The Jellybeans and the Big Book Bonanza

Yesterday I had my first opportunity to be a member of the media for a book launch tour.  As a novice in this role, I didn't really know what to expect.  And while I don't think the word "pressure" should ever be used when you are in a room full of toddlers eating Cheerios out of Ziploc bags, there was an extra layer of emotion involved for me since the author was none other than New York Times Bestseller Laura Numeroff.  Thankfully, I had my little man in tow for moral support. As it turned out, the two of us had a blast! We got to listen to Laura read her story, talk to her afterwards, and meet some great folks from organizations like First Book (a wonderful charity that has been on my radar screen since I started writing this blog) and Washington Parent magazine.  OK, now onto the review...

*It might seem like overkill to demonstrate to kids in a book why reading is fun, yet we all know how important this lesson is
*Each of the four main characters (The Jellybeans) is unique and has a passion (art, athletics, dance, and reading) that your child likely shares
*Doesn't hurt to have the story revolve around doing your homework 

*While it's nice to see the other kids in class all support Anna's public speaking fears, it's not totally realistic and could set your child up for a surprise later on in life
*The other Jellybeans do end up seeing the beauty in reading, but their pouting at the library is not very becoming
*Anna's skunk classmate is either battling a cold, forced to sit at her own distant table due to issues with secretions, notoriously truant, or, most likely, forgotten in the illustration that depicts the day homework is assigned -- although there is a gopher who makes a late cameo as well, so maybe I'm reaching

Let me preface my review by saying that I committed myself to remaining impartial despite the circumstances.  Unlike the rest of Washington (I guess the cat's out of the bag on where your favorite blogger resides), I refuse to be influenced by special interests!  If this book was a dud, I would tell you so, as hard as that might have been given Laura's pedigree and her ability to relate to kids in person. So here goes.  If you have girls, this might be a Buy, but across all genders I can only give it a Borrow.  One final thought: outside of the three gripes listed above is the authors' (Nate Evans shared in the writing) choice of favorite jellybean: Cappuccino and Buttered Popcorn.  Yuck and yuck!

Buy / BORROW / Donate / Destroy

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