July 2010 Indie Next List
“Zero is universally appealing, perfect for teachers, parents, grandparents, and, of course, kids! It's the sweet story of the number Zero who feels empty inside. She looks at all the other numbers and wishes she could be like them. But then, with the help of number Seven, she realizes she's not empty, she's open! She has value and is perfect just the way she is. Punctuating the story are Otoshi's gorgeous illustrations.”
— Lauren Peugh, Mrs. Nelson's Toy & Book Shop, La Verne, CA
Zero is a big round number. When she looks at herself, she just sees a hole right in her center. Every day she watches the other numbers line up to count: "1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 . . . !" "Those numbers have value. That's why they count," she thinks. But how could a number worth nothing become something? Zero feels empty inside. She watches One having fun with the other numbers. One has bold strokes and squared corners. Zero is big and round with no corners at all. "If I were like One, then I can count too," she thinks. So she pushes and pulls, stretches and straightens, forces and flattens herself, but in the end she realizes that she can only be Zero. As budding young readers learn about numbers and counting, they are also introduced to accepting different body types, developing social skills and character, and learning what it means to find value in yourself and in others.
About the Author
Kathryn Otoshi is a cat lover and an award-winning author and illustrator who has always wanted to do a children's picture book based on her own Japanese heritage. She lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her husband, Daniel, and two cockatiels.