Boogie Bass, Sign Language Star

Holiday House/Margaret Ferguson Bks. (­After-School Superstars: Bk. 4). Aug. 2021. 128p. Tr $15.99. ISBN 9780823446292; pap. $7.99. ISBN 9780823449361.
Gr 2-5–In book four of the series, Boogie Bass, who has light skin and red hair, is having a hard time. He can’t seem to do anything right: he lets his dog destroy his little brother Bing’s favorite stuffed animal, and he almost hurts Bing playing indoor luge on the stairway. It’s no wonder that he feels awkward beginning after-school camp with his best friend Nolan, who always does everything right. This camp is American Sign Language camp and Boogie hopes the first sign he learns is, “I’m sorry.” After struggling through signing the alphabet, Boogie feels even more uncomfortable. But a visit to a school for the Deaf puts Boogie in a situation where he truly shines and starts making friends. The four After-School Superstars return in this wholesome look at how kids can overcome their own fears and insecurities by being true to themselves. Boogie’s outgoing personality is a real gift and his devotion to his family, as the oldest of four rambunctious brothers, is evident throughout. Once he gains confidence, Boogie feels less awkward and embraces his buoyant personality as a positive characteristic that makes him who he is. Charming black-and-white illustrations add to the appeal of the text. Included is background information on American Sign Language, as well as an illustration of the ASL Alphabet Chart.
VERDICT A welcome entry in the series that would be an excellent addition to the school library or an SEL unit.

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