From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 2—This story addresses the difficulties associated with a parent's absence. Jerome tells how much he and his dog miss his mother when her job as a sailor takes her away from home, even though his dad takes good care of him. Sometimes he is happy. At other times, though, Jerome and Duffy are afraid, act out at school, or have accidents. Bedwetting is handled in a calm manner. Dad says, "That's okay, Jerome. That's why God invented washing machines and bathtubs." Jerome worries about himself and Duffy, who acts as something of a surrogate for Jerome's own experiences. The text is positive about Dad, but the watercolor illustrations oddly distance him. He is rarely shown with Jerome and never with the whole family. The focus is on Jerome, Duffy, and Mom almost exclusively. The pictures reflect the sentimental tone by showing everything as clean, pretty, and sunny. Even the difficult times do not appear very threatening. In a storm scene Jerome is asleep; when he gets in trouble at school, the picture is of him sitting in the principal's office rather than the fight itself. The story ends with Jerome anticipating rather than experiencing his mother's homecoming. By not having a tidy conclusion, the author leaves the story a bit open and more relatable for children who are also still waiting for the return of a loved one.—Lucinda Snyder Whitehurst, St. Christopher's School, Richmond, VA
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"Sure to resonate strongly with children whose parents are on active duty in the military and with many other readers as well." --Booklist
"Powerful. . . . Kids in Jerome's situation - and those curious about how it feels to be there - should find this book immensely comforting and reassuring." --Publishers Weekly
"Earnest and effective." --Kirkus Reviews