What Love Looks Like

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Dedication TK Dedication TK What Love Looks Like • Text copyright © 2023 by Laura Obuobi • Illustrations copyright © 2023 by Anna Cuhna • All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. Manufactured in Italy/Spain/other. • No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews. For information address HarperCollins Children’s Books, a division of HarperCollins Publishers, 195 Broadway, New York, NY 10007. • www.harpercollinschildrens.com • Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data • ISBN 978-0-06-322243-4 • The artist used ______________________________ to create the [digital] illustrations for this book. • Typography by Chelsea C. Donaldson • 22 23 24 25 26 XXXXXX 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 • First Edition

Laura Obuobi

Anna Cuhna

One summer evening, Afia kissed her papa goodnight and settled down for bed. She snuggled with her stuffies,

curled up under covers, and closed her eyes.

But she couldn’t fall asleep. The truth is, she didn’t want to. Not yet.

Not when the June evening sky made the world seem wide awake and nudged Afia with ideas to keep sleep far away.

“Papa?” she called. “What does love look like?”

Papa sat on her bed with a great big smile. “Why don’t we find out?” he said. “Take my hand.” A beam of light swooshed in and swooped them into . . .

a desert, where the sun reached over sand dunes with warm hugs and tickles for Afia and Papa, with a skin-tingling touch of love. Then a gentle wind twirled Afia and her papa up to . . .

a mountaintop, where ice crystals crowned her curls, adorned her lashes, and trailed her shoulders like a glittering mantle.

Afia and Papa strutted through snow, like a queen and her guard, making funny footprints and melting fluffy flakes on their tongues. And it filled Afia with a delightfully cool taste of love. They cozied up on a cottony cloud and drifted down to . . .

the seashore, where waves rushed and rolled to greet them, offering shells, pearls, and sea glass with swirls.

Sea breeze chased Afia and her papa, and they squawked and laughed till tears ran down their happy faces. Till their hearts felt like bursting with love.

But then Papa said, “Afia, it’s getting late. We should get back to bed.”

The summer evening sky had changed, and even though Afia was tired, she asked, “Can we see just one more thing, Papa?” Papa gave a great big chuckle and said, “Yes, my dear, we can.” So Afia and Papa followed a path from the beach into . . .

a forest. There, haloed beneath a golden sky, Afia nestled in her papa’s arms.

Blossoms dressed in velvety hues, infused with flowery smells of love, waved, and a babbling brook serenaded them with sounds of love,

As they listened, gilded lights streamed down from the sky, dimmed as they fell on leaves and branches, and disappeared when they reached the forest floor. Soon there was no more daylight. Everything was covered in black. Only one speck of light remained. It flickered . . .

illuminating the onyx sky in shimmering shapes and starry splendor.

Afia gazed at the twinkling display above their heads and said, “Love looks like a warm hug from the sun, cool, crunchy snow on my tongue, gifts from the sea, the scent of flowers, and a brook’s song.”

“But best of all,” Papa said, 30-31

“love looks like you and me.”

A shooting star swooshed down and swooped them home. As Papa tucked Afia into bed, he said, “I love you, my dear.” “I love you too, Papa,” Afia said, and slid into blissful sleep.

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