Hardcover ~ Ages 4-7
My thoughts: This is a charming book illustrated in simple drawings that a child can grasp and identify with because they look similar to the drawings a child might make. The colors are primary and softened. Elmer has shaggy fur and dots for his eyes. The trees spiky. Flowers simple. Clouds just like Johnny or Susie might draw. So the initial connection a child can make of identifying with Elwood is with the illustrations.
|Reprinted with permission from Elwood Bigfoot © 2015 by Jill Esbaum, Sterling Children’s Books, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. Illustrations by Nate Wragg.|
The story is great for a picture book that is wonderful either read to young children or read by young readers themselves. The cadence, while not rhyming, flows beautifully and expresses the heartfelt emotion of lovable Elwood's despair over trying to gain friends and his disappointment in failure.
This book will open the window of insightful discussions on how we can have difficulty making friends because of our behavior that might scare them off. Perhaps they are not really scared, but are just not accustomed to something about us. We're different. We try to make friends. We fail. We try again. We learn what it is that causes us not to make friends. We adjust. We learn to get along and be accepted.
Elwood Bigfoot Wanted Birdie Friends! He truly wanted birdie friends, and he worked hard at getting those friends. In the end he and the birdies are happy.
A sweet book that is not too pretty for boys and not too boyish for girls. Just right to get a good lesson across without heavy handed teaching. Get ready to fall in love with this sweet Bigfoot critter.
Let's hear a bit from Jill Esbaum, author
What is the motive behind the story line of Elwood Bigfoot and Birdie Friends?
I decided to watch Finding Bigfoot one evening to see for myself just how cheesy it was. One thing struck me: they were always talking about “a” bigfoot. I couldn’t help thinking that the poor things must be lonely. From there, it was only a matter of days before Elwood popped into my head. That isn’t to say his story popped into my head so easily. Elwood Bigfoot: Wanted: Birdie Friends was my third try at finding the story that worked for him.
Do you enjoy being outside?
Yes. I’m a small-town girl who grew up in a camping/fishing family. Childhood summers were spent in Minnesota/Wisconsin/Iowa campgrounds or traveling across the country, overnighting in National Parks and National Forests along the way. Now, I live on a farm in the wide-open, rolling hills of eastern Iowa and have a dog who is always up for a trek across the fields.
Are the "birdies" special to you as they are to Elwood?
Yes, I’ve always kept an eye on the sky to see who’s hanging around the yard. My grandparents gave me a bright lime parakeet for my 10th birthday. Maybe that’s what started it. Birds are so small and vulnerable, which makes them excellent stand-ins for kiddos, of course.
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DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary product to facilitate this review by Sterling Publishing. Opinions expressed are my own. Product information was provided by Sterling Publishing. Giveaway copy is provided by Sterling shipped by them to the winner. I was not compensated for this review.