Book Review: A Mother for Choco

Rating: ★★★★☆

Twenty years after P.D. Eastman’s classic Are You My Mother?, Keiko Kasza presents a heartwarming story of another lonely bird who sets off to find his mother — but is disappointed after interviewing a giraffe, penguin, and walrus, to find that no mother shares his wings, his yellow color, his round cheeks, or his striped feet.  When he spies Mrs. Bear he knows she isn’t his mother, but when he begins to cry she immediately comforts him, just as he imagines his mother would do.  When she suggests that she could be his mother, he objects that she doesn’t have his wings, yellow color, round cheeks, or striped feet.  She laughs, “That would make me look very funny!” and invites him home to meet her other children, none of which are bears.  The story ends with the same resounding comfort as Eastman’s classic, as four children snuggle with Mrs. Bear, secure in her love even though she looks nothing like them.

The straightforward plot communicates a profound principle that families need not be defined by biological similarity.  This point lends itself to heavy-handedness, but it comes across here with simple good humor as Choco experiences a mother’s love through his encounter with Mrs. Bear.  This story may be especially appealing to children whose families have been formed through adoption, but other children will benefit from it as well.

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Publication Information: Kasza, Keiko. Mother for Choco, A. Puffin. 1982. ISBN: 0698113640.
Categories: 4 Stars, Age 00-04
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Posted on February 4, 2013


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