The Children’s Book Review | January 10, 2014
Margo’s Magnificent Choice
Max’s Magnificent Choice
By Chris Kent Phelps and Cindy Kent
Hardcover: 32 pages
Age Range: 4-8 years
Publisher: Tacky Box LLC (January, 2014)
ISBN (Margo): 978-0-9899670-0-6
ISBN (Max): 978-0-9899670-1-3
What to expect: Parenting Tool, Kindness, Friendship, Language
Gone are the days of washing children’s mouths out with soap when tacky language learned on the playground makes its way home. Thankfully, parents and caregivers struggling with ways to tactfully disable distasteful words can arm themselves with The Tacky Box set: A hardcover book with watercolor illustrations, a special wooden box, a notepad and suggestions of use from the author.
From a parent’s experience and wisdom comes this new story in two books (one for the girls and one for the boys—sold separately) for warding off tacky language and encouraging kindness. Margo (Max) the monkey lives in a lush jungle with many jungle neighbors. She (he) is the fastest and smartest and prettiest (handsome) animal around, but she (he) isn’t the happiest. Converting jungle neighbors into jungle friends seems to be a problem: “She (He) seemed to always say things that made them turn away.”
Feeling very lonely and sad, Margo (Max) readily takes advice from a wise owl: “Margo (Max), you have an important choice to make. In this jungle you’ll hear many words, some kind and some tacky. … If you want to be as handsome on the inside as you are on the outside, you must choose your words carefully.” The owl provides Margo (Max) with a special box where she (he) can write any tacky words she (he) uses on a piece of paper to place in the box and remove the word from her (his) heart and mind forever. Feeling empowered and ready to use only kind words, Margo (Max) places the tacky words she (he) used that day into the box and discovers that, when kind words are used, all of her (his) jungle neighbors are actually her (his) jungle friends.
This is a well-written story that teaches kids about the power of words and the impact of making good choices. When combined with the Tacky Box the story makes a very effective and hands-on parenting tool and proves that learning about kindness can be very fun.
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