Guess How Much I Love You
written by Sam McBratney
illustrated by Anita Jeram

Sam McBratney's Guess How Much I Love You
illustrated by Anita Jeram

Children's book review by Steve Barancik

Ages 0-5

A children's book about love and expressing it

So how did this modest little picture book, published in 1994, become one of the most popular picture books of all time? Well, here's the dirty little secret. Are you ready? Keep this quiet...

Parents buy it for perfectly wonderful but selfish reasons.

It's true. Young children who have had Guess How Much I Love You read to them quickly start engaging in a delightful game of one upsmanship with parents about who loves whom more! If you've never heard your child say,

I love you over the hills, to the moon, under the ocean, around the mountains, behind that duck and back again...

...then you're missing something and you're going to want to get this book!

Little Nutbrown Hare wants to show his dad how much he loves him, so he spreads his arms wide. But when Big Nutbrown Hare shows how much he loves his son, his grown-up arms go that much wider.

So starts the competition. A competition of love. Review continues.

from Guess How Much I Love You, facing pages cropped, text repositioned

Kids eat this up, and parents are so into it that a plethora Guess How Much and Nutbrown Hare products have been spawned.

Now parents, if you're going to buy or borrow this sweet book, you have some obligations! When your child tells you how much he or she loves you, you have to play along and do the same thing. Remember: 'Tis better to give than receive.

If you want to create a home environment where your children are comfortable expressing and hearing and talking about love, then Guess How Much I Love You is a book every family member needs to be familiar with.

Read more of Steve's reviews.

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