You Are Special
By Max Lucado
Illustrated by Sergio MartinezReview by: Angela Vargas
This is a beautiful story, illustrating God’s unconditional love for each of us. It also teaches that only what you and God think, matters; not what everyone else thinks. The story begins with a woodcarver named, Eli. He has carved an entire village of wooden people called Wemmicks. They are, of course, human-like, in that they each look and behave differently. There are tall ones and short ones, big noses and small noses, shiny paint and peeling paint. Each and every day, the Wemmicks spend their time on one task: distributing stickers amongst themselves. There are two kinds. There are stars for the pretty and talented ones. There are gray dots for the not so pretty and talented ones. A young fellow by the name of Punchinello has somehow managed to collect a mass number of gray dots, and sadly, no stars. Other Wemmicks continually bombarded Punchinello with comments about how he obviously wasn’t a good Wemmick. He soon came to believe them. One day he met a beautiful young Wemmick that surprisingly had not only no dots, but no stars either! He could not figure this out. Her name was Lucia. Wemmicks had tried to give her stickers, but they would only fall off. Punchinello decided that was how he wanted to be; “I don’t want anyone else’s marks.” He asked Lucia how she did it. She told him to go see Eli. Now, Punchinello had no idea who Eli was and that he had created him. He was nervous and afraid when he entered Eli’s house, but Eli soon bestilled his fears. Eli explained that he loved Punchinello because he had made him and that only what he thought mattered. The Wemmicks are just like you he said, and have no right to judge you. I think you are pretty special, Eli told him. No one had ever treated Punchinello this way and he was not quite sure how to react. Eli continued on to explain that the stickers only stick if you let them. As Punchinello left, he thought about all that Eli had told him, and one, solitary sticker floated to the ground.
I highly recommend this book for ages 4-7.