Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Review - William's Getaway

William's Getaway
by Annika Dunklee
illustrated by Yong Ling Kang
Date: 2020
Publisher: Owlkids Books
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: NetGalley

William’s little brother, Edgar, always wants to play. But today, William wants some time to himself. William has a big getaway planned: an escape up into his hot-air balloon. It’s the perfect place because Edgar is always afraid to join him. But Edgar decides that today, he wants to come. William is very surprised and extremely disappointed.

Edgar over-prepares for the journey. What if he gets hungry, thirsty, cold, bored? What if he gets scared? So William gives up his grand plans for a solo getaway to help his little brother up, offering him encouraging words and an exciting adventure. In the end, William loves the shared adventure, too—even though the hot-air balloon is really only the top of their shared bunk bed, which careful readers will find hinted at through clues in the illustrations. This loving sibling story celebrates the bond between brothers, the wonders of an imaginary adventure, and the value of an occasional compromise.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

William's Getaway is a sweet story about brotherly love.

William's little brother, Edgar, always wants to play with him. Sometimes William is okay with that... but other times, he just wants to get away and be by himself. Luckily, he has a special place--his very own hot-air balloon--where he can do just that. The best part? Edgar is afraid to go in the balloon. But one day, Edgar decides he's over his fear, and he wants to join William. He gets a snack and a drink, then his favourite toy because he thinks he might be scared after all. But William convinces him that he will, in fact, be all right, and the two brothers enjoy a fun day together.

The story is simple, and the overall message about patience and kindness is always welcome for this reader. William is a good big brother, and it's sweet to see how his acceptance of his younger brother turns out to be a positive thing for him as well; sibling rivalry takes a break for a few hours so both boys can have fun.

The illustrations are quite cute. If you look carefully, there are hints about the real nature of William's "hot-air balloon" (which becomes clearer on the last page).

This would be a great book for kids who are struggling a bit with sibling rivalry. I'd also recommend it to readers looking for picture books about sibling relationships in general.

Thank you to NetGalley and Owlkids Books for providing a digital ARC.

Premise: 3/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 4/5
Illustrations: 4/5
Originality: 4/5

Enjoyment: 4/5

Overall: 3.83 out of 5

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