Martha Doesn't Say Sorry!

( 2 )


Adorably clad in her pink dress and matching headband, Martha is ready to do just about anything-except say those three little words: I am sorry. But when this sweet but stubborn otter learns that niceties like cookies, piggyback rides, and hugs are for people who apologize our mischievous heroine learns the ultimately rewarding feeling that comes with saying she's sorry.

Parents and kids alike will embrace the hilarious watercolor illustrations and the irreverent humor ...

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Adorably clad in her pink dress and matching headband, Martha is ready to do just about anything-except say those three little words: I am sorry. But when this sweet but stubborn otter learns that niceties like cookies, piggyback rides, and hugs are for people who apologize our mischievous heroine learns the ultimately rewarding feeling that comes with saying she's sorry.

Parents and kids alike will embrace the hilarious watercolor illustrations and the irreverent humor throughout in this pitch-perfect picture book that offers the gentlest of lessons.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Martha, a young otter, is a girl of many accomplishments and social graces ("She does give hugs. She does share her snack. She does make presents. She does read stories"). But apologizing is definitely not her thing, and after a spectacular day of misbehaving, her family draws the line. No apology? Then no cookies, piggyback rides or hugs. Can Martha rise to the occasion? Comparisons to Olivia may be inevitable, and while Martha isn't playing in that league, she has plenty of charm. Whatley's minimalist composition approach, used to great effect in Diary of a Wombat, returns, though his single-plane perspective grows monotonous. But he never overplays his hand, and his astute portraits (the family members are especially good at upturned noses of disapproval) should elicit giggles. Berger (Junior Goes to School) is a sly, sharp writer who clearly understands just how much is at stake for her heroine, which should make the message go down easy with readers. Ages 3-6. (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Learning to apologize is a lesson that is hard for youngsters. Perhaps Martha's experiences will help. Martha may resemble an otter under her pink dress and headband, but she is more obviously a winsome, busy young girl. She does many things in her life, from sharing snacks to reading Harry Otter, but one thing she does not do is say, "sorry," even when she does "things that are…not so nice." One day Martha goes too far with her family. She then discovers that people who do not apologize also do not get the things they want, like cookies or hugs. After thinking it over, she finally says, "I'm sorry," loud enough to be heard. Everyone in the family is glad when she does, including Martha. Using watercolors and colored pencils, Whatley tells the visual story with only the characters and the most minimal of props to flesh out the minimal text. Martha is a delight to follow through her learning experience. Her arms are folded and her nose pointed disdainfully away on both the jacket and cover before she has learned her lesson. Note the difference also between the front and back end pages. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Kirkus Reviews
Martha is a pretty normal kid, for an otter-she skateboards and sings, shares her snack and makes presents, sticks out her tongue and throws things. But no matter what, she does not apologize. That is, until the day that she does some not-so-nice things to her mother, father and baby brother. Martha wrestles with wanting to do the right thing without having to say sorry, but her family doesn't give cookies, piggyback rides or hugs to people who don't apologize. Near the beginning, readers may see a bit of Eloise and Olivia in Martha's upturned nose and stubborn refusal to do the right thing, but happily, her loving family's lesson hits home and she learns to make amends, albeit at first like Carl Norac's Lola (I Love You So Much, illustrated by Claude K. Dubois, 1998, etc.). The watercolor-and-colored-pencil artwork encapsulates Martha's girliness, her better-than-thou attitude and her internal struggle with her conscience. Whatley's representation of body language and facial expression powerfully complement the text. An enjoyable introduction to what could be a new beloved character. (Picture book. 3-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316066822
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 5/1/2009
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 690,986
  • Age range: 3 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 11.20 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Samantha Berger has always loved children's books, cartoons, and comics waaay more than saying sorry. And she still does! She grew up (kinda) to write for Nickelodeon and create stories just like this one. she is the author of Martha Doesn't Say Sorry, Martha Doesn't Share, and Crankenstein. Samantha lives in New York City with her dog who never apologizes (even when she steals meatballs off the table).

Bruce Whatley never had to say sorry when he was little—at least that's what his Mum says. He still likes to play with crayons and paint. His most favorite thing in the world to paint is people. But they don't like it when he gets it in their ears! Oops...sorry! Bruce lives in Australia with his wife, Rosie, and their two grown-up children.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2010


    Back before the internet, we had Little Golden Books' The Saggy Baggy Elephant, and the Poky Little Puppy; but now the hive mind of pop culture has identified a brand new children's book superstar! Martha the Otter! I read Martha to my niece, and I can tell you it was a delight from beginning to end! The artwork is funny; and the tale of Martha the Otter is in a class by itself. Clever, endearing, and deceptively educational...Martha Doesn't Say Sorry is charming from cover to cover. This is sure to be a beloved memory for your child in the same way that your favorite childrens book was for you. Pick this one up, you WILL NOT regret it!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 1, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Kristie I. for Readers Favorite ¿Martha Doesn¿t Say

    Reviewed by Kristie I. for Readers Favorite

    “Martha Doesn’t Say Sorry!,” written by Samantha Berger and illustrated by Bruce Whatley, is shared in an audio version and is an excellent story for all young children to hear. Martha can be a very nice girl and does very nice things. However, there are times when Martha is not so nice. One day, Martha is having one of those days filled with not so nice actions. Martha wants a cookie, a piggy back ride and a hug, but Martha will not say sorry, so she will not get these things. Martha just does not want to say “sorry,” so she thinks about it for a while and decides to finally say “I’m sorry.” After saying, “I’m sorry,” Martha’s family and Martha both feel good. Now Martha says “I’m Sorry” when she does something wrong.

    This is a great story for young children as it teaches the importance of being sorry for one’s negative actions. The story begins by stating what Martha is good at, as it is important that the positive qualities someone has are stressed as well. This story is written very well as everyone does have moments and days that are filled with bad and negative choices and actions, yet how they are handled and dealt with is what is important. Saying “I’m sorry” and forgiving these bad actions can be very important. The quality of the audio story is very good and my four year-old daughter's attention was held throughout the story.

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    Posted June 15, 2012

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    Posted February 12, 2012

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    Posted September 25, 2011

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