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Red, White, and Blue Goodbye Hardcover – April 30, 2005

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 2–As her father, a Navy man, prepares to go to sea, a young girl describes her feelings about his departure. She doesn't want to say good-bye, and he comforts her by pointing out certain images–the red flag on their mailbox, white clouds in the sky, and blue water–that will help her remember him. Ultimately, she learns that while having her father leave is hard, there are ways to stay connected with him. The softly told story is complemented by realistic watercolor paintings. Similar in tone and theme to Mindy Pelton's When Dad's at Sea (Whitman, 2004), Tomp's book, while still warm and fuzzy, adds a main character with gumption. She hides her daddy's boondocker boots, necessary for working on the ship's deck, hoping that will keep him home. Of course, it doesn't, and he boards his ship, attired in his dress whites, carrying his sea bag. Another sensitive and caring title for those service families who go through separations from loved ones.–Pamela K. Bomboy, Chesterfield County Public Schools, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

PreS-Gr. 2. A young girl struggles with the impending departure of her father, a navy man, as he prepares to leave on a six-month tour of duty. She hides in the shed, then in his sea bag, and finally she hides his boots under her pillow. Daddy is patient with her, and, together with his daughter, he makes milkshakes, goes for walks, and takes a last trip to the ocean before he leaves. He also tells her to think of him when she sees the red flag on the mailbox, the white clouds in the sky, or the blue ocean, and after he leaves, the girl makes red, white, and blue pictures to send to Daddy overseas. The softly colored watercolor-and-pencil illustrations show the family's preparations and enhance the gentle moments that father and daughter spend together in this tender, well-paced story that acknowledges the sadness of saying good-bye. Karen Hutt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Walker Childrens; First Edition edition (April 30, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802789625
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802789624
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 0.4 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,270,787 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Sarah Wones Tomp currently lives with her family in San Diego, California where she reads, writes, teaches creative writing, and almost always takes a daily nap.

She's never made moonshine, but she has tasted it... All in the name of research for her YA novel, My Best Everything (Little, Brown: March 3, 2015).

She has a MFA in writing for children and young adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By J. Yuwiler on November 5, 2005
Format: Hardcover
"Daddy is a navy man, a sailor man, a brave man. He's my daddy too." So begins Sarah Wones Tomp's tender book about a young girl whose father is shipping out to sea. I love the realistic interaction between the daughter who does everything she can to keep her daddy home with her and her parents. With understanding and compassion (furthered by Ann Barrow's beautiful and sensitive illustrations) father and daughter share special moments and routines that the father manages to translate into tangible ways his daughter can be close to him, even while they are physically far apart. A great book for any family facing separation due to military duty or even any long separation. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Melissa Sack VINE VOICE on July 1, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This is a heartwarming story of a little girl who's dad is in the Navy. She misses her dad when he is away at sea. Her dad has some special rituals they share before he goes. He tells his daughter to write him a letter and stick it in the mailbox and to put the flag up. He says that when she looks at the flag and it's down he will be thinking of her. He also tells her to look and the clouds and think of him thinking of her under the same white sky. Then he tells her to look at the ocean and remember that he's not far way, just right across the blue ocean. She remembers Red flag, white clouds, and blue ocean while her dad is gone. This helps her to connect to him even when he's far way.

What did you like or not like about the book?

Lots of kids have parents who are way in the service of some type. They will relate to the feeling of the girl in the story well.

Would you recommend the book? Why or Why not?

Yes. It a great read aloud for classroom and story times.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A military wife on February 6, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This was such a good book. The illustrations were vivid and beautiful, and the child's voice was very real. It gave my daughter a way to voice the emotions she had while saying goodbye to her father, who is in the Army. The father in the story gave his daughter a touching way to remember that they were close and she was not forgotten...by seeing the "Red, White, and Blue" in the everyday things around her. I highly recommend this book to all military families, Navy or not.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. Wones on June 17, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This book tells the story of a little girl coming to terms with her father going out to sea on a tour of duty in the navy. It is wonderfully told in a way that appeals to the sensibilities of kids and touches the hearts of adults. My son's first-grade class really enjoyed this book, particularly the ways the girl tries to stall her father from leaving. And, Ann Barrow's illustrations are, as usual, breathtaking.

BUY THIS BOOK! You will enjoy it.
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Format: Hardcover
A young girl tries to stall the inevitable; her father is being deployed, and there is really nothing she can do to stop it. She does, however, go hide in the shed behind the lawn mower and bikes. She also tries to hide in his sea bag, and she hides his boots. Her father, lovingly, spends the time needed to reassure her, and to help her see little, everyday things that will remind her of him. The story line by Sarah Wones Tomp is very sweet, and the illustrations by Ann Barrow are beautiful, and it realistically depicts a difficult time for a family. I think this would be a good book for anyone who is having a separation from a parent, especially good for those children who will have to live with a long military absence of a parent.
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