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I Wish Daddy Didn't Drink So Much (An Albert Whitman Prairie Book) Paperback – January 1, 1998

14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 2 A Christmas fiasco paves the way for young Lisa to share her feelings and frustrations about the duality of her alcoholic father's behavior, its immediate effect on their holiday celebration, and the long-term effects on her family as well. Skillfully interwoven is family friend Mrs. Field, a recovering alcoholic herself, who provides a somewhat happy ending to a relatively disappointing day. Vigna's familiar pastel watercolor washes provide a soft and gentle vehicle for depiction of both action and emotion. Although Kevin Kenny's Sometimes My Mom Drinks Too Much (Raintree, 1980) is the closest book in terms of target group, Vigna still reaches a younger audience in her brevity of text and emotional scope. A note to adults that provides insight into the child's feelings and tips for parents in assisting their child's understanding of the situation is appended. Addresses and telephone numbers are listed for Al-Anon and the Children of Alcoholics Foundation. This title is best placed in a parenting collection to facilitate and encourage sharing situations. A realistic portrayal that provides a balanced picture of the sober and alcoholic parent and an early primary age child trying to make sense of it all. Celia A. Huffman, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Ohio
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Vigna still reaches a younger audience in her brevity of text and emotional scope."

School Library Journal

"Vigna's line-and-wash illustrations are adept and compassionate."

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Series: An Albert Whitman Prairie Book
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company; Reprint edition (January 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807535265
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807535264
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 7.9 x 0.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.3 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,258,665 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Carol Watkins on May 31, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A girl and her mother deal with the father's drinking during Christmas. The father builds his daughter a beautiful handmade sled, but is then too drunk to keep his promise to go sledding with her. Mother and daughter take theri Christmas turkey to the home of an older woman who is a recovering alcoholic. This woman provides them with a safe haven of understanding and acceptance. She acknowleges the hurt, but encourages the child to find ways to be happy even while her father continues to drink.
The story could help the child of an alcoholic understand that it is not the child's fault.
At the back of the book is information and a phone number for Alanon.
Carol E. Watkins, M.D.
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Format: Paperback
(0 star review)

Happened across this book in the library, and I thought I'd put in a few words against it, since it's doubtless highly recommended among books to help kids "cope" with alcoholism in the family; that is, if your idea of teaching children to cope is training them to accept their fate, bury it in euphemism, and move on from one depressing day of abuse to another in the shadow of what this book seeks to excuse as a sickness.

The father in this book is typically horrendous, lying and near-abusing his daughter, yet the non-alcoholic mother insists on keeping her child in this situation, breaking down in tears rather than offering a beacon of safety in what must be the poor child's hopeless world.

True, this book is realistic. Yet I cannot imagine any parent or counsellor offering it to a child, since it doesn't offer any real advice besides
a) alcoholism is something to be ashamed of (the girl says she used to not have anyone she could talk to about her father, but now her mother has one friend she CAN confide in)
b) feel free to get out for an evening of fun before returning to the same bad situation.

Yuck, yuck and double-yuck. I'm all for building a body of fiction to help kids cope with issues, but this is a nasty addition to the bunch and could destroy more than a few already-fragile kids...

POSTSCRIPT, added June 16, 2010:
As adults, it's OUR job to protect kids. You wouldn't buy a book called "Pedophilia: my uncle has a disease and he can't help molesting me." Or would you?
If you're thinking of giving a child a book that encourages her to excuse a parent's inexcusable behaviour, please: skip the "understanding" literature and get the child out of the situation if you can.
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27 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Jerome Albertson on May 19, 2011
Format: Paperback
I bought this book for my daughter after she caught me passed out in the garage during my court-ordered visitation time. (I was as surprised as she was: I still had half a bottle of Jack left when she kicked me awake!)

I figured this story might help since she always has so many questions. Daddy, why are there so many cans in the crawl space? Daddy, why do you walk so funny? Daddy, why do you keep yelling at the chair? Daddy, why do you drink a whole can every time Barney says "I Love You"? (I guess I need to get her a book on how drinking games work next.)

I gave it to her and she liked it since her usual gift from me is a bunch of Busch Light cans taped together in the form of a heart. I couldn't read it to her, because the words looked blurry after a half-case of Pabst, but she did just fine on her own. The words and pictures really told a good story.

When her mom came to pick her up, she just rolled her eyes and said to leave the book with me. Oh well, her loss is my gain. I came to find out this book also makes an excellent coaster for my beers!

I'd recommend this book to anybody whose kid has a dad who likes to enjoy a few dozen "cold ones" here and there. I say "crack open" the book and enjoy the smooth, crisp words of this story!
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By Holly on June 28, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is an excellent resource for a difficult topic. It presented the family problem of alcoholism in a caring, non-judgemental way. It illustrates how the alcoholic's family, particularly the child, is impacted by his disease, in ways that others may not recognise. It also illustrates the need for outside support for the family. It was not scary and did not lay blame. It fostered a sense of empathy, not only for the family, but for the alcoholic as well. It was a good story, and may serve as a springboard for future discussions. To the author, on behalf of my daughter, thank you.
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By Ryan W May on November 5, 2014
Format: Paperback
Got this for my girlfriend whose dad is an alcoholic...as a joke. It's entertaining, but I imagine it would be therapeutic for someone younger going through issues of an alcoholic father. Story's about a drunk dad who buys his daughter a sled for Christmas, but gets too drunk to take her sledding. Reading it made me feel awful for buying it as a joke -- the issues inside seem pretty real.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 26, 2014
Format: Library Binding Verified Purchase
The perfect gift for anyone in your life who likes making babies by day and drinking scotch by night. Got this for my buddies wife and newborn this past Christmas; I think she may hate me now.
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Format: Paperback
Horrendous !!
Why do we wonder why there are so many stereotypes in the world when there are authors like this? What’s worse is it that this type of book may end up in my child’s school library. I will personally make sure that my children do not read any books by this author at home or at school.
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