Thursday, October 14, 2004

Peace work-a lovely story

Blueberries for the Queen, by John & Katherine Paterson, illustrated by Susan Jeffers, 2004

This is a true family story from John and Katherine Paterson. In 1942 everyone in William's family is helping with the war effort on the homefront. William dreams of helping as a brave knight but his older brother chides him for being too young. When the news arrives that Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands has moved in down the road, he tries to imagine what a real queen looks like and acts like. The royal family had to flee from Holland when the Germans invaded their country.

The fruits and vegetables in the summer garden grow and William finds a way to do "peace work" and touch the heart of Queen Wilhelmina and her family. Susan Jeffers illustrations are beautiful and carry the reader through the story. This is a book and a story that any age will enjoy. It reminded me of Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot with the positive message.

I lived in Holland as a child so Queen Wilhelmina, Princess (later Queen) Juliana and her daughters, Beatrix (the present queen of the Netherlands) and Irene were familiar points of reference to me.

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