4 out of 4 stars
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The Magnificent Adventures of Folotjing and Friends by Rio N. Cortez is an enchanting picture book that sensitively teaches children about loss and compassion. Folotjing is a Dwendi, "an elfin creature in Filipino folklore." The tiny being is friendly, mischievous, and possesses magical powers. As the story unfolds, Folotjing doesn't allow his small size to prevent him from helping various forest friends, including Re'ynabon and her eaglet, Pag'la'oom.
The 37-page children's book is written and illustrated by Cortez. It is his second book featuring Folotjing and his adventures. The author recommends the story for children ranging from ages seven through twelve, but he emphasizes parental discretion and suggests reading it together to introduce the subject of loss. The book also traverses themes of kindness, compassion, helpfulness, resilience, bravery, and love.
Folotjing may be small in stature, but he exemplifies strength by helping others and making a difference; this subtly powerful message is my favorite aspect of the book. Likewise, it requires an excellent storyteller to navigate a challenging topic like loss and still present a children's book that is fun to read. Cortez nails it by cleverly utilizing fun rhymes and whimsical illustrations; he clearly knows his audience.
It is always a pleasure to review a book with flawless editing. Cortez delivers an error-free book and masterfully combines engaging characters, sensitive themes, and a professional presentation to create a delightful story that teaches and entertains young readers. What's not to like? Additionally, I am unable to highlight any suggestions for improvement.
I am pleased to rate this magical children's book 4 out of 4 stars. It would make a thoughtful gift for a child who has experienced loss. In addition to the targeted audience, I recommend the picture book to parents, caregivers, grandparents, and teachers. However, I reiterate that the author strongly suggests exercising parental discretion with younger children.
The Magnificent Adventures of Folotjing and Friends
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