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The Best Worst Brother Hardcover – June 3, 2005


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 4–This sequel to We'll Paint the Octopus Red (Woodbine, 1998) follows the relationship between three-year-old Isaac, who has Down's syndrome, and his older sister, Emma, who is frustrated by his slow language and motor development. Because he does not yet have the skills required for speech, the family attempts to teach him sign language, which is a transitional system of communication for children with Down's syndrome. Emma works hard to make her brother understand, but he doesn't seem to make much progress. However, by the end of the book, he demonstrates that he is capable of learning, albeit at a slower pace than she expects. Emma, in turn, shows more understanding of his developmental disability and takes great pleasure in his successes. The illustrations are softly colorful, but Emma and Isaac have identical facial features and expressions. Children who have not read the earlier title may not know this is a story about this condition until the question-and-answer section at the end. The text is simple but the message could be shared with a fairly wide audience.–Robyn Walker, Elgin Court Public School, St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada
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Review

"Siblings will find this book...both educational and encouraging." -- NDSS Update, Fall 2005

"This book would be a nice addition to a children's library at home or school." -- Down Syndrome News, Volume 28, Number 6

"This is an endearing and realistic look at an evolving sibling relationship." -- NADS News, November 2005

"[R]efreshingly honest look...showing negative emotions while retaining a believable sense of optimism and affection." -- Notes from the Windowsill (Flipside Families bibliography)

"[W]onderfully written and illustrated." --NewsLine (Federation for Children with Special Needs), Volume 26, Number 2, Fall 2005
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 and up
  • Grade Level: 1 and up
  • Hardcover: 26 pages
  • Publisher: Woodbine House (June 3, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1890627682
  • ISBN-13: 978-1890627683
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.8 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #946,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

S.A. Bodeen is the author of the acclaimed YA novels The Compound, The Gardener, The Raft, and The Fallout. She is also the author of the Shipwreck Island series for middle grade readers. Raised on a dairy farm in Wisconsin, she was a Peace Corps volunteer in Tanzania, an experience which inspired her to write Elizabeti's Doll, her first award-winning picture book. She has a BS in education, an MFA in writing, and has lived in eight states, two African countries, and on a remote Pacific atoll. She currently lives in the Midwest and travels the country doing school visits.

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A. Ruiz on February 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
My family and I really enjoyed this book. It was easy to follow for my kids (2-6 years) and it had a very valuable lesson to learn about their little brother who also was born with Down Syndrome. The pictures are very true to life. It helps give some insight into our son's future and how we can handle behaviors in a positive way. Thanks. We need more books like this one.
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Format: Hardcover
The Best Worst Brother is an engaging picturebook about an older sister struggling to get along with her three-year-old brother with Down syndrome. Her brother can't talk yet, so she and her parents try to teach him sign language to help him communicate. She is frustrated that her brother isn't as cheerful or as easy to please as he was when he was a baby, while at the same time he isn't grown up enough to talk or play with her. But an exciting visit to the school's Open House day shows that Isaac really is learning and growing up - one day at a time - and that he really is her "Best Worst Brother". A brief section of questions and answers about sign language rounds out this excellent book especially meant to be shared for young children with family members or friends who have Down syndrome.
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Format: Hardcover
The Best Worst Brother is an engaging picturebook about an older sister struggling to get along with her three-year-old brother with Down syndrome. Her brother can't talk yet, so she and her parents try to teach him sign language to help him communicate. She is frustrated that her brother isn't as cheerful or as easy to please as he was when he was a baby, while at the same time he isn't grown up enough to talk or play with her. But an exciting visit to the school's Open House day shows that Isaac really is learning and growing up - one day at a time - and that he really is her "Best Worst Brother". A brief section of questions and answers about sign language rounds out this excellent book especially meant to be shared for young children with family members or friends who have Down syndrome.
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By Crystal on June 25, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I think this story does a nice job depicting life and true feeling of a sibling to someone with Down's syndrome. I especially enjoyed the sign language questions and answers at the end.
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