Chester Raccoon and the Acorn Full of Memories
Chester Raccoon’s good friend Skiddel Squirrel has had an accident and will not be returning – ever.
Chester is upset that he won’t get to play with his friend anymore. Mrs. Raccoon suggests that Chester and his friends create some memories of Skiddel, so that they will have good memories when they miss him. Chester, his brother Ronny, and their friends decide to gather at the pond, where they combine their memories and create a touching celebration of their friend’s life.
Many young children must face the loss of loved ones or the need to attend a funeral. This sweet story will help children to understand the positive purpose behind memorial services and how “making memories” can provide cheer and comfort when missing an absent loved one.
Picture Book | Ages 3 – 7
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-933718-29-3 | 32 pages | $16.95
Lexile level: 660 | Guided reading level: M | Grade level: 2-3 | Reading Recovery level: 20
Meet the Author & Illustrator
Audrey Penn takes her one-woman educational program, the Writing Penn, into schools, libraries, and children’s hospitals where she shapes and refines her story ideas in partnership with kids. She is also highly sought after as a conference keynote speaker by groups of teachers and other professionals who work with children.
An award-winning illustrator, Barbara Leonard Gibson has been a freelance artist in the Baltimore-Washington area for twenty-five years. Originally from New York, and with a degree in Fine Art and Design from Carnegie Mellon University, she has worked in many areas including historical illustration, children’s books, and magazines, cartooning, portraiture, wildlife illustration, natural sciences, advertising, fantasy, and science fiction.
All Books in The Kissing Hand Series
Chester Raccoon and the Acorn Full of Memories Reviews
“When Chester returns home from school, he tells his mother that the teacher said Skiddil Squirrel had an accident and would not be coming back. Mrs. Raccoon explains that his classmate’s “heart quit beating and his body didn’t work any more.” She comforts her sad child by suggesting that he “make a memory of Skiddil Squirrel.” The two start out for the squirrel’s favorite place, and other animal friends join them. At the butterfly pond, Chester tells stories about how Skiddil loved butterflies and how he buried acorns for winter, but never found them. When Mrs. Raccoon points to a grove of young oak trees, Chester exclaims, “The forest made a Skiddil Squirrel memory!” Then he picks up an acorn to take home with him. Simple, direct dialogue demonstrates the love between this mother and child. Bright, stylized illustrations on high-gloss pages depict the animals with human emotions, convey warmth, and reinforce the text. Despite the tough subject, this fifth book in the series that began with The Kissing Hand (Child Welfare League of America, 1993) has a reassuring tone and provides an opening for a discussion on death and remembering loved ones.”
—School Library Journal
“Beautifully illustrated and with lots of saturated color, this book will keep youngsters’ attention and maybe help them through a confusing time.”
—Baton Rouge Advocate
“This may sound like a dark subject, but it is handled so well and with such beautiful artwork that it provides a cushion of comfort”