Praise for BECAUSE from School Library Journal

TORREY, Richard. Because. illus. by author. unpaged. CIP. HarperCollins. June 2011. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-0-06-156173-3. LC 2010010510. PreS-Gr 1–Young Jack promises to show examples of why “because” is a “real answer.” Amusing drawings and the boy’s single-sentence clarifications for questionable behavior justify why cereal is spread across the floor, why the dog is in time-out, and why boy and dog are covered in strawberry icing. Readers don’t truly learn why Jack is swathed in Band-Aids, but Torrey skillfully counterpoints scenes such as the child relinquishing his teddy and blanket, then reclaiming the toy “Because he needs me.” The final “because” effectively wraps up the tale, as Jack gently embraces his tethered tail-wagging pooch: “Because sometimes I have to play with my other friends.” Torrey paints scenes of a suburban family with a fully stocked kitchen and toy chest, a beach vacation, and an iPod. The story will allow youngsters to recall fondly their own “because” moments.–Gay Lynn Van Vleck, Henrico County Library, Glen Allen, VA