Welcome to another Write a Review Wednesday, a meme started by Tara Lazar as a way to show support to authors of kids literature. Last week I wrote a review on a delightful story A Wizard in Love (by Mireille Levert and Marie Lafrance). This week I’m thinking of my son when I review another wonderful picture book courtesy of my friend Sylvia at Tundra Books (@TundraBooks).
My son is different. And by different I mean he has long hair, long for a boy his age. He likes his hair long, we all do. I can’t imagine him any other way. But sometimes being different can be difficult for others to handle. He is sometimes bothered by the comments other people make and one time he even thought about cutting his hair to fit in (thank goodness that passed).
Then I discovered Wanda’s Freckles, by Barbara Azore and Georgia Graham (age 3-7 ). Our family is familiar with Wanda. We own Wanda and the Wild Hair (another fitting story for my son). Like my son, Wanda, in Wanda’s Freckles, has something unique about her, something that only she has, something that makes her feel special. Her freckles. Other kids have freckles but none have as many as she does. Wanda’s younger cousin refers to them as sparkles. Wanda loves her freckles. That is until some boys in the playground tease her.
Wanda’s beautiful, unique freckles have now been relegated to plain old spots. And who wants spots? What was once something of pride to her is now embarrassing. After little consolation from her mother, Wanda decides to take matters into her own hands and rid herself of her freckles.
Parents try to raise their kids feeling positive about who they are. But sometimes there are outside influences that we have no control over, like on the playground or in the school yard or on the soccer field. This story illustrates wonderfully that it’s okay to be unique and an individual. All children have something about them that makes them special and reading this book with them might help them discover and celebrate that. My two older kids enjoyed talking about Wanda’s freckles and what makes them unique or different from their own friends.
Georgia Graham‘s illustrations add a warmth to Wanda that makes her lovable. Reading the book you can feel Wanda’s sadness and frustration and satisfaction through her illustrated facial expressions.
Wanda is a wonderful character that kids will enjoy befriending. You can add a copy of Wanda’s Freckles to your own home library by pre-ordering it through Amazon.ca (release date is August 11, 2009). Check out my other Write a Review Wednesday posts for more great story suggestions.
What are you reading with your family this week?