Ballerina Bess, originally published in 1965, is a completely charming and engaging story of a little girl who wants nothing more than to be a ballerina. In 25 words total the author takes Bess from her wish to be a ballerina to her dance practice and finally to the stage in tutu and ballet shoes. The text has the lyrical quality of the best children’s books: it is effortlessly remembered and recited by the child to whom it is read. The clean illustrations, drawn almost exclusively in dark pink, black and white, manage to convey Bess’ enthusiasm, energy, and love of dance. This book was my absolute favorite as a little girl.