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2 Stars Out Of 5
January 30, 2017
First, let me say that the illustrations are charming and deserve more review stars.
The story itself has ups and downs.
The basic premise of the story is that Willow lets herself be distracted by lots of choices/purchases on the way to the circus and doesn't have the money to go (a natural and logical consequence). She is then told that we have to say no to small things to be able to say yes to big good things. I think that would be a positive message.
HOWEVER, there are a few other things going on in this story that concern me.
Small logical things that concern me:
This kid is running all around town with money on her way to the circus. Where is an adult in this picture?
When Willow returns to the circus the next day, she passes up the ice cream, etc. but...didn't she spend all her money the day before, so is that really the high road it's portrayed to be?
Medium thing that concerns me: Willow is sad about not going to the circus so a strange man gives her a ticket to the circus. How do you spell c-r-e-e-p-y in real life?
Big things that concern me: After Willow can't go to the circus and has spent her funds, a man tells her about saying not to good things to be able to say yes to the great things BUT says everyone deserves a second chance (a very valid point but maybe not within this story that very minute). He then gives her a ticket for the circus the next day which turns out to be in the front row and she gets to ride circus animals (because the man is really the ringmaster). REALLY!?! Isn't that a bit of a mixed message?
If the purpose of the book, according to the author, is to get kids to make better choices and realize the natural consequences of instant gratification choices, I would say--not quite there.
Ever struggle with wanting something now? The desire to satisfy every longing in our hearts begins at an early age. We want it, we need it, we can't live without it -- words all too familiar and dangerous. They carry over into adulthood if one is not taught to have self-control.
In the children's story, Can't-Wait Willow!, by Christy Ziglar, we're introduced to an adorable little girl on her way to the circus. However, she's distracted along the way by many different things. These things vie for her time and money. In the end, she arrives late to the circus and short of funds to enter. She's quite upset with herself, but what can she do but cry? As she ponders her actions, a kindly man approaches and offers her a ticket to the final show, the next day. Willow is given a second chance.
Though the same temptations assault her on the second day, Willow has determined not to allow them to distract her from her purpose. She makes it to the circus just in time and is even given a special little reward too!
I think this hardcover book is an excellent read for children and adults! From the bright colorful illustrations, to the type of the text, and most importantly the story line, Can't-Wait Willow! is a book I'd recommend to anyone with children. Sometimes in life we think we need to have or do everything we see with our eyes. The things we choose may not be bad for us, but in the end they can distract us from our ultimate goal. Unfortunately, like Willow, we may not get a second chance. I believe that teaching self-control at a young age can enable children to learn that instant gratification is not always best. Sometimes it is better to wait!
I was given a copy of this book to review, free of charge, from FlyBy Promotions and the author. All views expressed in this review are my own.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received the product mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
This is a lesson on delayed gratification that needs to be established and established early!! I loved the book. It was a well written story that will appeal to kids and explains a concept in a way that they can understand. Willow knows what she wants, but lets other temptations take away her money and her time. As your child (or you and your child) read this, look for Ziggle each time Willow makes a decision. If it is a good choice, Ziggle the Star will be brightly shining. If it is not a wise decision, Ziggle will will be more lackluster and dejected. The illustrations are fabulous for letting even a nonreader know exactly what is going on. This book brings up great talking points between parent and child, and allows the child to think through the decisions Willow makes for a greater understanding of waiting for the best.
"Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
I'm so excited to see someone address a huge need--teaching children that choices have consequences. Willow is an adorable character in a beautifully illustrated book, but best of all, she learns an important lesson and gives the oppotunity for an adult to have a teachable moment with a child. I look forward to more in the Shine Bright Kid series!