3 out of 4 stars
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The Mushroom’s Other Hat by Nancy-Jo Taiani is a children’s picture book about a mushroom named Amber. The rain has brought her and some other mushrooms out into the open for the first time. As Amber looks around the colony of mushrooms, she sees different shapes, colors, and sizes. After being called an “ordinary looking mushroom”, her feelings are hurt and she becomes self-conscious of her appearance. She sets out to find a new hat that will make her unique. Will she be able to find a hat that makes her beautiful?
This children’s book contains an amazing message about being yourself. I can’t say much more about that message without ruining the end of the book, but I loved it. I would definitely encourage children to read this book solely based on what they would learn from it. In my opinion, the message is such an important part of children’s books, and this reviewer did a great job conveying hers!
I also really liked the illustrations for this book. They were gorgeous pictures with vivid details. I looked through the book a couple times just so that I could really take them all in. I think children will love to follow along in the book and look at all of the characters on each page. Another aspect that I enjoyed was the educational section about mushrooms at the end of the book. This is a great way for children to learn about mushrooms since they just finished a story about a whole colony of them.
There were only two complaints I had with the book. One was that there were just a few too many errors for a children’s book. Within the actual pages of the story, there were a total of five errors. There were also four errors within the author’s note and the section about mushrooms. While this isn’t a huge deal, I felt like it was still too many for such a short book.
My other complaint is that the beginning would probably be kind of confusing for children. I have to admit that I was confused the first time I read it. I didn’t understand why Amber was coming out from under a leaf and seeing her home for the first time. I understood it after I read the information on mushrooms and then read the beginning a second time. There could have been a little more explanation in the first few pages instead of in the section at the end to make this clearer for the reader.
I give this book 3 out of 4 stars. If I could, I would give it 3.5. I didn’t really want to take a whole star away, but I just couldn’t give it a perfect score because of the errors and the confusing beginning. I would love to read a revised version because this book definitely has the potential to earn a perfect rating. Even as written, I would recommend this book to all children. I think the message is one that all kids, and even adults, could benefit from.
The Mushroom's Other Hat
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