady pillar amid the bustle. Henry, who presents East Asian, describes the other children in a manner that gives insight to his point of view: One student is "a tangle of colors," while another is "a thunderstorm." Initially dismissed because she likes the "Big Slide," brown-skinned Katie shares a moment with Henry over the fishbowl. They play together, and readers see Henry standing straight and steady once again but this time looking up with a smile of anticipation as he "waited at the bottom for his friend." Ink-and-watercolor illustrations interpret Henry's point of view well, giving context to his perspective. Song's style allows for small impressions and intentional gaps, like her rough hair textures and the outline of a fishbowl. It is in a state of becoming, like the burgeoning friendship.Whether on the spectrum or not, friends don't have to share everything, just enough, and this book sweetly provides. (Picture book. 3-8)
Publishers Weekly
This quiet story looks on as Henry, a boy on the autism spectrum, interacts with his classmates in search of a friend. With sensitivity and thoughtfulness, Bailey explores Henry-s literal-minded, analytical personality and the way it clashes with some of the other children-s dispositions. When Henry arranges carpet squares for reading time (-All the edges met and the corners fit perfectly-), his classmate Samuel grabs one, insisting that it is a magic carpet. Henry becomes frustrated-the squares were carefully arranged, he says, and they-re -from Rug World. There-s a sticker.- Artwork by Song (Tea with Oliver) captures Henry and his classmates in graceful, economical strokes. When he-s upset, Henry-s eyebrows furrow and his fists clench. Soon, though, he-s watching Gilly the classroom goldfish; another child, Katie, watches the bowl silently opposite him. -She-s shimmery,- says Katie. -But she doesn-t blink,- Henry responds. Young readers will see that Katie is the kind of friend who will give Henry the space and consideration he needs, and they-ll feel his relief. Bailey, the author-s biography explains, is the mother of a child on the autism spectrum, and her portrayal of what autism might feel like from the inside rings true. Ages 5-8. Author-s agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. Illustrator-s agent: Erica Rand Silverman, Stimola Literary Studio. (Feb.)
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
ALA Booklist (2/1/19)
Horn Book
Kirkus Reviews
Publishers Weekly
School Library Journal
Word Count: 544
Reading Level: 2.4
Interest Level: 1-4
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 2.4 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 506317 / grade: Lower Grades
Lexile: 480L
Guided Reading Level: L
Fountas & Pinnell: L

2020 Schneider Family Honor Book

In Classroom Six, second left down the hall, Henry has been on the lookout for a friend. A friend who shares. A friend who listens. Maybe even a friend who likes things to stay the same and all in order, as Henry does. But on a day full of too close and too loud, when nothing seems to go right, will Henry ever find a friend—or will a friend find him? With insight and warmth, this heartfelt story from the perspective of a boy on the autism spectrum celebrates the everyday magic of friendship.


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