A House: A Picture Book

Image of A House
Release Date: 
September 28, 2021
Greenwillow Books
Reviewed by: 

“Both simple and engaging.”

Beloved award-winning author-illustrator Kevin Henkes offers a book that is both simple and engaging. The first pages all focus on a house, asking the reader a series of questions:

“A house.

Where is the door?

What color is it?

Where is the window?

What shape is it?”

The house is drawn much as a child would: a box with a roof, rectangle chimney, another rectangle door, and a circular window. As the pages turn, more questions are asked, all ones easy for a child to answer, all focusing on physical elements of the house. Time passes and we see a house in the sun, a house at night, a house in the rain, a house in the snow.

After setting up this rhythm of call and response, questions asked and answered, there’s a sudden shift. 

“Look! Here comes a dog. Here comes a cat. Here come some people.”

And then something magical happens: The house becomes a home.

With the sparest of text, the simplest of pictures, a whole world is evoked. What makes a house a home? And what could be inside? Creative readers will want to draw the home inside the house. Henkes has shown them how to do it and what kind of questions they can ask.