Score: 95/100 (9.5 out of 10)
Sadie Goes to School is one of the funnest and most charming children's books we've ever read! C. James Sweeney really pulled all the stops to make this book a cute, funny, and engaging as possible. It's impossible not to be caught up in Sadie's adventures (and misadventures) on her first day of school.
Oh, yeah, did we mention that Sadie is a Sasquatch!? They DO exist!
So, being a Sasquatch (i.e. Yeti, Big Foot), Sadie is uncultured, uncivilized, and just doesn't seem to fit in. It's both hilarious and a bit sad. We can definitely empathize with a character who is in a new environment and is like a fish out of water. However, this book still excels in encourages learning and adapting to changing scenarios.
For instance, it might be fine to pick your nose and fart in the privacy of your home (as Sadie does), but it isn't appropriate to act that way in a setting which you share with other people. In a sense, this book teaches consideration and respecting the rights and feelings of other people in your surrounding. So, blasting music that you enjoy may not be the most appropriate thing when people are trying to study in a library. Firing rockets into the air may not be the most appropriate thing when it's 2 AM at night and people are trying to sleep.
The truth of the matter is: there are rules and norms that should be followed and adhered to, at least to a certain degree. It's ok to be yourself, but you also need to be respectful and considerate of others. When Sadie farts in the middle of class, it's distracting and disrupting. It is also a bit rude as it doesn't consider that other people have to smell the putrid smell who don't want to. It's comparable to when people smoke in close proximity to others.
Similarly, when Sadie uses a paint brush to pick her nose, it doesn't consider that other people might have to use the same paint brush and may not like Sadie's boogers being on it.
At the same time, this book isn't a big, huge Debbie Downer about a failure to fit in. It's actually very cheerful and uplifting the majority of the time.
Sadie is just a very positive, self-affirming character. Even when she's told “no” or not to do something, she still takes it in stride and doesn't let it ruin her day. Instead, she goes with the flow and cherishes every new experience.
Another thing we loved about this book is that the illustrations are excellent, especially for the genre! Sadie herself is adorable, a feminine little fuzzball with huge green eyes and a pink bow.
Also, text and information are presented very well. It's easy to follow and read, unlike some other children's books that bombard you with text or use fonts that are difficult to read. That's not an issue with this book.
You're also getting value. This book might look like a 30 page book, but it's actually about twice that length! Each page is basically two or more panels, often filled with colorful, amazing illustrations!
Check it out on Amazon!