It Was Supposed to Be Sunny by Samantha Cotterill

It Was Supposed to Be Sunny by Samantha Cotterill (9780525553472)

Leila’s birthday was planned to be an outdoor celebration until the storm hit and it had to be moved inside. Leila doesn’t deal well with changes, but with the support of her mother and her service dog, she manages to rethink the day more than once! They will still have the Wish Jar rather than singing Happy Birthday, a sparkly craft to replace balloons, and extra icing on the cake. The unicorn races moved to an indoor course and were still lots of fun. Until…a crash happened and the cake ended up on the floor. Now the schedule is ruined and Leila takes a break with her dog. After the break, it is Leila who comes up with the solution to continue the birthday party even without cake to share.

Another in the Little Senses series, this book is particularly designed to reflect the experience of children on the autism spectrum as well as those with sensory processing issues. Cotterill’s text is simple and pace of the story is fast. This helps with understanding Leila’s reactions as she is hit multiple times with big changes to her plans. She also demonstrates how to use techniques and support to face change, to remind herself that it turned out alright in previous experiences, and to find a new and positive way forward.

The art is friendly and bright, showing characters of various races and featuring a Black child and mother at its center. Leila’s emotions can be read easily in the images, showing her excitement, worry, sadness and happiness in turns.

Another winner in a series that speaks to so many children. Appropriate for ages 3-5.

Reviewed from copy provided by Dial Books for Young Readers.

Things That Go Away by Beatrice Alemagna

Things That Go Away by Beatrice Alemagna

Things That Go Away by Beatrice Alemagna (9781419744822)

Turn the pages of this picture book and watch as things steadily go away, one after the next. Bubbles float off, bird fly past, small wounds vanish with time. Steam dissipates, leaves fall and bad weather moves on. Emotions are the same with fear going away, tears drying and bad thoughts not staying. The book has a wry sense of humor as even lice moves on out of your hair, baby teeth falling out, and hair moving from one person to another. Everything is changing in the picture book, all going away but for most of it we don’t miss it afterwards.

Award-winning Italian author, Alemagna, has created a picture book with simple text but a deep premise. The sense of change is huge in this picture book and a feeling that things are not within our control either. The book is very cleverly designed, with see-through pages that show the changes happening. The items on the clear page are simple, moving from one page to the next very effectively. The background images have a modern wildness to them that is very welcome.

A dynamic picture book about things going away and constant change that children will adore as they turn the pages back and forth. Appropriate for ages 4-6.

Reviewed from copy provided by Abrams Books for Young Readers.