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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Flying Hugs and Kisses Review

I got my first children's book in the mail to review and wanted to share my thoughts about it with you today. The author, Jewel Sample, won The National Parenting Center 2007 Seal of Approval for this book, which is a big deal!

From the back cover:

Flying Hugs and Kisses is about five children who creatively take on roles of support toward each other while showing their individual feelings about the death of their baby brother. This sensitive story of grief recovery is a great resource for parents to use to help their children understand and affirm their experience of the loss of a brother or sister.

My thoughts as a mom:

I'd have absolutely no issues letting my child read this book. It was poignant, setting up the tragedy in a way I really appreciated. At first, I thought the child would die during the delivery or something, which would be a very different story from a child dying several months later, after everyone in the house has bonded with him or her. The book will resonate with parents who have gone through the heartbreak of losing a child just as much as it will with the siblings experiencing such a loss. It's sensitively handled, as well. The pictures aren't jolting or disturbing. Emotions are handled realistically, with tears and downward-turned lips. In short, very appropriate for the subject matter.

My thoughts as a therapist:

I'm planning on letting the non-profit facility I work for utilize this book for therapeutic interactions with children. It's really that good, and I can tell you right now there are no other books in our Book Nook that address Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. There are books and books written about it for adults, but Jewel has now crafted a book that will reach children of different ages and intellects and help them cope and make sense of the loss.

The ending of her book nearly brought tears to my eyes, and I've zero experience with losing a child. It also gave me a terrific therapeutic technique I can suggest and put into practice when I encounter clients who have gone through a tragedy like losing a child. No, I won't tell you what the technique'll just have to the read the book!

You can find Jewel at her blog Jewel of a Book.


If you are an author of books for children, in particular books like the one reviewed here that you think would have a therapeutic impact on readers, PLEASE send the book to me to review. I'd love to post my thoughts here on the blog and get the word out about these books.

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Jewel Sample said...

Thank you so much for your kind words about Flying Hugs and Kisses. My hope is families with children will heal, as they courageously move forward with their lives.

Jeannie Campbell, LMFT said...

jewel - your book definitely can help families do just that. children who just don't understand the ins and outs of death and sadness will greatly benefit from a picture book such as this to help them deal with their emotions...and help normalize them. thanks for your contribution to their mental health!

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