Thursday, February 9, 2023

*Review* Why Are We Afraid by Fran Pintadera

Genre: Children's 3-7
Published: June 6, 2023
Pages: 34

From the creators of the highly acclaimed Why Do We Cry? comes this poignant, evocative exploration of the many reasons we feel fear.

After a clap of thunder, the lights in Max’s house go out. Max’s father lights a candle, and Max asks, “Dad, have you ever been afraid?” His father says everyone is afraid sometimes. Then he slowly and carefully begins to describe the contours of fear. He explains how even small fears can seem to flood everything around us. He enumerates the many different things that can make us afraid: shadows, feeling lonely, losing what we love, not being able to control the future and fading away. And he reassures his young son that while our fears can stop us in our tracks, we must keep going.

Award-winning author Fran Pintadera’s poetic text together with Ana Sender’s stunning imagery make for an entrancing picture book about emotions. It makes clear that fear is a normal part of life and that when we can identify our fears, it’s easier to accept them and to move past them. A wonderful conversation starter, this book could be used to help young children understand and process their fears and, more generally, why we feel our feelings. It makes an excellent choice for lessons on social-emotional learning. Back matter includes informational content about the different types of fear, the purpose and usefulness of fear, and an activity to further explore some of the story’s key concepts.

I received a copy of this book through Netgalley. This is my honest review. 

This is a story exploring the reasons why we are afraid, which I'm sure will come as a huge shock to you based on the title. It was a simple telling, but really got the whole point across. 

I really liked the illustrations. They were bright and dark and colorful and very imaginative. I get the impression that they harken back to Latin American tales as they reminded me a lot of Encanto

I could probably read this book a few times, but I don't think I'd want to read it too often. Overall I give this book 3.7 out of 5 stars. - Katie

Fran Pintadera is a storyteller, community theater facilitator and award-winning author of more than thirty books for children. He lives near Alicante in Spain.

Ana Sender began her illustration career in textile design but now mostly illustrates children's books --- and even writes them herself sometimes, most recently The Cottingley Fairies. She lives and creates in Barcelona, Spain.

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