Always Mom, Forever Dad

illus. by Penny Weber. 32p. Tilbury House. 2014. pap. $16.95. ISBN 9780884483670; ebk. $16.99. ISBN 9780884483694. LC 2013040077.
K-Gr 2—The premise of this book is that children of divorce who must alternate between households are still surrounded by love. A variety of children from different ethnic backgrounds are depicted enjoying fun activities with one parent and then with the other. They bake together, stargaze, and hunt for tadpoles. When the children miss their other parent, the adult they are with encourages phone calls or sings songs that the other parent sang; connection with the non-present parent is never discouraged or disparaged. The simple and straightforward text would be comforting to a child faced with this situation. The illustrations are a bit stiff and have a slight greeting-card quality, and the colors sometimes cross the line from bright to garish. A serviceable addition for those in need of the subject matter.—Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ
This well-intentioned, bibliotherapeutic book reassures kids of divorced parents that there are still special things about time spent with each parent. While the outlook is rosy overall, the text honestly acknowledges feelings of being scared or missing the absent parent. The awkwardly rendered illustrations can be confusing to interpret, though they admirably feature a multicultural cast of characters (including biracial families).

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