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That Makes Me Mad! Hardcover – July 1, 2002


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"The Tragic Age: A Novel"
Stephen Metcalfe's brilliant, debut coming-of-age novel will teach you to learn to love, trust and truly be alive in an absurd world. Learn more

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Nina's ire is stirred by her own limitations, by adults' underestimation, by rules and by toys that insist on getting lost. Kroll (The Biggest Pumpkin Ever), who first published this text in 1976, catalogs these and other peeves with sympathy and honesty, while Davenier (The First Thing My Mama Told Me, reviewed April 22) contributes shimmering, balletically brushstroked spot watercolors that trace the heroine's tempest-tossed internal state. "When you get mad at me and it's not my fault, that makes me mad," Nina says, the titular refrain spelled out in bold type. The words lead into a bathtub drama, in which Nina is left in charge of Tony, her toddler brother and co-bather. As Tony gradually floods the floor (Davenier sends ribbons of translucent blue color flying from the tub and Tony's mouth) Nina's countenance grows stormier, then changes to indignant when her mother holds her responsible. This pattern repeats with scenarios familiar to children and parents everywhere, each rendered respectfully by the artist, who still manages to uncover the humor in each situation. Can Nina's wrath ever be defused? The last spread supplies the answer: "But it makes me feel better when you let me tell you how angry I am!" A warm embrace with her mother on the final page proves that when her frustrations are acknowledged, even Nina can't stay angry for long. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 1-A story published in 1976 (Random; o.p.), newly illustrated. Nina talks about all of the things that really make her mad, which is just about everything. It angers her when her dad tells her she is going to love fish for dinner, when she really hates it, or when her mother punishes her because her little brother gets water all over the bathroom floor, when she was supposed to be in charge. She gets mad at herself when she tries to dress herself and "it doesn't come out right." And, "When it's my turn to talk and nobody will listen, that makes me mad." The use of different print sizes and fonts to emphasize mood and expression is visually effective. Colorful, humorous cartoonlike vignettes capture the kindergartner's frustrations and joys in her relationships with her parents, sibling, and friends. This is an excellent concept book to introduce emotions and the importance of controlling them. Teachers can also use it to introduce the nuances of language in print.
Wanda Meyers-Hines, Ridgecrest Elementary School, Huntsville, AL
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: SeaStar (July 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158717183X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1587171833
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 0.4 x 10.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,503,934 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Steven grew up in New York City, on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Steven's parents were very stylish. His father had a mustache and wore suits with a vest and a watch chain. His mother wore fashionable dresses and big hats. She was a great storyteller, which is probably where his love of telling stories began.

But he also had his Upper West Side neighborhood, a wonderful ethnic stew of Jewish, Latino, Chinese, and Viennese. Wandering those streets, experiencing the restaurants and the pastry shops, the delicatessens and the movie theater, the corner drug store and the corner book shop, Steven began to recognize a wider world, a world outside his own that would make him want to tell stories, travel, and be a writer.

Many of his books have come out of that neighborhood. The kids in his building all played downstairs together, under the watchful eye of Gordon, the doorman. The sharing they did can be found in THE BIGGEST PUMPKIN EVER and its sequels. The bullying, followed by sharing, can be found in JUNGLE BULLIES. The spark for his two novels of Italian immigrants in 1890's New York, SWEET AMERICA and WHEN I DREAM OF HEAVEN, came from hours listening to his night watchman, Tony, tell stories in the lobby after my Saturday night dates.

And there was Riverside Park, just a block away, where he played stickball near the railroad yards and cowboys and Indians on the green lawns, and where he watched an endless parade of dogs that morphed into an endless parade of dog stories, from IS MILTON MISSING?, his very first book, to A TALE OF TWO DOGS and POOCH ON THE LOOSE, his ode to New York at Christmastime.

Steven attended Hunter College Elementary School and McBurney. From there, he went to Harvard, graduating with a degree in American History and Literature. He decided to become an editor instead of a writer, improving other people's books instead of writing his own. But finally, he had to get out of publishing and write. He moved to Maine and struggled, writing now for both children and adults. Four years later, back in New York, Steven met a children's book editor named Margery Cuyler, who was the first to publish his work. He wrote 100 books for children, everything from picture books to American history to novels for young adults.

Steven married a journalist, Kathleen Beckett, and lived in NYC and an old carriage house in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. He spoke at schools and conferences all over the world.

Steven Kroll passed away on March 8, 2011 following complications from surgery. He was the beloved author of the New York Times Bestseller's list "Biggest Ever" series from Scholastic. Two writing awards have been established in Steven's name: the Steven Kroll/PEN American Center Award for the best text of an illustrated children's book, and the Steven Kroll Writing Award, given to a deserving student at St. Joseph's School in the Bronx.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. B's Point of View on April 26, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This book offers many examples of what might make a child angry. In many of the illustrations the child feels angry because an adult doesn't listen, doesn't keep a promise, or won't allow her to help, etc. In my opinion it could give a child with anger problems more reasons to feel angry. It almost feels like the book was written for adults who are unintentionally provoking their child's anger. Books I highly recommend are: If Everybody Did by JoAnn Stover, Cool Down and Work Through Anger by Cheri Meiners (which offers positive ways to deal with anger), Have You Filled a Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud, and for children 9-12 Growing Up with a Bucket Full of Happiness: Three Rules for a Happier Life by Carol McCloud.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DJ Joe Sixpack HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on September 12, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is a great book for learning to talk about and work through strong negative emotions, which all children have, providing a model for how to be specific about what is making you mad, and how the frustration makes you feel. It is useful for both children and adults, and is a perfect tool to help open a dialogue about emotions and anger, and how to figure out ways that children can make themselves heard in a healthy, respectful manner. If tantrums, etc., have become a big issue in your family, this is definitely worth checking out. (ReadThatAgain)
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By K. COLLINS on February 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I teach 5th, used to be in K. This book will work for all ages. Younger ages is more obvious. For upper grades, discuss emotions. Write about times that make them mad, jubilant, irritated, woeful... Have them write poems "inspired by Steven Kroll."
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By H. D. on January 7, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When my daughter was three, she was always getting upset quickly. After reading this book many times and showing her that getting upset would not get her what she wanted, she started to understand the meaning behind the book.
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