As a reading teacher, I hold picture books that affirm the benefits of reading close to my heart. Reading such books aloud to my students provides opportunities to discuss why reading is important and the ways in which it can be transformative. How to Catch a Clover Thief is one of my new favorite books because it will spark these discussions, but also because it is a whole lot of fun.
Roy is a boar who has found a delicious clover patch and, knowing he must patiently wait for it to bloom, gives Jarvis, a gopher, a warning to stay away from it. The seemingly considerate Jarvis offers Roy books while he waits, but the gesture turns out to be anything but sincere. When he realizes that Jarvis has outsmarted him, Roy looks to a book for help and puts his own ingenious plan to protect his clover into action.
Although sly and conniving, both Roy and Jarvis manage to be delightfully charming. Their antics, especially the way in which Roy solves his problem, will amuse readers. A humorous tale that shows how useful the right book can be.
Check out this video to listen to Elise Parsley discuss illustrations in her book and the reason that Roy and Jarvis ended up as a wild boar and a gopher rather than a bear and a raccoon.