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Reviewed by Michelle Robertson for Readers' Favorite
Kids are often confused about anything or anyone different from themselves or what they are used to being around. It is normal and very common. Thus it's usually the case when meeting different people. Sam is a new student and notices a boy (Jacob) in the back of the classroom, secluded from everyone else, even at recess. Some kids would not give it another thought, some kids may turn their frustration of not knowing what’s going on into bullying, and others use their curiosity and determination to find a way to connect with the “different” person in class. Children are so innocent and pure hearted, unless taught otherwise. Jacob wanted so badly to befriend the “different” student, even when he himself was “different” because he was the new student. Jacob went out of his way to get help from his teacher and fellow students in hopes of interacting with Sam.
Author Kristi O'Callahan does a fantastic job portraying a very common social issue and solution with children today in Jacob and Sam: A Friendship Story. With simple wording, and beautiful illustrations to portray their meaning, Kristi O’Callahan connects with young readers easily. Young readers can relate to this story because it tells a tale of friendship, curiousness, differences, individuality, adapting, problem solving, and solutions - all within a school environment. Most young readers go through a similar situation or know someone who has while attending school. Kristi O’Callahan's short children’s story can aid readers through a situation they may have similar to the one they read about in the book. Libraries and school guidance offices would benefit from having a copy of this book for aiding in social issue lessons or questions readers or students may have about different behavior among their fellow classmates, friends, or other persons in general.