How to Negotiate Everything

David Spellman with Lisa Lutz, illus. by Jaime Temairik. Simon & Schuster, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4424-5119-3
“There are very few things in life that you can’t get if you ask for them in a rational manner and offer something in return,” asserts Lutz in this story derived from her Spellman books for adults. “Author” David Spellman is a lawyer in that series, and the text and some artwork in this picture book appeared in 2012’s Trail of the Spellmans. With a child named Sammy as her example, Lutz shows readers how to eschew tantrums, manage expectations, and move Mom from “No” to “We’ll see” (readers are reminded that this phrase is “not binding”) to acquiescence. Temairik’s digital drawings tend toward the literal, though there are some clever moments (Sammy stands in an ankle-deep pool of tears in his initial tantrum, and various inside jokes and puns are tucked into the art). Lutz ignores her own advice and overreaches for a funny ending (Sammy negotiates his way to the presidency so he can get a pet elephant), but much of what’s in these pages hits the right notes of wit, nuance, and sophistication for an audience with a burgeoning sense of confidence. Ages 4–8. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/11/2013
Release date: 05/21/2013
Genre: Children's
Portable Document Format (PDF) - 32 pages - 978-1-4424-5120-9
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