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The Invisible Boyby Trudy Ludwig
Synopses & Reviews
Meet Brian, the invisible boy. Nobody ever seems to notice him: he's the last picked for a team during gym. The only one not invited to the latest birthday party. He spends most of his time drawing pictures of fantastic things, like dragons, aliens, and superheroes.
But when a new boy, Justin, arrives, Brian is the first to make him feel welcome. And when Brian and Justin team up to work on a class project together, Brian finds a new way to shine.
Introverted children are often overlooked in the classroom, even by teachers, who are kept busy attending to students who more outwardly need their attention. This picture book, by a powerhouse team, gently addresses the needs of those quieter children, who need attention too.
"'Can you see Brian, the invisible boy?' Ludwig (Better Than You) asks readers. Brian's classmates seem to see right through him when it comes to the lunchroom, playground, or birthday parties. Even Brian's teacher is too busy with the kids who 'take up a lot of space.' A new kid named Justin notices Brian's kindness and drawing talent, and he matter-of-factly changes the paradigm ('Mrs. Carlotti said we can have up to three people in our group,' Justin tells a classmate who wants to exclude Brian). Gradually, Brian — whom Barton (I Like Old Clothes) has heretofore depicted in b&w pencil with sad, vulnerable eyes — becomes a smiling, full-color character. Ludwig and Barton understand classroom dynamics (Barton is especially good at portraying how children gauge the attitude of their peers and act accordingly) and wisely refrain from lecturing readers or turning Justin into Brian's savior. Instead, they portray Brian's situation as a matter of groupthink that can be rebooted through small steps. It's a smart strategy, one that can be leveraged through the book's excellent discussion guide. Ages 6 — 9. Illustrator's agent: Christina A. Tugeau, CATugeau. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
TRUDY LUDWIG is the author of many books for children, including My Secret Bully and Confessions of a Former Bully. An active member of the International Bullying Prevention Association, she is a sought-after speaker who collaborates frequently with organizations like The Ophelia Project, Hands & Words Are Not For Hurting Project, and Putting Family First. Trudy has been profiles on national television, radio, and in newsprint, and her books have received the Mom's Choice Gold Award, the CCBC's "Best of the Best" award, and have been recognized as NCSS-CBC Notable Social Studies Books for Young People.
PATRICE BARTON earned a BFA in studio art from the University of Texas in Austin, where she lives with her husband and son. Her books include Sweet Moon Babywritten by Karen Henry Clark; Mine! by Shutta Crum; I Like Old Clothes by Mary Ann Hoberman and Rosie Sprout's Time to Shine by Allison Wortche—all available from Knopf.
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