Sunday, January 19, 2020

Review - With a Little Help from My Friends

With a Little Help from My Friends
by John Lennon & Paul McCartney
illustrated by Henry Cole
Date: 2019
Publisher: Little Simon
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 40
Format: e-book
Source: library

Celebrate friendship with this lyrical picture book that beautifully illustrates John Lennon and Paul McCartney’s world-renowned words from “With a Little Help from My Friends.”

I get by with a little help from my friends…

In this gorgeously illustrated picture book, the universally loved words to “With a Little Help from My Friends” come vividly to life, showing that sometimes, all you need is a little help from your friends!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This is a lovely little book about friendship. Taking the 1967 song as its starting point, the book weaves a story about two young girls and their friendship as it faces a major challenge.

The illustrations by Henry Cole are really adorable. They're mostly in black and white, with just a few touches of colour. I think they were my favourite part of the book and, to be honest, this probably could've been a wordless picture book and it would've worked just as well. The song lyrics did seem a bit forced in a few places, and I'm not sure if "I get high with a little help from my friends" is entirely appropriate for a picture book (the illustrations cleverly use a kite at that point, so it's probably only older kids who will giggle over the "get high" reference).

I've read other books that take old songs and turn them into picture books (e.g., What the World Needs Now Is Love and The Circle Game), but this is one of the strongest I've read so far. Highly recommended to Beatles fans or readers who are seeking out books on friendship.

Quotable moment:

Premise: 4/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 3/5
Illustrations: 4/5
Originality: 4/5

Enjoyment: 4/5

Overall: 3.83 out of 5

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