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“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island.”
Summary: Lady (a squirrel) tells us her family's story. After a big storm blew her nest out of the tree, she got separated from her family. Thanks to animal rescue, she had a place to live, but what about her family? Lady teaches us that you can find happiness in a new place. This picture book is a fictionalized account of a squirrel who survived Hurricane Charley.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, anytime reading, playtime reading, read aloud book, learning to read
Recommended Age: read together: 4 to 8; read yourself: 6 to 9
Interest Level: 4 to 8
Age of Child: Read with child nearly 6 years old.
Young Reader Reaction: Despite our child's love of animals (including squirrels), we couldn't get much interest or reaction about this book.
Adult Reader Reaction: We read this with our child a couple of times over a week, but then s/he didn't want to read it any more. This is a sweet story, but it just didn't grab us. We like the idea that the book introduces several themes, including fear, loss, and adoption, in a way that young children can understand.
Pros: The bright illustrations complement this story, that has a positive message. The vocabulary is perfect for a first-grade reader.
Cons: There is no information about Hurricane Charley in the book.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a nice book. Odds are children will start naming the squirrels in your neighborhood "Lady."
Educational Themes: In addition to using the book to practice reading, the story offers several themes: personal loss, whether it's a home or family member; adoption; fear; weather, particularly hurricanes; and animal rescue, including safe handling of wildlife.