Any mother with a little boy would love reading this book. I read this book to my 2 little girls and they just could not get enough of it. They especially loved the part where the little bunny gets so mad at mommy because she won't marry him! I loved it.
Told from the perspective and in the voice of a pre-school aged child "Mad at Mommy" very simply addresses the frustration and confusion that children between three and five experience. It gives a voice to children's perspective and sense of injustice and acknowledges their capacity for anger in a gentle but honest way.
Sakai's thick layers of paint and effective use of underpainting avoid looking heavy and have a lovely translucence. Her composition, while simple, is surprisingly representational because Sakai controls light and space so adeptly. The world in her books reads visually like captured glimpses of real interior and exterior spaces. Her skill also extends to visual characterization. The iconic bunny characters convey so much with their simple expressions and body language. It's tremendously adorable, effective and true without dissolving into obvious cuteness.
In expressing his anger, the child in the story is allowed to articulate his feelings but still - having risked showing this unlikable side of himself - be assured of his mother's unfailing love, kind words and a big hug. This a sweet and very effective book that my three year old memorized after two readings. She then "read" it aloud repeatedly to herself with great relish and expression. It was very heartwarming to see her having fun with the experience of being mad and learning to negotiate this strong and inevitable emotion.
I think that this book captures much of the same emotional intensity of "Where the Wild Things Are" while staying grounded in reality. Because of the age-specific cognitive and emotional responses it's addressing, the books is most appropriate for children between three and five but the tone is not derivative at all and I really enjoy reading this book aloud. Again, the art is beautiful. I very highly recommend Sakai's "The Snow Day" - it's also wonderful.
Every child and parent will relate to the look on bunny's face. Someone isn't very happy. How will everything turn out? A great addition to stories about feelings.
yellow_lion_354 thinks this title is suitable for All Ages
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