Inside: Do you have twins at home? Or maybe kids with unlikely best friends and confidantes? If you answered yes to either of these questions, TWINS, by Mike Ciccotello, is a new must-have book for you!
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One of the best parts about living where I do is that my parents and sister live just five minutes away. My sister and brother in law have four amazing children, and the youngest two are my fraternal twin nieces who are the same age (and in the same grade at the same school!) as Pickle.
Watching these three tackle the world together has been pretty unbelievable. They are so close, and sometimes it seems this trio speak their own unique language. Even cooler? Watching the bond between my twin nieces over the years, from a time when they wore identical clothing and sparkly bows to the current day, where their dynamic personalities are as unique as chocolate and vanilla.
Case in point: one wears pink dresses, the other wears Nike. One loves dancing, the other shoots a basket like Dwyane Wade. One wants jewelry for her birthday, the other wants a gift certificate to the sporting goods store near our homes.
Twins have long since fascinated me, and thanks to my nieces, now more than ever. So when a book about twins lands on my doorstep? You know I can’t wait to read it.
Meet TWINS, by Mike Ciccotello, the debut picture book by an author-illustrator who will undoubtedly become a force in the children’s literature world.
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TWINS is the story of — you guessed it — twins! One little boy and his twin tackle life as a duo and some just can’t tell them apart. Which, when considering the fact that one twin is a child and one is a giraffe, will have your kids in giggle fits. In TWINS, the twins do everything together, but they don’t necessarily approach their activities in the same ways.
As with every relationship, being a twin has its ups and downs, too. Even in the down times, though — even when it seems like you may never agree again — when you’re a twin, you can walk through the world knowing you have someone at your side who is just like you!
TWINS spoke to me in so many ways, but primarily because of the brilliant message it conveys in a unique manner: kids have an uncanny ability to look beyond what others see as glaring differences to find remarkable similarities. TWINS reminds us that the unlikeliest soul mates — whether actual twins, or even just best friends and confidantes — don’t have to look the same on the outside, for the values and qualities we possess within are what matter most. Those characteristics are the important ones, and kids understand that innately. The only reason any person eventually comes to fear differences rather than celebrate them is because they learn this behavior from someone else.
Our jobs as adults – whether you are a parent of your own children or a teacher shaping growing hearts and minds on the daily – are vital! We have so much power to help kids harness and cultivate their innate desire for goodness — to shape their inner compass so that they reach out to others upon recognizing shared beliefs, rather than turning away if they notice exterior differences. TWINS brilliantly reminds us that even the unlikeliest duo can make the greatest team! The darling illustrations and simple prose keep the story light and fun, but the deeper meaning will spark important conversations that all of us — twin parents or not — can have with our kids. Two trunks up!