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Friday, May 22, 2015

Prickly Jenny, by Sibylle Delacroix. Owlkids, 2015. $16.95 ages 2 and up

"Jenny is feeling
out of sorts, but
she doesn't want
to talk about it.

She just wants to
be loved."

If you have lived life with a toddler or two, you will know just exactly how 'prickly' they can be. While I have read other books about temper tantrums and toddler moodiness, few of them have captured quite so eloquently just exactly how Jenny is feeling today.

In fact, Jenny's behaviors throughout this day made me long for a chance to exhibit some of the exact same feelings ... I resist because I can. Jenny is not in a position to temper them quite so easily. She is, as toddlers are prone to do, struggling with independence and wanting reassurance. Her mood is awry from the first thing in the morning:

"Jenny doesn't say good morning
because, really, what's so good
about it?"

It only gets worse from there. The clothes picked for her are all wrong. She doesn't want to go to the fair with her dad. She in not at all interested in ice cream for dessert. Nap time is definitely not for her. Poor Jenny!

Only when she is left alone do we discover her conflicted feelings. She cries when her mom leaves, and seeks solace with her stuffed bunny. Please pay no attention to the hint of a smile, or she is sure to revert to grumpiness.

"Jenny doesn't know what
she wants today. But
tomorrow, when she's
bigger, it will get better."

It surely will!

Understanding the depth of the feelings that little ones have is captured perfectly in this wonderful book. The earthy colors are just right to convey Jenny's honest emotions - tender, sad, and funny when needed. The design makes for easy accessibility for a young audience. The text is on the left side, with accompanying images on the right. Its size is small, its message clear and its telling memorable. Bravo!                                                                             

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