I vividly remember my second grade teacher reading Beverly Cleary’s Ramona the Pest to my class. I loved Ramona, and I devoured all the books in the series. As an adult, I still feel that Beverly Cleary’s stories are timeless because she captured the feelings and experiences of elementary-aged children so perfectly (and Ramona the Pest was the first book I read aloud to my own class when I became a teacher).
When two Ladybug Girl books appeared in my mailbox, I didn’t have grand expectations, but I was pleasantly surprised. Lulu, the main character whose alter-ego is Ladybug Girl, reminds me of a preschool version of Ramona. The authors, husband-and-wife team David Soman and Jacky Davis, write simply, but the stories accurately reflect the lives and experiences of young children.
In Ladybug Girl at the Beach, Lulu is ready for her first visit to the beach. She is surprised to find the ocean much bigger and louder than she expected. Lulu manages to find other ways to enjoy the beach for most of the day, but when the tide carries her bucket away, brave Ladybug Girl appears to reclaim the lost toy.
In Ladybug Girl and the Bug Squad, Lulu’s friends come over for a playdate. The children enjoy building a fort, using their super powers, and narrowly escaping hot lava by balancing on a fallen tree. When feelings are hurt, Lulu learns to consider how her actions affect others and how to resolve problems.
These books include lessons about friendship, bravery and other emotions central to the childhood experience. At first glance, they may not seem exciting. The authors, however, masterfully reflect the voice and emotions of a young child. With the well-written text and charming illustrations, Ladybug Girl and the Bug Squad and Ladybug Girl at the Beach are sure to capture the attention of young children, both girls and boys.
Lauren is a wife, mother of two, and an avid reader. She thanks Big Honcho Media for the review copies of these books. Lauren blogs at Baseballs and Bows.