Book Review: School Isn’t Fair

School Isn’t Fair by Patricia Baehr and illustrated by R.W. Alley is about four-year-old Edward describing all the ways he’s a victim of unfairness during his school day. I have a fondness for this book because…

– Edward’s ‘voice’ is so authentic. He sounds like a typical four-year-old. My 3 and 5 year-olds call each other silly names and whine about something not being fair – just like Edward.

– The conflicts are real. Edward is bullied. He doesn’t get his way in class. He can’t run as fast as his classmates. He can’t see the pictures during story time. And he acts out because he doesn’t know how to express his anger.

– The illustrations are nice. It always helps to have decent illustrations to convey a story.

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Book Review: Go Away Dog!

I love this book by Joan Nodset and illustrated by Paul Meisel because it mirrors an experience with my boys.  We don’t own pets so my boys are the oddball children who weren’t born with an affinity towards dogs (this is what a dog-owner once implied). go away dog

Anyway, this little boy is approached by a playful pup and he consistently shuns the dog’s affections. The dog jumps and rolls and wags and the eventually makes his way into the boys’ heart. My sons were intimidated – no FRIGHTFUL – of dogs at first.  After a few friendly encounters, they’ve learned to love them. Now my youngest says it isn’t fair that he doesn’t have one!

This is a super easy to read book with delightful pictures and a wonderful story. However, I’m wondering if it encourages kids to befriend strange dogs! You know, you have to be cautious! 🙂

The Boy Who Wouldn’t Share: Book Review

The title is accurate, this little boy did NOT want to share. And he’s got oodles of toys – enough to spare. Matter of fact, near the end of the story, I was wondering if he’d come around. And then, a child after my own heart, he caved in for the luxury of chocolate. 🙂 

This tale, written by Mike Reiss and illustrated by David Catrow, is well put together. The illustrations are intense (look at the cover), yet engaging. The story is uncomplicated, yet honest and reads in a lovely rhythmic tempo. 

My boys love this book! They instantly responded to the emotions and stubbornness of the little boy (as if they’ve never been such way 🙂 ). And yet, the little sister in the story is so meek, there’s no collision between the two (which is also not so realistic in our world).

I think the boy’s resistance to sharing resonated with my boys and left a positive impression about the value of sharing. We’d definitely recommend it.

Are You Going to Be Good? Book Review

Of course, I HAD to pick this book up when I saw the title!  I mean really, how many times have I asked my own boys this question before going out??

Author Cari Best tells a story of a young boy who is going to his great-grandmother’s 100th birthday party… and it’s got all of the ingredients of fun.
 –          Going out at night
 –          Attending a birthday party
 –          Eating CAKE
 –          Playing and dancing

 Of course, he gets into trouble and is  reprimanded by grown-ups. I mean really, what else is a 5-year-old to do at a grown-up party that had chicken with mushrooms and onions for dinner and no toys? In the end, the one who appreciates his childlike curiosity and frivolousness is the guest of honor – his great-grandmother! They cut the rug (dance), eat candy and have a ball! Thinking of my own grandfather who lived to be 100 years and 2 months old, the last lines of the book got me misty-eyed.

“I can’t wait till next year,’ says Robert.
“Neither can I,” says Great Gran Sadie.

Brian Caras’ illustrations from a child’s point of view were so on point! Overall,  the book didn’t arouse a huge reaction from my boys, but I know they could relate and I think they enjoyed it.

Book Review: Jacob O’Reilly Wants a Pet

This is another goodie from the library written by Lynne Rickards. I love the little boy in this story – you know why?  
* He’s got tenacity. He presented his case to his parents about what he wanted (I used to do that).
* He’s an entrepreneur! Upon his parent’s suggestion he started a pet-sitting business.
* He’s a realist! It takes a lot to care for a pet. He ended up choosing a low cost, low maintenance pet any parent would love for their child to be happy with.

And the book has a pleasant rhyme with active pictures and a wild imagination to make it an all around fun read. Is your child begging for a pet?

** October is National Down Syndrome Awareness Month. Death rates among Black or African-American infants with Down syndrome seem to be higher than death rates among White infants with Down syndrome. **

Book Review: It’s Hard to Be Five!

Book Review

My oldest turned five last month so he could appreciate this tale. The main character is just like him!  He’s a young boy who turned five, he’s got a younger brother, and he can’t sit STILL! 

This is part of Jamie Lee Curtis’s collection that I checked out of the library.  And this boy struggles internally the same as some adults! He says, “My mind says do one thing – my mouth says another.”

But the issues are those of a typical five-year-old. It was so funny watching the light bulb of familiarity go off in my son’s head as he realized other kids feel the same as he does… like being aggravated with his baby brother. The boy in the book is even outgrowing his clothes! In the end, he finds the joys in being five. I’d recommend it and I’m sure my son would too.

** I’m blogging #31for21 – National Down Syndrome Awareness Month. More than 400,000 people in the United States have Down syndrome.