A parent’s love for their child cannot be measured. We know this-but do our little ones? How do we even go about explaining it? Author Sam Mcbratney’s charming book ‘Guess How Much I Love You’ addresses that very question, and gives parents a place to start when it comes to trying to convey their love in words.
Guess How Much?
With a gentle twist on the theme of ‘anything you can do, I can do better,’ Little Nutbrown Hair seeks to show his father, Big Nutbrown Hare, just how much he loves him. But even when he stretches his arms to their fullest (I love you this much!) or hops his highest (I love you as high as I can jump!) he is tenderly outdone by Big Nutbrown Hare, who’s longer arms and stronger legs can better show his expansive love. When bedtime finally rolls around Little Nutbrown Hare thinks he’s finally able to show how much he loves his father by saying that he loves him all the way to the moon. But after he’s gone to sleep Big Nutbrown Hare, who of course let’s Little Nutbrown Hare think he’s won their little game, whispers one final thing that shows that nothing can extend beyond a parents love.
Illustrator Anita Jeram fills the pages of this book with heartwarming, pastel watercolors that show the tender relationship between Big Nutbrown Hare and his son. The rabbits are expressive and are drawn to show their feelings for one another perfectly. Little Nutbrown Hare is almost always bouncing around, filled with a childlike exuberance, while Big Nutbrown Hare is stiller and gives off an aura of the patience that only a parent can possess.
Growing up I was much closer to my Dad than my Mom, so I loved reading a book that features a Dad being the one who is expressing how much he loves his little one. I used to tell my Dad I loved him more than all the grains of sand in the world, so the determination that Little Nutbrown Hare feels to express and measure his love is familiar to me. I think I also used to say something along the lines of “I love you more than all the flecks of dirt in the world”…how touching that one must have been for my Dad. Little Nutbrown Hare put it better than me, that’s for sure. I think it goes without saying that this book can also be applied to mothers as well. This is a very pleasant story to read, and one that I would recommend for parents with younger children (toddler age) too much older than that and it probably wouldn’t hold their attention for very long.
This is a children’s book that seeks to measure the immeasurable, the love between a parent and their child, and I think it does so- all in the frame of about 15 pages.