Teddy is not Miss Thompson's favorite student. He doesn't focus in class, his homework is never complete, and he comes to school unkempt. When, at Christmas, Teddy gives Miss Thompson a bottle of cheap perfume and a rhinestone bracelet with half the stones missing, Miss Thompson is confused-until she discovers that these items had belonged to his recently deceased mother. Miss Thompson's profound realization changes her attitude and behavior forever; in turn, young Teddy begins to truly blossom. The Bracelet is a heartwarming story of how one person can deeply affect another person's life, and it will touch everyone who reads it.
Miriam de Rosier is a native of Washington State. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Brigham Young University. Ms. de Rosier works as a freelance illustrator; her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal.
De Rosier makes her debut with this small-format gift book that adapts "The Special Story of Miss Thompson" (which first appeared in Who Switched the Price Tags?). A statement from Miss Thompson, the teacher, opens the book: "Boys and girls, I love you all the same. I have no favorites." But the unnamed narrator immediately detracts her remarks: "Teachers do have favorites and, what is worse, most teachers have students that they just don't like." Fifth grader Teddy is one of them. A rundown of his former teachers' reports reveals that he has a "poor home situation," a mother who was seriously ill and subsequently died and a father who "shows no interest." Sequential paintings show Teddy sitting on his mother's lap in a comfy armchair to read a story, then on the next page the chair is empty. The unadorned paintings resemble pleasant folk-art in their attention to simple patterns and slightly off-kilter perspectives. Yet the artwork remains rather static and wooden, a curious counterpoint to the story's sentimentality and overbearing tone. At Christmas, Teddy gives his teacher a bracelet with missing stones and a "bottle of cheap perfume." After the boy confides, "Miss Thompson, you smell just like my mother. And her bracelet looks real pretty on you, too," she asks God to forgive her, and becomes "a different teacher." With the special attention she pays to Teddy, his schoolwork improves dramatically, and causes positive reverberations henceforth. Though it may appeal to adults who work with youngsters as a cautionary tale, this heavy-handed story sends a mixed message to children. Ages 8-up.