The Happy Book: Understanding Your Feelings & The Calm Book: Understanding Your Busy Brain (Alex Allan & Anne Wilson)

Hello, friends! Our books today are The Happy Book: Understanding Your Feelings and The Calm Book: Understanding Your Busy Brain, by Alex Allan and Anne Wilson, two books to help young bookworms understand and manage their emotions.

Developed in consultation with child therapist Sarah Davis, both books break down major emotions, what can cause them, and ways to deal with them into child-friendly language. In The Happy Book, happiness, anger, fear, and sadness are explained not only in abstract terms, but also in terms of the biological science that causes them. Readers are given tips to deal with their big feelings in healthy ways. This lesson continues in The Calm Book, in which readers are given a crash course in how our brains affect our emotions, and tips on how to calm our brains through mindfulness, deep breathing, yoga, and even a few therapeutic crafts like homemade slime and glitter jars.

A novel approach to dealing with big feelings. Rather than primer-style books on emotions, these more comprehensive titles aim to help kids understand and process their feelings in healthy ways, and they do a great job of it. Both books assure that feelings, even negative ones, are normal, and give simple yet effective tips to allow little ones to have agency over their own emotions. Both books handle their subjects nicely, with Happy covering a broader range of emotions, and Calm focusing on ways to decompress anxiety and stress. By taking the reader’s feelings seriously, it gives kids confirmation that their emotions and feelings are valid. Expressive, colorful illustrations featuring a cast of entertaining animals and kids give plenty of visual interest and sets the mood for each emotion and activity nicely. The length of these make them best for elementary-age readers and older, and JJ enjoyed the fun illustrations and expressive text. A unique way to help kids explore their emotions, and we liked them – Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

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