Emily's Magic Words

Book review by
Patricia Tauzer, Common Sense Media
Emily's Magic Words Book Poster Image
Basic politeness primer from famous Post family.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive Messages

Having manners helps open doors, make friends, and create a happy world.

Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the suggestions for proper etiquette in this book are nothing new, but they're presented in a simple, friendly way that should be fun for the youngest kids who are just learning about "magic words."

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What's the story?

Emily begins by demonstrating the magic of five particular words, what they are, and why they work. She ends by showing the three most magical words of all: I Love You!

Is it any good?

The message of this very basic etiquette primer is as simple as its text and illustrations. Most of us have heard this all before, and even kids new to the concept will want more from this book ... more examples, more drawings. However, having Emily pose as a magician with her powers based in her polite language is a clever touch. Looking a bit like a Joan Walsh Angland character, and probably named after the grande dame of etiquette, Emily Post, this Emily flashes her magic wand to show how certain words can make smiles appear, friends feel welcomed, and mistakes not nearly so hurtful. All in all, the lessons are good ones, though the book is a little less than satisfying.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about each of these simple words and why they help create a friendlier world. Why are they called "magic words"? Can you think of times when a "please" or "thank you" did magic for you?

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