Trimmer, Christian. Teddy’s Favorite Toy. Illus. by Madeline Valentine. Atheneum, 2018. $17.99. unp. ISBN 978-1-4814-8079-6. Ages 4-7. P9Q9
Although the cover reveals that the boy’s favorite toy is a doll, beginning images show that he appreciates a diversity of entertainment—blocks, puzzles, firetrucks, etc. Yet Teddy is distraught when Bren-Da, Warrior Queen of Pacifica, loses one of her legs. After trying to mend her before he goes to school, Teddy returns home to discover that his mother had accidentally thrown way the toy. His accepting mother exhibits great athletic ability in her attempts to rescue Bren-Da from the garbage truck, who is reunited with a joyful Teddy. Gouache and pencil digitally composed illustrations on a white background display Teddy’s play with the doll from its “best manners” to the “sickest fighting skills” as well as the energy displayed by the mother in her fiercely comical romp to find Bren-Da.
Verdict: Trimmer’s mother and son interactions show the value of her acceptance of her son’s choice of an unconventional toy as his favorite and her resistance to gender stereotyping in a humorous way.
March 2018 review by Nel Ward.