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HOW TO BE A FRIEND by Laurie Krasny Brown


A Guide to Making Friends and Keeping Them

by Laurie Krasny Brown & illustrated by Marc Brown

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-316-10913-4
Publisher: Little, Brown

With simplicity and humor, barring all condescension, the Browns (When Dinosaurs Die, 1996, etc.) deliver the promise of the subtitle. Calling into duty the now-familiar green anthropomorphic dinosaurs of the other entries in the Dino Life Guides for Families, the Browns make the idea of friendship clear with scenes children will recognize: friends in front of the computer and the television, friends playing chess and basketball. The author explains that anyone can be a friend (and the pictures indicate that age, gender, and disabilities are no hindrance to friendship); that there are a lot of ways to be a friend, and that includes not only sharing but listening, not only helping but trusting. A clear description of how to handle an argument is nicely done; the advice about bosses and bullies is perhaps meager (asking a grown-up for help). The endpapers include quotes from members of a third- grade class on how to be a friend (“Call them by the names they want to be called”) and how not to be one (“If you can do something and your friend can’t, make a big deal about it”). (Picture book. 5-9)