It's such a common childhood theme: wanting what someone else has. And let's be honest- I'm sure all of you parents out there can relate, too. I know I certainly can. Because who doesn't see someone else's object of affection-- be it a shiny new toy, a pair of shoes to make you run faster and jump higher, or (gasp) even a perfect friend -- and want it for themselves? Oh, Ooko! We love you for this reason- for gently but oh so humorously exploring this theme.
In Esme Shapiro's Ooko, the titular character has everything he could want-- except, perhaps, a friend. When he sees the foxes in town playing with their two legged friends, affectionately known as the Debbies, Ooko wants a Debbie too! But when he finally does find a Debbie all of his own, this exciting new friendship may be a bit different than he had anticipated.
My parents used to always tell me that the grass isn't always greener on the other side, and the beautifully illustrated Ooko tackles this subject with such longing and humor, making it a fitting example of that notion. Sometimes the things we think we want are quite different than the things we actually need, and it takes trying-- even when the trying takes on some not so kosher endeavors -- before we learn something may not be the right fit. Because let's face it- Debbies rock-- but what's even better than a Debbie is rocking out with a friend who lets you be totally and completely yourself... No ifs, ands or itchy sweaters about it. A must read!!
Want the book? Get it here! Ooko, by Esme Shapiro. *This is an affiliate link.