If You Want to See a Whale
by Julie Fogliano, illustrated by Erin E. Stead
Roaring Book Press, 2013
Illustrated in the innocence of a child, a young boy, his dog and bird decide they want to see a whale. Patiently they look out upon the ocean, allowing life to happen around them, distracting themselves with their imaginations, until on the very last page they see a whale, but it is not what they expected the whale to look like. They study what they see.
This gentle story speaks to the heart, inviting it to be patient and open to what one sees. For when we look with expectations, we may miss the beauty before us. The story opens the minds of readers to be aware of the richness around them.