Gr 4-7-While children may not be able to give a name to it, sibling rivalry is something most of them will experience sometime in their lives. Here, these common feelings of jealousy and competition within families are explored through interviews, first-hand accounts, and professional comments. The causes are discussed, as are the ramifications of not handling them in a positive way. Readers are encouraged to remember that these emotions are perfectly normal and universal. Landau explains the concepts clearly but in a dry manner. Colored-pencil cartoons amplify and break up the text. This is a book that will be most successful when used by understanding adults who are willing and able to discuss it with readers.-Pamela K. Bomboy, Chesterfield County Public Schools, VA
Mary Harris Veeder
This book's strength is its straightforward honesty: having a sibling isn't always great. The first chapter begins with a girl's monologue about what it's like being a little sister. Chapters 2 and 3 cover factors that may influence sibling relationships, such as family size, the gender of the sibs, and divorce. The final chapter discusses coping strategies, focusing mostly on building a sense of separate identity. The cartoon illustrations make the book seem more juvenile than it actually is, but they leaven the text with humor and acknowledge the intensity of relationships. Words and cartoons combine to emphasize the normality of sibling conflict and lend insight into why these rivalries seem greater at some times than at others. The brief reading list includes both nonfiction and fiction titles.