Sunday, February 22, 2015

An Upbeat Take on Remarriage

Mom, Dad, & Everyone Else

Written and Illustrated by David Dickerman
Crafty Canuck Publishing
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 2014

Reviewed by Laura Harting

Image copyright 2013 Crafty Canuck and David Dickerman
“In the beginning, there was just Mom, Dad and Me.”  So begins this upbeat new book about divorce and remarriage.  Written from the perspective of a young child, this book addresses the changes that may occur after a divorce, when Mom and Dad meet new partners and remarry.  This young child remembers what it was like when the family included just the three of them and then goes on to share about how the family grew to include step-parents, step-siblings, aunts, uncles, new neighbors, half siblings and many more.  With each new family addition, this child has interesting new and enjoyable experiences. However, important family traditions (like birthday parties) remain intact while including more people and more fun.

This is a good book for a young child, (pre-school and early elementary) whose parents have begun to introduce new partners into their children’s lives.  It focuses on the benefits of new family and friends and the positive way new people can influence a child’s life.  It is illustrated in a unique manner by using modeling clay.  It is not entirely clear whether the child at the heart of the story is a boy or a girl. Though I like the colorful pictures of the clay models, I found myself wondering, as I looked at the pictures, “Why does everyone just have a head, and where are their bodies?”  I would be interested to know if the children who read this book wonder the same thing. 

Laura Harting, LCSW, sees young clients at her office in Paoli, Pennsylvania.

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