The Weird Animal Club: It's OK to Be Different; Children's Book Review

Thursday, April 5, 2018

The Weird Animal Club: Its OK to be Different
Author: Christopher Knott-Craig
Price: $14.76 | 40 pages | Ages 5-8
Available: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

“The Weird Animal Club” encourages young readers to embrace diversity and their own differences. Dr. Knott-Craig weaves together a diverse group of animals, each baring a unique physical appearance, but all sharing feelings of loneliness and isolation. As the animals meet, they begin to bond with one another and grow in confidence. Soon, they each realize being different is valuable. This entertaining and informative narrative teaches readers that differences aren’t important when trying to make friends.

Sometimes, books are educational, some are full of fun and fantasy, but every once in a while a book will come along that blends the best of both worlds. From the moment I read the introduction page, I knew that this book was going to offer a story from a good perspective with a meaningful lesson. The author’s child suffered from walking on her toes when she was very young. She felt different, other children were unkind and didn’t help with how she felt at all. Due to some of the mean things these children would say, her dad would tell her stories to help her cope with the inner turmoil and, most importantly, feel better about herself. Personally, I am not much of a storyteller, but I do always tell my children that it is ok to be different. I try to help them understand that “different” and “unique” are one in the same. We are all unique, so on some level, we are all different. After all, how boring would the world be if we were all the same?

The story introduces you to different unique animals who are initially lonely, sad, and wished they had friends. You meet Zoey the Zebra with green & black strips, Alex the Monkey with only one arm, and more. As they go along they make new friends and ‘The Weird Animal Club’ grows bigger and bigger. Each new friend has a unique different characteristic and they are looking for a friend. Each animal finds a friend and no one looks at each like they are not worth being a friend with. They love each other just as they are.

You can tell the author was personally invested in this story. Everything about the book is supportive to a child that might be ridiculed for being different. The message is one of love, not spite. An example of this is embracing the word “weird” and using it in the name of the animals club. This was masterfully done, the message comes across as one that says: “you are worth loving, and we are lucky to have you with us”. I love that this story teaches little ones that it is ok to be different. It really hits home with me, we shouldn’t judge others at all based on how they look, talk, or if they act a little different. Each and every one of us are special because we are unique. That is a message that every child should hear and cannot hear enough. This book ends up being an excellent way to get that message across.  

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post with a product to review, from either a PR agency or a company. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use or would use personally and believe will be good for my readers. Your opinions may vary from my opinions. Links in the post above my contain affiliate links. You can also go here and read my PR and Disclosure Polices.

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