What’s Up for Kids was given the opportunity to review two books by Kathy Brodsky and illustrated by Cameron Bennett. The books are part of an award-winning collection of books by this same author. The first title, The Winner Is… is beautifully illustrated and is about a dog that convinces himself he can win first place in a cat contest. Any parent of a budding “star” knows that kids can get excited about winning, and sometimes they get frustrated if they are not the best singer, dancer, speller etc. This book can help them cope with the possibility of not being first place and being happy with who they are and the talents they possess. The second title High Wire Act is a story about change as a street light is blown away during a windy day and decides to go on an adventure. In addition to learning about coping with the change, a lesson about safety or the importance of different roles people play could be part of the discussion. Both books are told in rhyme and offer gentle life lessons along with questions and activities in the back. The other fun thing is that there are a few characters that pop up in every book in the collection that kids can enjoy watching out for. I was also pleased to see the books are printed on recycled paper in the U.S.A.
Earlier this month I had a chance to chat with Kathy Brodsky, author of both The Winner Is… and High Wire Act. Kathy is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She writes and promotes quality books that are timely, visually exciting, entertaining, educational and fun! As a psychotherapist for over 40 years, she is able to tap into universal emotions of people of all ages with themes that are evident in her books. Teachers have often used her messages to further social awareness in their students. After just a few minutes I could sense the enthusiasm and creativity she brings to her writing. Each book was inspired by her interactions with real people sparking her wonderful imagination. The best part is her unique background allows her to incorporate teaching moments into simple, beautifully illustrated tales. She was very excited that one of her titles is now offered in Spanish, A Catfish Tale. All of her books would make wonderful additions to a class room or school library. In addition, they would be beneficial to older students and adults trying to introduce a topic and get students talking and thinking about how the book relates to issues they may be having. Kathy regularly visits schools and I asked her what she thinks parents, teachers and students appreciate about her books, she thinks it is the open-ended possibilities that the questions in the back facilitate. Each book offers opportunities for continuing the conversation and can be a jumping off point to more activities.
To find out more about Kathy Brodsky’s books or to purchase, visit www.kathybrodsky.com. Books retail for $19.99 and are also available in Book Bundles at a discount off the regular price.