Kirkus Reviews QR Code
GROWING STRONG by Christina Goodings


A Book About Taking Care of Yourself

by Christina Goodings, illustrated by Masumi Furukawa

Age Range: 5 - 9

Pub Date: Aug. 15th, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-7459-6158-3
Publisher: Lion/Trafalgar

This second outing by the team of Goodings and Furukawa turns the spotlight from care of the planet (Growing Green, 2008) to care of the self, with each spread focusing on a different aspect: eating right, keeping clean, mouth care, staying active and fit, using protective gear that suits the activity and weather, being careful, first aid and sleep. Unfortunately, many of the problems of their first title reoccur here. A solid target audience is hard to identify, since philosophical musings/questions and vocabulary such as “suitable” and “vital” follow sentences such as, “Nasties that can make you ill lurk on all kinds of things….” In addition, British spellings may throw new readers off--e.g., practise, skilful, cosy. The pastel-colored illustrations are appealing, but the captions are distracting and from a teacher’s viewpoint problematic because even when they are complete sentences they lack a capital letter and period. Also, the cast of characters, while adorably rosy-cheeked, is overwhelmingly Caucasian with only three exceptions. Important information and good advice disappointingly presented. (Informational picture book. 5-9)