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Summary: Alex has a problem that is bigger than she is: she is fighting a particurlarly nasty sickness. She wants to help other kids who have this illness, too, so she comes up with a plan to make a difference. Alex decides to sell lemonate from a lemonade stand. This book uses rhyme to retell the real-life story of a little girl.
Type of Reading: family reading, anytime reading, read aloud book, middle grade reader
Recommended Age: 4 to 10
Age of Child: Started reading to 4-year-old child.
Young Reader Reaction: Although s/he requested the book several times, our preschooler never sat still through the whole story. Instead, s/he would walk away about halfway through.
Adult Reader Reaction: The story is not what you expect…until you finish the second page. The rhyming scheme and bright illustrations keep the theme light, but it would be nice to have a "warning" for parents so they know what's coming. Some "discussion" ideas would also be helpful, as not all parents will feel comfortable talking about cancer or death.
Pros: The story is inspirational, offering children insight to illness, compassion, and making a difference with a simple tale they can understand.
Cons: Minor: you need to know up front that this is about a little girl who died of cancer. You may want to prescreen this book to prepare for questions.
Borrow or Buy: This could go either way. Families dealing with serious childhood illness, or those who want to introduce death to young children should consider this for their libraries. The purchase of the book goes to a great cause.
Educational Themes: The book offers families the opportunity to introduce some facts of life (e.g., death, terminal illness) as well as compassion and making a difference.
Notes: A portion of the book's sales go to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer
Literary Categories: Nonfiction - inspirational, health and medicine, picture book
Date(s) Reviewed: October 2005
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