It’s hard to stay brave when it’s time to say goodbye.
Katie Honors, whom readers may remember from Sometimes I Grumblesquinch (2022), is back. This time, she explains that she is a “really brave kid.” She stands proudly “like a superhero,” climbs high on the playground, and needs to be checked on at night only once…or twice. She can even hold in her tears when it’s time to say goodbye at what looks like preschool…at first. Yum’s familiar and comforting colored pencil drawings portray the inner emotions that belie Katie’s brave front as she says, “Bye, I love you. See you soon,” her face radiating pure misery and the cheery yellow star on her T-shirt drooping. Sometimes, however, she can’t contain those feelings and she KAPLOOMS. With her eyes squeezed shut, she grabs her mother, lets out a roar, and radiates lightning and sparks. She becomes unable to hear the voices around her. Her mother initially asks her to be brave but then changes tactics, simply holding Katie and acknowledging that bravery and sadness, tears, and fear are not exclusive—that you can be “brave and KAPLOOMING” at the same time. Her loving actions model a healthy response for adults and also validate children’s feelings during this rite of passage. Katie and her mother have straight dark hair, light skin, and dark dots for eyes. (This book was reviewed digitally.)
Comfort for both children and parents in an all-too-familiar situation. (author’s and illustrator’s notes) (Picture book. 3-7)