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Richelle Villabona

Book Review: May I Bring a Friend?

3 min read

Bibliographical Data

May I Bring a Friend?

Author: Beatrice Schenk De Regniers

Illustrator: Beni Montresor

Publisher: Antheneum Books for Young Readers

Publishing Date: 1964

Age Range: 3-7

ISBN:  978-0-689-20615-3

May I Bring a Friend? is a Caldecott Medal recipient of 1965 that tells the story about a young boy who gets invited to visit the king and queen for different occasions.  Each time, the boy would politely ask the king and queen if he may bring a friend, and each time, the king and queen say yes.  As the story continues, the boy would bring different types of animals to the parties, who are as polite and kind as the boy.

Author Biography
Beatrice Schenk De Regniers is an American author born in Lafayette, Indiana, on August 16, 1914.  Her most well know books are May I Bring a Friend?; What Can You Do with A Shoe; Everyone is Good for Something.  She attended the University of Illinois, then the University of Chicago for her graduate study.  In 1941, she attended the Winnetka Graduate Teachers College.  She was a member of the Authors Guild, Authors League of America, Society of Children’s Book Writers, and many more.  She died in her home in Washington, D.C. on March 1, 2000

May I Bring a Friend? is wonderful picture book for all ages who enjoy a laugh and a surprise.  The young boy brings light to a time of well-mannered and behaved children with entertaining friends.  The cover of the book leaves a clue for the readers to guess what kind of friends this young boy has.  The book is written with pattern and movement that readers continue to flip the pages to meet the friend’s of this boy and the reactions of the king and queen.

Analysis of Literary Element
In May I Bring a Friend?, there are two dominant literary elements of beautiful illustrations, and pattern and rhyme.  Readers can enjoy the setting and background of the get togethers and silly characters dancing around the pages.  Young children will be interested to find out who this little boy brings to the party next and find a new, or a few, happy faces.  Pattern is achieved by the continuous sequence of the boy getting invited by the king and queen, the boy asking them if he could bring a friend, their response, and the different guests each time.  Rhyming words are included to keep the fluidity of the story going and added fun.