Tiger Wild

Viking. Jun. 2020. 32p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780593118153.
K-Gr 2–A young girl and her imaginary friend Tiger make some poor choices before learning how to balance wild and tame behaviors. Initially Lily blames Tiger for a number of messes, including paint on the couch, a ball of yarn unspooled throughout the living room, and a a batch of devoured cupcakes. Incredulous of Lily’s excuses, Penny, the adult figure in this story, punishes both culprits. Neither Tiger or Lily are ready to face their mistakes, so they run away where they can truly be “wild.” They frolic in the grass, stomping and jumping and relishing in the freedom of doing as they please. Tiger’s unruliness eventually overwhelms Lily, and she longs to be “quiet and still.” Millward’s illustrations are childlike and have a relatable quality. When Lily reunites with Penny, she admits “Tiger is sorry,” a deflection children may use to communicate their emotions, but a potentially confusing lesson about personal responsibility.
VERDICT With an authentic depiction of common emotions and behaviors, the book has an uneven message, but delivers it with charm. An additional purchase.

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