Book reviews: Ben Says Goodbye, by Sarah Ellis, illustrated by Kim LaFave

Ellis, Sarah. Ben Says Goodbye. Illustrated by Kim LaFave. Pajama Press, 2016. $18.95. ISBN 9781927485798. Unpaged. Ages 3-6. P6 Q6

The inside cover has cave drawings depicting adventures. Ben’s friend Peter is moving. To deal with his feelings of loss, Ben hides under the table and draws cave drawings of adventures he imagines himself and Peter having. At the end of the book, someone moves in next door. The author shows a scooter being unloaded from the moving truck along with the words, “Just the right size for a new friend.” This allows the reader to use his/her imagination as to who has moved in next door. The story was a bit choppy and disjointed. While it explored the feelings one has when one’s friend moves, it also shows that new friends appear.

Verdict: I recommend this book for parents who want to help their children deal with their friend moving away. It shows the child taking some time to deal with his feelings and then the parents spending time with him. It ends with hope that a new friend will appear. Teachers may want this book in their library to help students realize that new friends can appear at any time.

June 2017 review by Tami Harris.

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