Tuesday, May 13, 2014

[BOOK REVIEW] Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco

Title:  Thank You, Mr. Falker

Author:  Patricia Polacco

Genre: Disabilities / Bullying / Teaching / Inspiration

Year Published: 1998

Year Read:  2010


Source:  Library

Content Rating:  Ages 5+ (Bullying)

Boy, am I on the roll with reading various by none other than Patricia Polacco herself!  This time, Patricia Polacco writes an autobiographical book called “Thank you, Mr. Falker” where it details the life of a young girl named Trisha who struggles with learning how to read and how an inspirational teacher named Mr. Falker tries to help her read.  “Thank you, Mr. Falker” is certainly one of the most memorable children’s books to be created for children who also have trouble learning how to read.

Oh my goodness! Imagine my surprise when I realized that this book is actually based on Patricia Polacco’s real life problems with learning how to read!  It was this aspect of this story that really drew me into this book!  I loved the way that Patricia Polacco (Trisha in this book) relates her own experiences to the audience since I felt like this would greatly help children who also have problems with reading and who were teased by this problem, which bullying is a big issue for many schools.  What I really loved about this book was the teacher Mr. Falker himself as he was a truly inspirational teacher who tried to do his best to help out Trisha and I believe that with teachers like Mr. Falker who try to help out students with their problems and try to give them confidence in themselves are the best kind to have in any school!  Patricia Polacco’s illustrations are just as gorgeous in this book as they were in her other books as the characters look extremely realistic, especially the characters’ facial expressions that convey their emotions.  The image that truly stood out the most for me was the image of Trisha crying after the kids started teasing her and Patricia Polacco had effectively illustrated Trisha’s face being slightly red and the way she covers her mouth to hide her sadness made this a truly emotional image.

Overall, “Thank you, Mr. Falker” is truly one of the most inspirational children’s books about children who have problems learning how to read that children will easily relate to.  I would recommend this book to children ages five and up since the bullying scenes might too upsetting for smaller children.

* 2001 South Carolina Book Award for Children's Book Award

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