Lenny & Lucy
Lenny & Lucy, written by Philip C. Stead and illustrated by Erin E. Stead, is an adorable tale of young Peter who moves with his dog and father to a new house near the woods and over a bridge. The woods are spooky, and Peter is scared, so he creates a guardian of the bridge named Lenny. The guardian is made of pillows and blankets stitched together. He sits and watches the forest to make sure bad things don’t come out.
Peter and his dog spend time sitting with Lenny and feel safer. But soon Peter can’t sleep again because he worries Lenny is lonely sitting out at the bridge all by himself, so he creates Lucy. Lucy is made of autumn leaves and blankets and becomes Lenny’s friend, and they both sit at the bridge but they have each other.
In time, Peter gains a real friend—Millie—from next door, and soon Millie and Peter join Lenny and Lucy for watching for interesting things from the forest, which is no longer so scary.
Lenny & Lucy is a simple storybook well done with beautiful grayscale illustrations and selective color. Mr. Stead has written a book that examines fear and loneliness in new situations and how to overcome them, and also how what once seemed scary may seem interesting with a new perspective. This is a great book for children who have just had their living environments changed or who may be scared of the dark and unknown. The recommended age range for readers is 3–7.