How to Be Brave

Candlewick. Jan. 2024. 32p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781536232547.
PreS-K–A brown child with black hair surrounded by animals—cheetah, leopard, penguins, gorillas, elephants, bear, and more—is shown peacefully walking through natural landscapes while an omniscient narrator counsels that it’s hard to face new things and normal to be nervous about them, want to take them slow, fail first, and have ups and downs. But along the way, there will be friends, love, support, and memories. With watercolorlike illustrations, this is a pitch to go exploring, to try new things, and to be kind to yourself along the way, no matter the outcomes. The big finish includes a bonfire, with many of the same players seen in the previous pages enjoying the camaraderie. These are lovely, amorphous thoughts, cheerful if unstructured.
VERDICT A kindly, if directionless, guide to getting up the gumption to try new things and to push through the setbacks; an additional purchase.

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