Wednesday, October 16, 2019

J.P. and the Bossy Dinosaur (Review #2), written by Ana Crespo, reviewed by Klaudia Janek

Student Reviewer: Ryan S.
Summary: JP is a young boy who is exploring his emotions. Throughout the book, JP struggles to find happiness while at a waterpark with his family. JP is very excited to be at the waterpark, and he is most excited to ride the giant waterslide. When JP attempts to ride the giant water slide, he discovered that he was not tall enough to meet the slide’s safety requirements. JP tried to enter the ride, but the water slide was being guarded by a big, bossy dinosaur! The bossy dinosaur refused to let JP go down the waterslide. This made JP very upset, and he started to throw a tantrum. The book explores JP’s emotional journey from the start of his family’s trip to the waterpark through his brief temper tantrum.

Straight Talk for Librarians: Adults will know that the bossy dinosaur is only a symbol for the restrictions that children believe adults place on them. The bossy dinosaur symbolizes how children sometimes feel when adults do not let them participate in activities that they want to participate in. As adults, we know these restrictions are set in place to protect children, to keep them safe, but children are not always capable of seeing this fact. This book, through its use of symbolism, portrays a relatable message on how children's development, mentally and emotionally, is connected. For an emerging reader, this book offers this message in an approachable manner, and in a way that can be related to by any reader who has gotten upset over rules of society, or being told no. This book can also help to teach emergent readers how to deal with their emotions, and how to control them when they are in a situation that is less than ideal. The book also provides readers with the clarity that there is light at the end of the tunnel, however small or large the tunnel may be. JP became very upset when he found out he could not ride the water slide, but if you want to find out how he grew from, and handled the situation, grab this book from your local library shelf. This book could be used in libraries and classrooms as a coming of age, or developmental, text. This book serves a good, approachable message to children about how to handle their emotions.

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