Title: The Silver Balloon
Author: Susan Bonners
Major Themes: Friendship
Synopsis: When he let a balloon go into the sky, Gregory hoped for a reply—but he had no idea that his life would be changed forever!
The Silver Balloon was one of those unexpected winners that we read this year. At the beginning of the school year, I bought a new kindergarten/1st grade course from Sonlight, and that meant a lot of new read-alouds that I had never heard of before. We have ended up liking all of them, but this one was especially good. I’ll be very happy to read it again in four or five years when my youngest is ready for it!
Gregory lived in a tall apartment building in a large city. He had gotten a helium balloon, and decided to send it off into the sky with a note attached, hoping to someday find out where it ended up. He had nearly given up hope when, a few weeks later, a letter arrived for him! A farmer in the next state had found it—and sent him a mysterious piece of a plant! What could it be? When Gregory figured out what it was, he sent a reply, along with something from his life.
Gregory and his new friend continued to write back and forth, each time sending bits of their lives for the other to figure out. Sometimes, Gregory and his friend Tommy had to ask many people for help before they could solve the mysteries. Then one day the farmer sent Gregory something so special that it changed both their lives.
The Silver Balloon is a wonderful story about friendship. Two friendships are described, both Gregory and Tommy, and Gregory and Mr. Mayfield. It is really special to watch that friendship grow through the exchange of letters and small gifts. The adventure side of the story is fun, too—what child wouldn’t want to hear about what happens when a balloon is sent into the sky? This book is a delightful addition to our shelves!
Listening Level—Ages 5 – 8, Family Friendly
Reading Independently—Ages 7 – 9, 8 – 12