#543 – Two Hands to Love You by Diane Adams & Paige Keiser


Two Hands to Love You

by Diane Adams & Paige Keiser, illustrator

Chronicle Books      2014


Age 4 to 8     36 pages


“With two loving hands, an adoring mother cradles her baby after bath time and a devoted father introduces his toddler to the wonders of he world. Sister, brother, grandma, and grandpa all can’t wait to share what they love best about the world with their newest family member. And when it is time to step ot into the world, this caring family is right there alongside. In simple, heartfelt language, this soothing picture book for the very young will tug at the heartstrings and remind us all of the caring hands that helped us along our way.”


“When the world is a strange place, unfamiliar and new,

my two hands will hold you, will carry you through.”

The Story

In a nutshell, the story is about a couple who begin a family and the paths they take with their children as they grow and become a family of five—plus two involved grandparents. The first baby is gently cared for, everything new for everyone, not just the baby. As he grows, mom plays outside with her toddler, pulling him in a wagon after an afternoon bath in the sun.

Dad takes over, playing airplane with his son, then cradles the new baby and pledges his love. The first-born cares for the second-born, a girl as curious as her brother. Then the third arrives and the three kids guide and love each other.

Grandparents read to their grandson and blow bubbles for this newest child. The joys of childhood and a mother who races to her crying child. This all is part of this family of five, who love each other.


My loyal readers know what I will write in this space and it will not be that I hated this book. The story is composed of fragments of time, caught like photographs. A mother holds her first-born close, never wanting to let go, but she does. With dad, the toddler continues to grow and this happy family of three thrives. Then enters child number two, a girl. It is daddy’s turn to hold the baby close, his little girl. The images that accompany each frame of time softly plays the scene out for us.


Using watercolors and ink, the artist catches these tender moments, making them precious and tenderer, if that is even possible. Her images could tell this story without the text, which is what a good illustrated picture book should do—words for adults and kids, images for little ones, not yet a reader. I tended to pick up this book and turn its pages carefully, feeling the fragility of family, and the joys of one so close.

Children have real childhoods, playing with each other, guiding each other. Along the way, various hands help the children to grow: mom, dad, grandma and grandpa, and many more not shown.The sweetness is palatable. Two Hands to Love You may well have you thinking about your own little ones, whether they are still little or grown and on their own, maybe starting families. Alternatively, of your own childhood and what that meant to you.


I love the rhyming text. The words fit together perfectly, meaning I did not immediately recognize the rhyme, just the smooth flow of words that belonged together in that precise order. I think this story can help others remember what a family needs to be—a shelter in the storm and a place to learn and grow without ridicule and maybe a little rhyme.

I love the inherent gentleness the illustrations give us. I love the extended family all involved in raising a child. I guess I simply love Two Hands to Love You, which is an ideal baby shower gift. This is also an, “Oh, my, gosh, you’re pregnant” gift. New parents will cherish Two Hands to Love You. It would be the couple’s first, How to Raise Baby book.

For children Two Hands to Love You reinforces that parents will always be there for them, no matter the distance. That home is a shelter from the storm. A place to recharge before heading back into the world. Children want to know their parents will also be there for them. That message rings loudly through the tender pages of Two Hands to Love You.


TWO HANDS TO LOVE YOU. Text copyright © 2014 by Diane Adams. Illustrations copyright © 2014 by Paige Keiser. Reproduce by permission of the publisher, Chronicle Books, San Francisco, CA.

To learn more about Two Hands to Love You, click HERE.

Make Two Hands to Love You yours by going to AmazonB&NChronicle Books—or your local bookstore.


Meet the author, Diane Adams at her website:   http://www.dianeadams.net/

Meet the illustrator, Paige Keiser at her website:   http://www.paigekeiser.com/

Find other incredible books at the Chronicle Books website:   http://www.chroniclebooks.com/


Also by Paige Keiser

The Little Green Pea

The Little Green Pea

One Night In Bethlehem

One Night In Bethlehem




. I Love My Hat (October 2014)


NEW from Chronicle Books

I Didn't Do My Homework Because . . .

I Didn’t Do My Homework Because . . .

 Peek-a Zoo

Peek-a Zoo








2 hands to love you


Today is National Library Workers Day

Be extras nice to those who staff your library!

12 thoughts on “#543 – Two Hands to Love You by Diane Adams & Paige Keiser

  1. At first, when I saw the cover, I thought of Peter H. Reynolds as the illustrator, but quickly saw it wasn’t. I’m guessing Paige was heavily influenced by his style and it looks like she did a beautiful job!

    When it comes to “I love you” books, I’m pretty critical ’cause I find most of them overdone in certain ways, but this one sounds really precious. So glad to know about it!

    And, P.S. I LOVE YOU FOREVER is a book of which I will never understand its popularity. Sorry— I know there are a LOT of fans out there, but I’ve always found it kind of creepy to have an old mother climbing up a ladder to her grown son’s bedroom to cradle this man in her arms. TWO HANDS TO LOVE YOU looks much sweeter and much more healthy 🙂 I’m looking forward to seeing it on the shelves 😀 Great review, Sue!


    • I’m not sure what made you think of P.S. I Love You Forever which I have not read, but there is another book from the 1970’s called PS I Love You that is fantastic and all about children and the classroom and special needs kids. It has been years since I’ve read it so I’m a little fuzzy on the plot, but it is a fantastic book. It is one book I have refused to part with all these years.

      But on to today’s review, the story is sweet, it includes three generations of family, and it will remind you of life when we grew up, way back when. It is one of the best I love you books I have read (where were you when I was writing this? I neglected to say that.) Yes, I believe you would love this little book of love.


      • LOL…I had to go back to see why you thought I said it was “P.S.” I LOVE YOU FOREVER and it made me realize it looks that way ’cause I had to capitalize the title since I can’t italicize here. Anyway, I wasn’t the one who thought of it, but someone else mentioned it so I said more about it 🙂


        • You can italicize here, at least on this site. put a * before and after whatever you want to italicize and you will get this. There are more things you can do. Check out the “Markdowns & Smilies” link in the top navigation bar (header). The WP site just has to turn them on for those to work. And yes, I am turned on here. 🙂


  2. This book reminds me a bit of the book I’LL LOVE YOU FOREVER. Maybe the same tone? Sweet story and charming rhyme. Great review, Sue!


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