The Color Collector

The Color Collector is a poignant story about newness, friendship, and common ground. When a boy notices the new girl picking up all manner of debris and litter on their walks home from school he wants to know why. So she shows him the huge mural she's created in her room that reminds her of the home she left behind. He learns all about where she's come from and they both find how wonderful it is to make a new friend.

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Interest Level Grade 1 - Grade 4
Reading Level Grade 2
Dewey [E]
ATOS Reading Level
Guided Reading Level
Language English
Publisher Sleeping Bear Press
Available Formats Hardcover (9781534111059), PDF (9781534179042), Hosted ebook (9781534179196)
Copyright 2021
Number of Pages 32
Dimensions 9 x 11
Graphics Full-color illustrations

Kirkus Reviews - The Color Collector

A homesick young immigrant collects colorful scraps in an effort to re-create the colors of the home she has left behind.

A muted double-page spread in shades of gray introduces the story, the only touch of color coming from the violet bands holding the braids of a lonely girl on the school playground. From the narrator—another child in the school—readers learn her name is Violet and she is new. They walk home the same way every day, and a quiet, tentative friendship develops between the two. On the walks, Violet picks up colorful cookie wrappers, bits of paper, bottle caps, and leaves, all disappearing into her backpack.

When finally asked the purpose of her collection, Violet extends an invitation to her home and reveals a bedroom exploding with lush colors. Every piece of paper, every leaf, has found a place in the vast collage that encompasses all of her room, depicting the sky, beach, palm trees, and village the homesick child misses so much. “I miss the sounds and smells. And I miss the colors.” Violet having finally confided in someone, readers will see that not just her room, but even the outside is now colorful, and both children are smiling.

A good discussion starter on empathy.

Author: Nicholas Solis

Illustrator: Renia Metallinou

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