First World Kid Problems aka Penguin Problems
Penguin Problems by Jory John and illustrated by Lane Smith (published Sept 27, 2016)
Upon further reflection, ie after my second read-through of Penguin Problems, I think it could be called First World Problems too. I think I've established that once we love an author, we love an author. Jory John had the indisputable honor of being the first book review on this blog for I Love You Already. Well, as soon as I saw that he had a new book out AND that it was about penguins, I was sold. Even better that it's about a complaining penguin who doesn't realize how good he has it.
I love my girls, I do. They are loving and creative and imaginative and they love to read. They also occasionally get on my every last nerve. It's the mere fact that they are my roommates for eighteen years and I have to deal with their mess along with guiding them in how to learn how to deal with their messes etc. And reading about this penguin grumble about every little thing reminds me of when the girls are a bit overwhelmed and then every little thing is A BIG DEAL. I remember those days, especially those pre-pubertal emotional days. My god, I'm reliving them with Mini-Me Bookworm. As I tell her all the time, "I am You and You are ME" because even though I really think she is Me 2.0, just new and much improved, we have similar personalities. And sometimes that means that she can be snappy instead of sweet and a tiny bit emotional. (Sorry, Mini Me.) And, yes, I do realize that my mom is reading this and laughing now. Because she dealt with it as well.
Penguin Problems chronicles a pessimistic penguin who is quite picky about every single thing. He is not happy with himself or his environs. And he gets a not-so-rude wake up call by a walrus. The penguin is pretty much a toddler. Or one of my kids. And the illustrations are wonderfully realized. The penguin community is rotund and indistinguishable. The snowy environment is accomplished with wonderful spots and minimal colors. And the penguin? Despite being cantankerous, he really is quite endearing.
See? I can complain too. But I'm surrounded by books, surrounded by loved ones, I have food and a roof over my head. What more can I ask for?
Rating: On the floor. Because I've already read it a few times today. And because we're going through emotional times in our house for no darn good reason so I chose to buy this book and The Color Monster (review forthcoming) at a recent trip to the bookstore. Because my girls could stand to learn from the subtext. And maybe I could too. :D
It's a perfect book for those of us who sometimes need to see the silver lining. Or who have emotional kids--and they're ALL emotional.
Ages: Terrible twos on up. That sounds terrible. For moody twos and moody blues?