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Author: Melinda Chambers

Illustrator: Sue Ann Maxwell Spiker

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Publisher: Headline Kids,

Material: hard cover

Summary: All of Mama Cat's kittens were anxious to jump down from the shelf and explore the barn. All but one, that is. He saw only danger in jumping, and what his siblings described as "fun" didn't look fun to him. He was having fun watching a mud dauber build a nest right above the shelf. But as the kittens grew, the shelf was more crowded ... especially with the growing wasp next. Would Fraidy ever leave that shelf? Self discovery is the central theme in this picture book for young readers.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, playtime reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 4 to 8; read yourself: 8 to 10

Interest Level: 4 to 9

Reading Level: 3.3

Age of Child: Read by a 9-year-old girl.

Young Reader Reaction: The cover image of Fraidy looking over the fence grabbed our daughter's interest, but it was Fraidy's story that kept her reading. She could instantly relate to being afraid to do things and others telling her how much fun they were having.

Adult Reader Reaction: I love this book. It is a great story that teaches kids that they need to decide when their ready, and also reminds parents that maybe we need to back off sometimes and let kids figure things out on their own. Weaving together the stories of the kitten and the industrious mud dauber was very effective.

Pros: Kids will instantly connect with Fraidy and recognize fears they've overcome. The theme that just by looking around you can enjoy things is a nice parallel.

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Buy. This is one of those books that has a lot to offer audiences at different ages and will also be a great "comfort book" when kids are feeling afraid of something new.


Educational Themes: From self-discovery and confidence to trying new things and learning about the world, there are lots of ways to use this book.

Notes: The Reading Tub® picked up this book at Book Expo America. There are no expectations of review associated with this book.

Literary Categories: Fiction - animal characters, life lessons, emotions

Date(s) Reviewed: September 2011

Other Reviews: No Critics Reviews or reader feedback found at the time of this review.


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