I Am Henry Finch

I Am Henry Finch

Book - 2015
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Bravery plays out in surprising ways when a little finch starts having big thoughts.

The finches live in a big flock that makes such a racket nobody can hear themselves think. But one day a small bird wakes up in quiet darkness and has a thought, and he hears it: I am Henry Finch. . . . I could be great. The next day, the Beast comes, and Henry sees his chance--but then a mouth opens wide, and the path to greatness turns out to have some unexpected twists. Delightful illustrations pair with a quirky, funny, and uplifting story for budding philosophers of all ages.
Publisher: Somerville, Massachusetts :, Candlewick Press,, 2015.
Edition: First U.S. edition.
ISBN: 9780763678128
Branch Call Number: JP Deaco
Characteristics: 1 volume (unpaged) : colour illustrations
Additional Contributors: Schwarz, Viviane

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laurendouglass Jan 30, 2019

We read through 20-30 new picture books every month with our 5 year old.  (Thank you, THANK YOU, Dear Library!)  And though almost every new book is his "favorite", at least for a night or two, something special happened when my husband and son read I am Henry Finch together before bed one evening.

You see, Henry Finch starts out as an average bird, almost exactly like every other charimingly rendered thumbprint-based finch in his flock.  But soon, he wakes, and then awakens, and realizes that he exists.  And can think.  And that quite possibly he is an amazing finch!

I am Henry Finch is the rare, philosophical picture book that entertains, engages and enlightens.  As my husband read aloud Henry Finch's discovery of death, birth, individualism and community, my son, who often can't sit still, remained not only seated but nearly rooted to his seat, as his face waxed through looks of introspection, mild horror and eventually existential shock.  And after the book was finished, when my husband asked my son what he thought, he said simply "Again."   And they read it again.

And since then, every morning, and every evening, we have read I am Henry Finch again, and again, and again.  More than any other picture book we have ever read, even Goodnight Moon.

If you follow my advice and try the book, read it through in its entirety, even though the story seems a bit dicey at times.  I can't give anything away but let's just say that Henry Finch makes a very impassioned plea for vegetarianism after a personally alarming experience.  Because of this I can see some parents and caretakers being afraid to push on through the story, but please try.  I promise the payoff is worth it. The ideas explored in the book are very accessible and intriguing to children and Henry Finch is a great introduction to thinking and philosophy.

mallc Jan 05, 2016

Philosophy and finches! Can't go wrong.

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