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Summary: Duncan (a penguin) has a soft furry coat. Then one day, his fur started coming off ... he was worried. He loved his fur and the way it made him look different from the other penguins. To cover the bare spots, his mother made a sweater from the fur balls. But she was having a hard time making one that fit ... what was going to happen to Duncan? This story about growing up is told in Spanish and English
Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, anytime reading, learning to read, read aloud book
Recommended Age: read together: 3 to 7; read yourself: 8 to 10
Interest Level: 3 to 8
Reading Level: 2.2
Age of Child: Read by a 9-year-old girl.
Young Reader Reaction: My daughter understood what happened, but was sad that he never wore the last sweater his mom made for him.
Adult Reader Reaction: I have to agree with my daughter ... the image on the cover shows Duncan wearing a sweater he never puts on in the book. The bright illustrations help make Duncan's transition to adulthood stand out. I do love that Duncan celebrates his "difference" and that there are no bullies or teasers at all.
Pros: Duncan is an adorable penguin with a story that will delight kids.
Cons: Because the illustrations are computer-generated, neither the sweater or Duncan's fur have that soft fuzzy quality about them. Not a big deal, except for young readers who want that 'tactile' sense from their books.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. The story is cute but not one you'd come back to a lot.
Educational Themes: This is a story about how we change as we grow older. It would be a fun one to parallel with your child's baby pictures. Each page has full Spanish and English text and a vocabulary list at the end for practicing language development.
Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.