Project Description

Paper Planes
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Paper Planes

by Jim Helmore
illustrated by Richard Jones

A compassionate and lyrical story of staying in touch after a friend has moved away

Mia and Ben are the very best of friends. They live side by side at the edge of a great, wide lake. Together they sail, swing, and sing. But what they love doing most of all is making paper planes. They dream of one day being able to make a plane that can fly all the way across the lake! But Ben has terrible news: he and his family are moving far away. How are Mia and Ben going to stay best friends if they’re going to be so far apart? And will flying paper planes ever be the same again without Ben?

From the author and illustrator team who gave readers The Snow Lion, gorgeous illustrations accompany a gentle story about long-distance friendship that is filled with magic and imagination.

Format: Hardcover
Price: $17.99
ISBN: 978-1-68263-161-4
Publication Date: 3/1/2020
Page Count: 32
Size: 1″ x 9-5/8″
Age Range: 4 – 8
Language: English
F&P: M, Gr 2, Genre RF
Lexile: AD580L
Themes: Connections, Grief, Friendship, Moving Away
BISAC 1: JUV039060 JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Friendship
BISAC 2: JUV039050 JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Emotions & Feelings
BISAC 3: JUV051000 JUVENILE FICTION / Imagination & Play


“Helmore’s spare, expressive text gives the children’s close friendship the respect it deserves in this heartfelt story of love, separation, and reconnection….handsome illustrations… A quiet, comforting picture book that will resonate with its audience.” —Booklist

“Parents and educators will especially appreciate how the protagonists’ feelings are depicted in a realistic and convincing manner—and the validation that sadness and anger are OK. The book’s inspiring ending makes it a good resource for children experiencing separation issues…. A beautiful and sensitive treatment of a common childhood experience.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Helmore modulates emotions well… Expansive and warm with emotion, Jones’s illustrations lend dreamy poignancy to Helmore’s straightforward prose. A familiar childhood challenge surmounted with well-pitched emotional resonance from the creators of The Snow Lion.” —Publishers Weekly

“Pair this story with Libby Gleeson’s Half a World Away for group sharing about ways to deal with separation and other disappointments.” —School Library Journal

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“A meditative, uplifting tale about imagination, resourcefulness and new beginnings that’s sure to inspire an uptick in paper-airplane making.” —BookPage

“The illustrations are beautifully done and help captivate the reader while bringing the magic of the story to life. This is a touching tale that extends well beyond the recommended age level.” —School Library Connection

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Meet the Author

Jim Helmore

Jim Helmore has written several picture books. He works in the licensing industry and loves to grow vegetables in his spare time. He lives in England.

Meet the Illustrator

Richard Jones

Richard Jones has more than 20 years of experience in the creative arts with a PhD in graphic communication. In his spare time, Richard enjoys bobbing about in the sea, feeding the cat, and licorice. He lives in England.