It’s Okay to Feel This Way

Sara Biviano. Starfish Bay, $16.95 (36p) ISBN 978-1-76036-110-5
Employing the refrain “However I feel today,/ It’s okay to feel this way,” Biviano follows a black-haired, light-skinned child exploring emotions’ impermanence. Each verso page begins “There are days when,” offering a situation or several, and then naming the resulting feeling: “There are days when I have to travel to new places, meet new people, or try new things. My tummy is full of fluttering butterflies. This is when I am feeling nervous.” “But then... there are days when,” the recto page continues, offering a loose opposite: facing “nervous” is “excited.” Bold mixed-media art has a handmade feel that underlines feelings’ personal nature. Some definitions are less effective than others (“Some days, I want to be by myself.... This is when I am feeling lonely”), but this is a solid primer helping the youngest readers to identify and validate their feelings. Ages 4–7. (July)
Reviewed on : 06/04/2021
Release date: 07/01/2021
Genre: Children's
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