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Dad and Pop: An Ode to Fathers and Stepfathers Hardcover – April 27, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 2—A cheerful girl explains that Dad and Pop are different in many ways, but the same in their love for her. Although visual clues lead readers to conclude that Dad is the girl's biological father and that Pop is her stepfather, the text never makes this distinction, giving both men equal treatment. In fact, without the subtitle, the relationships might not be entirely clear. Mom is an incidental character. The daughter proclaims, "To meet them, you'd think Dad and Pop were as different as two fathers could be," and goes on to contrast their physical appearances and hobbies. While the men's favorite activities imply that Dad is a sophisticate and Pop is more earthy, children are unlikely to see much of a schism between indoor versus outdoor cooking or between motorcycling and bicycling. However, this is a minor quibble, since the key is not the men's differences but their underlying sameness. This is a positive and playful portrayal of a blended family. Bright, friendly cartoon illustrations show the happy family members engaged in all kinds of activities. Expressive faces and gentle humor add charm to the pictures. Youngsters with stepparents will appreciate seeing themselves in the story, and all children will enjoy seeing the loving attention heaped upon the protagonist.—Heidi Estrin, Feldman Children's Library at Congregation B'nai Israel, Boca Raton, FL
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From Booklist

On the first page, the young girl narrating this story announces that she has two fathers. On subsequent pages, the illustrations make it clear that “Dad” is her birth father and “Pop” is her stepfather. She shares some of the ways her two fathers are different (“Pop is bald. Dad is not”) and then some of the ways they are similar (“Dad teaches me to cook. So does Pop”). Pleasant, comforting cartoon-style illustrations in watercolor, acrylic, and pastel show each father separately but happily engaged in fun activities with the daughter, highlighting how the fathers approach even similar activities from quite different perspectives. The narrative ends with the statement, “But in the most important way they are exactly the same—they both love me!” We’re Growing Together, by Candice Ransom (1993), When We Married Gary, by Ann Grossnickle Hines (1996), and Oh, Brother! by Nikki Grimes (2008), are also about blended families, although none have two fathers present. Preschool-Grade 2. --Randall Enos
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick (April 27, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763633798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763633790
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #546,998 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Kelly Bennett writes for children--both fiction and non-fiction--mostly picture books. A native of California, Kelly graduated from Huntington Beach High School in 1976. She holds an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College.

"I write what I know about--friendship, pets, family life, adventure," says Kelly, "But I also write about things I want to know about. While I'm writing, every story is a mystery--a mystery waiting to be solved. And who doesn't love a good mystery?" Sometimes, the real mystery is what name will Kelly use on this book? Her bylines include: Kelly Goldman, Kelly Goldman Bennett, Patty McAndrews, Kate Donelly, and Jill Max, the pseudonym used for work co-written with Ronnie Davidson. (For more about "Jill Max" go to www.jillmax.com.)

Kelly divides her time between Port of Spain, Trinidad; Westhampton Beach, New York; and Houston, Texas.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Susan VanHecke on September 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Bennett does a lovely job of explaining-without-explaining that it's okay to have both a father and stepfather, and that they don't need to be exactly alike - in fact, it's pretty cool that they aren't!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Trinity on March 14, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A story of a girl who has two fathers, one who she calls "Dad" and the other "Pop." Both her fathers seem very different, but in the end, they both love her and that's what counts.

The humorous comparisons and clever illustrations of her fathers, such as "Pop wears boots. Dad wears suits," and "Dad likes to fish. Pop is a fish," showing Pop swimming, make this book a joy to read and bring a smile to readers young and old.

Families come in many shapes and sizes these days and it's great to highlight that while a family may not be "traditional" in structure, as long as it has love, it has equal value.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By vanessa joy ziff on March 31, 2011
Format: Hardcover
In this tender story between a girl and her two fathers (biological Dad and stepfather, Pop), Kelly Bennett shows us how love and compassion make the world go round. Bennett's main character first affectionately shows us the differences between Dad and Pop - sometimes subtle, other times direct. Each observation is a perceptive example of the equal appreciation this little girl has for the two most important male figures in her life. The second half of the book emphasizes Dad and Pop's similarities in a variety of surprising and clever ways: bikes versus motorcycles, baking and barbequing, orchestral and rock music, to name a few. In the end, we learn what's shared at the heart of both relationships: support, compassion and LOVE. While this book's narrator comes from a family dynamic that includes divorce and remarriage, (to which many children can relate), its ultimate message is universal. Kudos to Kelly Bennett!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By ZombieKillersWife on December 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was wonderful. It points out the differences between one little girl's two fathers but finds their similarities. My 6 year old daughter has a stepfather and a biological father. This was a nice way to solidify that although she has a unique family structure, both fathers love her and want her to be happy and safe - that is the most important thing.
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