Love, Violet

Love, Violet cover
Love, Violet by Charlotte Sullivan Wild. Illustrated by Charlene Chua

By Charlotte Sullivan Wild
Illustrated by Charlene Chua
Farrar Straus Giroux, 2021
32 pages

Ages 4-8

There’s only one classmate who makes “Violet’s heart skip,” and that’s brown-skinned Mira. In Violet’s imagination, she “astound[s] Mira with heroic feats” and embarks on adventures with her. In reality, whenever Mira begins a conversation with her (which she often does), Violet finds herself shy and tongue-tied. Instead, Violet makes Mira a valentine: a simple, glittery heart that says “For Mira. Love, Violet.” On Valentine’s Day, Violet has finally worked up the courage to give it to Mira when Mira startles her. The resulting classroom commotion makes Violet run away in embarrassment. Alone during recess, Violet hears Mira’s laughter—a “laugh that warmed Violet down into her boots” —and realizes that Mira is the only person who has complimented her hat, the only one who didn’t laugh at her when she fell, and the only one who’s ever “asked her to play horses.” She thinks she might have a chance after all. And, even after the wind blows the heart out of her grasp and beneath the stampeding feet of several classmates, Mira loves the valentine—crushed or not—and surprises Violet with a gift of her own. Shades of yellow and, appropriately, violet suffuse the watercolor illustrations with warmth and softness. Violet, who presents white, sports a short, reddish-purple hairdo and cowboy hat. ©2022 Cooperative Children’s Book Center