Picture Book Review: “Little Brothers & Little Sisters”
Little Brothers & Little Sisters
Author/Illustrator: Monica Arnaldo
Publisher: Owlkids Books, Inc. (2018)
Age Range: 3-7
Grade Level: Kindergarten – 5
Little sisters and little brothers all long for the same few things when it comes to their older siblings: a turn to play, a place on the team, a chance to shine. This book starts with four pairs of siblings in and around an apartment complex, each expressing through play and daily life the many gripes and pitfalls of younger siblings.
Subtly, the narrative shifts to reflect the good things that come with having an older sibling: a helping hand, a partner in crime, a friend for life.
“Little Brothers & Little Sisters” is a touching story about sibling relationships. In the beginning, it’s all about how the little brothers and sisters want to be just like their older siblings – they want to hang out with them, use all their stuff, and be able to do all the same things. It’s clear to the little brothers and sisters that their older siblings have all the fun. Toward the end of the book however, the little brothers and sisters realize just how special it is to have older siblings!
There are so many things to love about this story. First of all, the setting is an apartment complex and brought back memories from my early childhood. Not every child grows up in a big house with a picket fence and I love this representation by the author, along with the multicultural cast of characters.
Next, even though the entire story is just over 60 words, it speaks volumes about the relationships of siblings – the frustration being the younger sibling and the exasperation of being the older one.
But, the ending just might make you cry, when the significance of these relationships is realized. The pictures dig deeper into the relationships – they are colorful, fun and enhance an already fantastic story.
“Little Brothers & Little Sisters” is a great story for the whole family. I can picture the entire family getting a big kick out of the little everyday annoyances as well as the comradery that happens during special moments – the ones that make being a sibling very special.
Such a beautiful story. Well done.
About the Author
Monica Arnaldo is an illustrator and author living in Montreal. Her work has appeared in children’s magazines as well as picture books and middle grade novels. Clients include Owlkids Books, Penguin Random House, Editions Scholastic, Chirp Magazine and Chickadee Magazine.
I obtained a copy of this book to review from my local library. I’m working my way through 500 picture books. Need a picture book review? Contact me!