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Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite
One spring morning Mama Goose started laying her eggs. She sat on her five eggs for twenty-eight days and Father Goose protected the nest when she went to eat or take a walk. Once the eggs hatched, Mama Goose took her goslings to the pond to learn to swim. All of them jumped into the water except one who felt the water was too cold on his webbed feet. Mama Goose named him Charley and he was different from the other four goslings. Charley had autism. Mama Goose noticed Charley's differences and asked Gus to watch over him while teaching the other goslings how to honk. Charley worked hard to honk like his brothers and sisters. The same thing happened while teaching the goslings how to fly. Charley did not want to leave his home to practice flying. Charley found new friends with whom he was comfortable. His family flock told Charley they would be back to visit him every spring and fall when they migrated and Charley knew his family would always be a part of his life.
Being Charley: Embracing Differences by Dr. Morghan Bosch and Dr. Karen Bosch is a beautiful story about a Canada goose who is different and it conveys the messages of understanding and accepting differences. The author's concept makes autism understandable for young readers with Leyla Caralivanos' wonderful illustrations that give life to the story. It is a good book to help children understand the importance of accepting others for what they are and teaching them understanding and awareness in a good way. The Discussion Questions at the end of the book make it a perfect storybook to use in classrooms and school clubs for interactive sessions to discuss Charley, the story, and its themes.