Picture Book Review – “We Toot!”
Author: Ashley Wheelock, Arwen Evans
Illustrator: Sandie Sonke
Publisher: House of Tomorrow (2019)
Age Range: Kids of All Ages!
Grade Level: Preschool and Up
A hilarious picture book for children of all ages. When a stinky toot is loosed at a slumber party, six girls learn an important lesson in body positivity and self-acceptance. We Toot! lets little girls know it’s okay to let one rip.
A group of young girls get together for a slumber party. Everyone is having fun, sharing candy and pizza, playing games, and telling stories. At the end of the girls all snuggle up in their sleeping bags – all seems well, and so it is – for now. The next morning, the girls continue with their party, laughing and dancing and having a good time when all of a sudden – one of them accidently toots! This sets the stage for a side-splitting interrogation followed by a few intimate realizations about a delicate matter.
We Toot! is SO fun! I can just hear little girls all over the world giggling hysterically as they flip through the pages of this book. Told in rhyme, the story is witty and has a quirky presence – it feels like you are singing your way through the adventure. “Smelt it, you dealt it” – this cracked me up! And while it’s fun to laugh and make fun, the underlying message of acceptance and body positivity is serious and so important. I wish (as do so many others, I’m sure) that I received this message as a young girl. We Toot! approaches natural human functions in a manner that is entertaining, positive and uplifting.
It’s especially impressive to watch the characters come full circle as they pass through the various stages of getting to acceptance. First, denial – no one admits to the offense. Second, blame – pointing fingers and ganging up on an unsuspecting target. Third, admission – someone admits to doing it and basically says, “so what.” She doesn’t back down, even when told by one of the other girls that tooting is “not proper” and “girls don’t do that.” When they finally get to acceptance the girls are relieved, happy and supportive of each other. LOVE THIS!
And, the illustrations – OMG – they are delightful! Simple, yet detailed. Colorful, engaging, and perky. The girls gush with personality and are diverse. The illustrator demonstrates her own sense of humor through the subtle, billowy tufts of air following behind the characters – even the puppy dog has an intimate moment! All of the illustrations make the story float along seamlessly.
I highly recommend We Toot! to all girls, young and old! It’s a fabulous debut picture book by Ashley Wheelock. It’s so inspiring to see people leading the charge for acceptance and body positivity. In fact, 10% of the profits from We Toot! will be donated to Girls, Inc. You can learn more about Girls, Inc. at https://girlsinc.org/.
The publisher, House of Tomorrow, supports the same message, their mission being self-acceptance, body positivity, and inclusion. Learn more about House of Tomorrow at www.houseoftomorrowbooks.com.
About the Author and Illustrator
Learn more about the author, Ashley Wheelock at: https://www.ashleywheelock.com/
Learn more about the illustrator, Sandie Sonke at: https://www.sandiesonkeillustration.com/
I obtained a copy of this book to review from the author in exchange for an honest review. I’m reading my way through 500 picture books. Need a picture book review? Contact me!