Unlike Molly Bang’s Sophie, when Claire gets angry, there are some significant consequences.
The day starts out like any other, with Claire and her stuffed white rabbit, Fluffy, looking forward to many things. But when a “tiny button” pops off Fluffy’s outfit (which matches Claire’s), then the box of Super Choco Puffs cereal is found to be empty, then all the neighborhood kids want to swing at the same time as Claire…readers can see Claire’s gaze turn a little more manic, her teeth and hands clench a little tighter with each new frustration. The last straw, though, is when it starts to pour just as it’s finally Claire and Fluffy’s turn on the swing. Her anger rages so wildly that Fluffy grows to be 50 feet tall and goes on a rampage against all that has frustrated Claire: the tiny-button factory, the cereal delivery trucks, the beloved park swingset. But just as soon as this last is smooshed to bits, Claire regains control and is remorseful. Her friends at the park are understanding and tell her “We’ve all been there before.” Claire, Fluffy in tow, puts all back to rights. Boldt’s digital illustrations keep the focus on Claire’s emotions, her expressiveness leaving no doubt in readers’ minds as to how she is feeling. The fact that Fluffy’s face never changes in the slightest adds welcome humor. Claire has straight, black hair, brown eyes, and pale skin; other kids at the park are diverse.
Pair with a book that will teach children alternatives to unleashing their own inner Fluffys. (Picture book. 4-8)