Reviewed by New_Mama
As an avid reader myself, getting my children into books has always been important to me. Using books to help children learn important messages about themselves and others is also something I believe greatly in. I was therefore happy to be chosen to review this new book ‘Daisy finds her smile’ written by Melanie Broughton. The book arrived appropriately packaged, with no excess wrapping and without any damage.
On first glance the book is endearing with a cute white duck and soft shades of yellow and green and certainly appeals to me as a mother so likely to catch my eye on the shelf. Knowing the message the book aims to share would also be a reason I would consider when choosing a book to purchase. The reader is then introduced to Daisy the duck and we follow her story of struggling to find her place and experiences of bullying, to friendship and the impact this and a smile can have. The use of rhyme throughout the story was unexpected and is a nice feature which also creates further educational elements. At the end we learn how the story is based on a real life duck owned by the author which adds more depth to the many conversations which could be triggered after reading with your child.
Throughout the book, on every page, are beautifully drawn colourful illustrations of Daisy and the other characters by Sarah Alicia Smith. Taking up over half the page, you are certainly drawn to them and they really bring the book to life. The choice of colour palate is a lot more tasteful than many children’s books which is great for the parents, although aimed at children with a reading age of 4-8 years old, I do think it maybe the adults that are therefore drawn to the book initially.
A slight concern is the seemingly delicateness of the book (a paperback and on the short side page wise so overall is quite thin) so I would be aware of this when reading with younger children. The aim of touching on the ‘invisible disability’, whilst well meaning, is also quite subtle and I would wonder how easily children would pick up on this. I’m sure however that with a little prompting from teachers or parents alike, these themes can be explored further. The addition of the parents and teacher messages with suggested discussion points and questions to promote child’s understanding and exploration of the important topic covered within the book will also aid this. I also really liked the little details such as a ‘this book belongs to’ label on the first page.
The author aims to help promote ‘discussions with children about bullying and steer them towards a kinder, fairer and more inclusive world’- a bold message for such a little book and I think it provides a good starting point for this. With Spring and Easter around the corner, I do think it would be a great gift for a child, with a message that will last a lot longer than a chocolate egg! A lovely addition to any book shelf and I do look forward to many more reads of it to come.
Rating: I would give the book a rating of 3.5 out of 5
Available to buy online here.