A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Plenty of opportunity here for discussing feelings and friendship, especially what it means to be a best friend and whether or not boys have to stick with boys and girls with girls. Also, it gently teaches the lesson that best friends don't have to be exactly the same, and they don't have to spend every minute together. And it encourages us all to recognize and respect each other's differences.
Best friends can be the same in some ways, but also different. They don't have to do every single thing together all the time. And, i's OK for girls to be best friends with boys, and vice versa. Friendship is more about sharing common interests. Respecting and tolerating different looks, choices, and behaviors can be part of it, too.
Positive Role Models
Both Freckleface Strawberry and Windy Pants Patrick act like normal, kindhearted kids. They really like spending time together and sharing books, play and fun, and they look out for each other when they are with others. When the other kids try to convince them that boys and girls should not be best friends, they listen. But in the end, they are honest with themselves and follow their own hearts to find what it really means to be a BFF.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Freckleface Strawberry: Best Friends Forever is the third of Julianne Moore's Freckleface series. It can stand alone, but will make even more sense after reading the first two books. The issue here is whether a girl and boy can be best friends, even when they share many things in common. And, do they have to share everything to be best friends? Also, though it's not really a big issue in the book, Windy Pants Patrick has two moms. Parents should be prepared to explain that to kids who ask.
Is It Any Good?
Kids will love this latest Freckleface adventure, and grown-ups certainly will enjoy reading it aloud to them. It's a cute, funny story that carries another very positive message about learning to respect and tolerate each other's differences, even value them. Julianne Moore's narrative is entertaining and sweet, LeUyen Pham's illustrations are playfully expressive, and an important lesson is gently nudged along to the end.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.