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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Moms are special. They play with us, take us on adventures, and listen to our stories. Best of all, moms are good at making us feel better. But what about Mom? There are so many chronic illnesses that affect people, even moms, and they can be debilitating. Like migraines – it’s more than just a headache. Migraines can cause severe headaches, as well as nosebleeds, dizziness, general achiness, and nausea, among so many other things. It’s one of the ten most debilitating illnesses in the world. When a mom has a migraine, there isn’t much she can do. She certainly can’t play or go on adventures. But when she feels better, she becomes, once again, Wonder Mommy. There are many other debilitating chronic illnesses like dystonia, a neurological disorder that affects all of our movements, including our vocal cords.
Jennifer Senne’s picture book story, Wonder Mommy! A Tribute to Moms with Chronic Health Conditions, is a passionate look at a mother-daughter bond and how moms do their best to spend time with their young families even when they aren’t feeling well. Told in simple language so a young reader can read along, the author provides the positive scenario where Mom has the energy to play and have fun adventures, then the opposite is presented, followed by the little girl’s proclamation: “She’s my Wonder Mommy!” The beautiful illustrations help present the message thoroughly and the simple descriptions of Wonder Mommy’s symptoms, from a child’s point of view, will help explain things to a young reader. It’s hard for young people to understand when an adult caregiver is not well. The end of the book provides definitions of some chronic illnesses and includes some of the symptoms, which parallel the symptoms the little girl notices in the story. I think this is a great book to help young readers understand how illnesses can affect anyone, even a Wonder Mommy.