Chrysanthemum Big Book Book Summary

by Kevin Henkes16


Chrysanthemum Big Book by Kevin Henkes tells the story of a young mouse who learns to love her unique name despite being teased at school, delivering a heartwarming message about self-acceptance.

What is Chrysanthemum Big Book about

Chrysanthemum Big Book by Kevin Henkes centers on a young mouse named Chrysanthemum who initially loves her unique name. However, her self-esteem is shattered when she starts school and faces ridicule from her classmates Jo, Rita, and Victoria. The story, enriched with charming illustrations, beautifully conveys the message that our differences are what make us special. This makes it an excellent read-aloud book for classrooms and libraries, resonating with both children and adults.

Chrysanthemum Big Book 4 Key Takeaways

Chrysanthemum loves her name

Chrysanthemum is a young mouse who adores her name because it is unique and perfect, just like she believes herself to be.

Teased at school

When Chrysanthemum starts school, her classmates tease her for having a name that is long and floral, leading her to feel ashamed and self-conscious.

Teacher's support

With the support of her music teacher, who also has a flower name, Chrysanthemum learns to appreciate her unique name once again.


Chrysanthemum realizes that her name is special, just like she is, and feels proud of her identity.

Chrysanthemum Big Book Best Reviews

  • 'Chrysanthemum is a memorable and touching book that teaches children the importance of self-acceptance and the value of individuality.' - School Library Journal

Top Chrysanthemum Big Book Quotes

  • 'Chrysanthemum, Chrysanthemum, Chrysanthemum.'
  • 'She was a perfect baby, and she had a perfect name.'

Who should read Chrysanthemum Big Book?

Chrysanthemum Big Book is ideal for young children, particularly those in preschool through third grade. Parents, teachers, and librarians will find it a valuable resource for teaching themes of self-acceptance, individuality, and resilience.

About the Author

Kevin Henkes is a celebrated author and illustrator of children's books. He has received numerous awards for his work, including the Caldecott Medal and the Newbery Honor. Some of his other well-known books include 'Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse,' 'Kitten's First Full Moon,' and 'Owen.' Henkes is renowned for his ability to address complex emotional and social themes in a manner that is accessible and engaging for young readers.

Chrysanthemum Big Book FAQs

What is the story Chrysanthemum about?

Chrysanthemum is about a young mouse who loves her unique name, but faces ridicule from classmates at school. The story follows her journey to self-acceptance with the help of a supportive teacher.

What is the message in the book Chrysanthemum?

The book conveys that what makes us different also makes us special, emphasizing the importance of self-acceptance and loving ourselves just the way we are.

What grade level is Chrysanthemum for?

Chrysanthemum is suitable for children in preschool through third grade.