Rodney Was a Tortoise
He’s been alive longer than Great Aunt Clara and is a comforting constant in her life. Bernadette loves her pet turtle, Rodney, like a best friend. They play games like Crokinole together and share stories at bedtime. She reads as he drifts off to sleep. As the days pass, she notices he’s slowing down, and then, he ceases to move at all. The depth of her sadness is inconceivable. The next day at school, it seems no one understands. She retreats inside herself until one day, a boy from her class, Amar, approaches her and offers his condolences, opening a pathway to her heart and to healing.
This is a heartwarming book about love, loss, friendship, and restoration. Children ages four to eight who’ve lost a pet will be touched by this sweet tale. It’s likely to help them process their experience and put their sentiments into words they might not otherwise have been able to express.
The illustrations are presented in soft, pastel watercolor hues. They beautifully portray the array of emotions expressed by the characters, especially Bernadette. The text is relatively brief and is written at approximately a second-grade level, making it ideal for young readers.
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