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The Goodbye Book
     

The Goodbye Book

by Todd Parr
 

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From bestselling author Todd Parr, a poignant and reassuring story about loss.

Through the lens of a pet fish who has lost his companion, Todd Parr tells a moving and wholly accessible story about saying goodbye. Touching upon the host of emotions children experience, Todd reminds readers that it's okay not to know all the answers, and that someone will

Overview

From bestselling author Todd Parr, a poignant and reassuring story about loss.

Through the lens of a pet fish who has lost his companion, Todd Parr tells a moving and wholly accessible story about saying goodbye. Touching upon the host of emotions children experience, Todd reminds readers that it's okay not to know all the answers, and that someone will always be there to support them. An invaluable resource for life's toughest moments.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
09/28/2015
With this deceptively simple look at coping with loss, featuring a fish in a fishbowl whose companion disappears, Parr adds to the list of universal issues he has explored, including family, thankfulness, love, the environment, and peace. Parr speaks to children in their own language, pairing easily interpreted pictures with empathic text that leaves ample room for interpretation and personalization—this is a book that could easily be used as a lead-in to discussions about death, a family move, or less dramatic separations. Acknowledging that “It’s hard to say goodbye to someone,” the direct and supportive narrative traces the fish’s initial reactions to the other fish’s disappearance (including sadness, anger, confusion, and denial), which give way to a gradual recovery as time passes (“You’ll remember all the fun you had”). The reassuring message that “there will always be someone to love you and hold you tight,” reinforced by a picture of a boy holding the fishbowl, drives home the idea that, while goodbyes are often difficult, they aren’t insurmountable. Ages 3–6. Agent: Liz Stahler, Suppertime Entertainment. (Nov.)
Kirkus Reviews
2015-08-26
Bestselling author Parr turns his trademark combination of boldly colored, simple illustrations and matter-of-fact, streamlined text to the topic of loss. Without ever mentioning the word death, Parr presents a story in his illustrations of a goldfish who is missing his green fish friend; a redheaded child and a black-and-white dog are also looking sad, and a photo of the missing fish is framed on the table. The text speaks directly to readers, moving from the opening sentence, "It's hard to say goodbye to someone," to an exploration of some of the varied feelings readers might have and how they play out in behaviors. The book manages to address many of the aspects of grief: you may not feel like eating or sleeping, or you may pretend it never happened. But eventually, you'll start to remember all the good times you shared with the one you are missing, though not all your days will be good. The goldfish is a good guide on the journey, with just enough anthropomorphization for kids to identify with it but leaving some ambiguity so children going through many types of loss can relate—perhaps the fish friend just moved to a new home? With very few props, a line mouth, and a dot eye, Parr manages to give his fish a wide range of emotions and behaviors. An excellent guide to grief for a multitude of situations. (Picture book. 3-8)
Children's Literature - Carrie Hane Hung
Saying a final goodbye to someone close is not an easy emotion to handle. Parr demonstrates this message through a goldfish in a bowl. As it bids farewell to a friend (another fish), the goldfish shows an array of emotions and reactions such as feeling sad and mad, wanting to be alone, and having no appetite. The goldfish goes through different ways of coping, like remembering times shared or attempting to ignore the loss before bravely moving forward in life while acknowledging love, loss, and memories of the special one. Throughout the story, the two-dimensional illustrations are in bright colors that are outlined in bold, black lines. These pictures provide some support to the theme. However, the pictorial introductions of other background or side characters (a girl, dog, a tank of fish, cat, and a boy) takes the focus away from the main character, the goldfish, and blur the relationship between the goldfish and its friend. The type of loss (i.e. death, moving, separation) is nebulous; however, this feature may open the opportunity to use the book to talk about loss with children. Reviewer: Carrie Hane Hung; Ages 3 to 6.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316404976
Publisher:
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
11/03/2015
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
202,717
Product dimensions:
10.20(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
3 - 6 Years

Meet the Author

Todd Parr has inspired and empowered children around the world with his bold images and positive messages. He is the bestselling author of more than forty books, including The Goodbye Book, The Family Book, The I Love You Book, and It's Okay to be Different. He lives in Berkeley, California.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Berkeley, California
Date of Birth:
July 9, 1962
Place of Birth:
Rock Springs, Wyoming
Education:
High school diploma
Website:
http://www.toddparr.com

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