From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 3–Scaredy Squirrel is lonely, but he thinks that the pleasure of making a friend would be outweighed by the greater risk of potential danger. After all, there are a lot of things that bite out in the big world beyond his tree trunk such as beavers, bunnies, and, of course, Godzilla. Always thinking, Scaredy decides that the perfect friend (as in perfectly safe, clean, and quiet) would be the goldfish he spots across the park. He carefully outlines everything he will need to do to introduce himself to it, including handing over the Scaredy Risk Test to insure that his new friend is truly not a biter. What the squirrel doesn't plan for is the muddy, rowdy dog he encounters en route. However, he learns that friends come in all sorts of packages and that making an effort can really have rewards. The life lessons of the importance of overcoming one's fears and not judging on outward appearance are wrapped up in a witty package of deceptively simple cartoonlike illustrations that deliver great humor in a variety of lists and diagrams, such as the items Scaredy will need to make the perfect friend, how to outfit himself to make the perfect first impression, and an especially funny Perfect Plan map. The ebullient artwork, clever layout, and lively text make for a surefire hit.–Susan Moorhead, New Rochelle Public Library, NY
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Muted-color illustrations downplay Scaredy’s anxieties and highlight the silliness of his over-the top tactics; playfully varied page designs add liveliness to a lighthearted story that doesn’t take itself too seriously ?
The humor is silly enough that kids with their own scaredy tendencies won’t feel preached at, and others will just appreciate the delicious ridiculousness that doesn’t keep Scaredy for getting the friend he needs.