Margot and the Moon Landing
Author: A.C. Fitzpatrick
Illustrator: Erika Medina
Ages: 4 to 7 years old, Grades P to 2
For children, it gives voice to their frustration. It teaches them to nevertheless, persist.
I had a hard time with this picture book; at first. I couldn’t get my head around it. Try as I may, I stumbled over and over its pages. And then I realized what was wrong. As an adult, I was meant to stumble. The book, in its brilliance, gives adults a candid look at how a child feels when she is completely ignored, set aside, and looked over– all in the guise of an innocent picture book. For children, it gives voice to their frustration. It teaches them to nevertheless, persist.
Margot dreams of space (the final frontier, for my die-hard Trekkers out there). She wants to talk about space with anyone who will listen. And nobody, listens. Her mother wants her to read books about princesses. Her friends and teachers ignore her. She even suffers from an apparent psychotic break (my characterization) and starts to talk in “Neil Armstrong” speak. And nobody even notices.
It is only after Margot scrawls her feelings on the wall of her room that her mother gets a clue. Finally, her mother begins to parent; and helps Margot find space to be herself.
For kids, the book is an excellent teaching tool in letting them know how important it is to communicate their feelings and thoughts. For parents, well, it reminds them that the word parent is also a verb. Adults reading the book will find that Fitzpatrick’s “adult-speak” may sometimes cut too close to home; and that’s okay. As long as there is self-awareness, there is growth.
Medina’s illustrations provide, especially in her carefully constructed facial expressions, all the feels: despair, anger, dismissiveness, loneliness, and finally contentment.
Will Margot get to space? We don’t know. But it sure is nice to see a girl, especially a brown one, persist in her quest to get there.
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Margot and the Moon Landing (Support an Independent Bookstore)
Margot and the Moon Landing (Hardcover at Amazon)*
More books for this Age Group can be found here.
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My thanks to NetGalley and the Publisher for providing an Advance Copy of this book. The views expressed herein are my own.
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