Punk Wig

Punk Wig

by Lori Ries, Erin Kono
     
 

Mom gets the love and support she needs. Mom is on her way to the hospital to get "alien blobs" zapped with medicine. The alien blobs are cancer. The treatment helps, but it also makes Mom lose her hair. One day she says, "Today is wig day," and she and her son head down to Hariett's Hair, where they find wigs of all styles and sizes: big hair, short hair,

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Overview

Mom gets the love and support she needs. Mom is on her way to the hospital to get "alien blobs" zapped with medicine. The alien blobs are cancer. The treatment helps, but it also makes Mom lose her hair. One day she says, "Today is wig day," and she and her son head down to Hariett's Hair, where they find wigs of all styles and sizes: big hair, short hair, spiky hair, and curly hair. Finally, Mom finds the wig she's been looking for—and it looks perfect with her jeans and leather jacket. Lori Ries's loving story of a mother whose son gives her constant support during chemotherapy is illustrated with warmth and humor by Erin Eitter Kono.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This positive and upbeat approach to coping with cancer will be a welcome addition - younger than, but complimentary to Patricia Polacco's The Lemonade Club (2007)." --Kirkus Reviews

"The appealing watercolors, set mostly against white backdrops, zero in on the people in the story, allowing children to see both a little bit of the mother's struggle and the happiness and love the mother and child share." --Booklist

"Handles a tough subject with sensitivity, grace, and a sense of fun." --Library Media Connection

Children's Literature
AGERANGE: Ages 4 to 9.

Learning a parent has cancer can be frightening for anyone, but it is especially so for a child who cannot understand his parent's sickness. Ries has written a simple and insightful book that can help a child understand what is happening to the parent and also provides an amusing idea for how to guide a child through the changes a cancer patient goes through. When his mother is diagnosed with cancer, a little boy visits her while she gets her "alien blobs" zapped with medicine and helps to care for her when she gets home. She has good days and bad days; on one good day, they visit a wig shop where they take turns trying on funny wigs until his mother decides to purchase a spiky, red punk wig, which keeps everyone's spirits up until she goes into remission and her own hair grows back. The illustrations are bright and cheerful, and the simple text makes a difficult subject easier to explain and understand. Reviewer: Danielle Williams

School Library Journal

K-Gr 2- "My Mom's got alien blobs inside her. They're called cancer." The bright, bouncing voice of the young narrator takes readers through his mother's cancer year, from her first chemotherapy treatment to the day her hair comes back and "all the alien blobs have gone away." A parent's sudden transformation in appearance can be a very big issue to children; it's not surprising that the focus in this book is on Mom's hair loss and the wacky wig that she and her son pick out to hide it. Quick moving, positive, and funny at times, this story might well serve to introduce a child to the impending treatment. The expressionistic illustrations are also sprightly but do depict a hospital scene, Mom hooked up to a chemo port, and a tired woman on the couch. Children wondering why a classmate's mother is sick or showing up at school bald and suddenly skinny might also find this book reassuring. Noticeably absent is any mention of the fears and tears that the grown-ups face and that children usually pick up on. All is neatly resolved in the end when the doctor says Mom is cured and her son gets to keep the wonderful, wacky Punk Wig.-Carolyn Lehman, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA

Kirkus Reviews
A serious illness is given a lighthearted and encouraging treatment as a young boy relates how his mother is undergoing chemotherapy for cancer. "She's going to the hospital to get the alien blobs zapped with medicine." Back home, he brings his sick mom a lunch tray with peanut butter and jelly and his favorite gorilla cup. When her hair starts to fall out, she announces that it's wig day. At Harriet's Hair, they both try on silly wigs and his mom chooses a long orange, spiky wig that she calls, "My Punk Wig." At the grocery store, everyone stares at his mom, wearing jeans and a black-leather jacket and sporting Punk Wig. During the winter they put Punk Wig on their snowman. By spring, mom's test results are good and she surprises the boy by giving him Punk Wig. Kono's watercolor illustrations convey a blithe touch and reflect the warm relationship between mom and son. This positive and upbeat approach to coping with cancer will be a welcome addition-younger than, but complimentary to Patricia Polacco's The Lemonade Club (2007). (Picture book. 5-8)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781590784860
Publisher:
Highlights Press
Publication date:
02/01/2008
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
9.90(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
7 - 9 Years

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