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Children's LiteratureAppreciating what we have is the message in this story about the Corner Kids, one of a series of books devoted to character education, "Rookie Choices." When Alex comes out of his apartment to meet his two friends to walk to school, he feels left out because their new coats match. Even though he has a new coat, too—one that he got to choose—now he wants one just like his friends'. His mom quietly reminds him of how lucky he is to have a warm coat at all, and he realizes that he has been acting foolishly. Children can easily identify with the real-life situation, and they will enjoy the amusing illustrations that so clearly show Alex's feelings. The moral of the story is to be thankful for what one has. 2003, Children's Press, Ages 4 to 8.
—Diane Carver Sekeres, Ph.D.