Sunday, February 22, 2015

When Otis Courted Mama by Kathi Appelt -- ADVISABLE

Appelt, Kathi When Otis Courted Mama, illustrated by Jill McElmurry. PICTURE BOOK. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015. $16.99. Content: G.

Cardell the coyote has a perfectly good mama and a perfectly good daddy -- even though they live in different parts of the desert, and he has to travel between them. But when a new neighbor shows interest in Cardell's mom, Cardell knows his world is about to change. He doesn't want to share his mama, but even he has to admit that Otis isn't so bad.

This is a heart-warming story for children whose parents don't live together, and who are dealing with jealousy and other conflicted feelings that may come when someone shows romantic interest in a parent. Otis is a great role model, patient and kind without being overbearing. Cardell's mother is careful to honor Cardell's feelings while still respecting her own wishes -- a difficult balance to achieve. Best of all, the ending left me with a smile on my face.

Pre-K, EL (K-3) -- ADVISABLE. Reviewer: Caryn

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