The Life of Ty Series

Book review by
Carrie Kingsley, Common Sense Media
The Life of Ty Series Book Poster Image
Kind boy faces change in family, friends in relatable tales.

Parents say

age 18+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

School projects and lots of scenes in classrooms where the books give "accidental" learning. Big focus on kids' social-emotional development, how to navigate friendships and families and feelings that aren't easy to understand.

Positive Messages

Central themes are kindness, support, and integrity. Be kind to everyone you meet. Help others when they're feeling down or alone.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Ty and his family try to extend kindness to everyone they meet, and try to help each other when they're feeling down or alone. Ty's sisters are especially good at this, which is sweet to see in siblings. The parents and other adults are caring and talk to Ty and the other kids with kindness and a sincere desire to support them. 

Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Lauren Myracle's Life of Ty series is a kindhearted look inside the life of a friendly, sensitive 7-year-old boy. Ty's experiences at home are relatable to any young reader who has had a new baby in the house, although his older sisters are probably kinder and more willing to help Ty than many kids would be. The classroom and friendship dynamics are well done, and Ty's thoughts show a true understanding of the way young minds bounce from topic to topic, and from mood to mood, often knowing that they're feeling something but can't put a name on the feeling. The pacing of the books is a bit slow, but they're great for readers getting used to chapter books.

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What's the story?

In THE LIFE OF TY, 7-year-old Ty is experiencing things many young readers can relate to: a new baby sister who takes up his parents' time and energy, older siblings, funky friend dynamics at school, and a best friend who is in (and then out of) the hospital because he has leukemia. Ty tries to do the right thing, but sometimes his frustration makes him do things he knows he shouldn't, like sneak around behind his parents' back, or wander off during a school field trip. But Ty is also very aware of his feelings, and is able to talk about them. 

Is it any good?

The pacing in The Life of Ty is a little slow, but the writing is good, giving readers a vocabulary boost here and there, and Ty's emotions are completely relatable. Ty shows remarkable maturity when he apologizes to friends for acting badly, or for a play date that didn't go well. And he has a good read on other kids' emotions, knowing how to handle a bullying kid or an attention hog. As for family role models, it doesn't get much better than the open, honest, loving, playful, and heartfelt relationships in Ty's family.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how the new baby changes everyone's world in The Life of Ty. How does Ty feel about Maggie? Why do his feelings change from moment to moment? Have you ever felt that way about a sibling or someone who takes up people's time?

  • Think about the kids in Ty's classroom. Who are they most like in your classroom, and why? Who's most like you?

  • What books about school friends have you read lately?

Book details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love early reader books and family stories

Themes & Topics

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