Cover Image: Playtime for Restless Rascals

Playtime for Restless Rascals

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Member Reviews

PLAYTIME FOR RESTLESS RASCALS is a wonderful romp throughout a child’s normal day, that acknowledges to caregivers how exhausting it can be to keep up with a child all day, but does not diminish the need to play for children. Grimes emphasizes throughout the story that playing is the child’s job, which gives it respect and validation as children learn so much from play in their early years. The child’s play takes readers through the seasons, different weather conditions, and community locations, all easily relatable to any child’s personal experience, especially with the types of play crossing gender stereotypes; the child has pretend tea time and plays with trains and race cars. The illustrations are colorful yet not minimal, giving the child and their mother the readers’ focus. Overall, a delightful read that can also give caregivers a moment to sit still while sharing with their own restless rascal.

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I love this beautiful story about the fun and purpose of play! Including different types of play, seasons, rest, family, the book is a sweet look at the everyday work of a child. There is much to see in the lovely artwork, done in the same style as Grimes' Off to See the Sea and Bedtime for Sweet Creatures.
Thank you to Sourcebooks Kids and NetGalley for the ARC!

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Known for her beautiful and celebratory portrayals of Black characters and historical figures, Nikki Grimes has partnered with Elizabeth Zunon to channel that gift into a joyful and colorful ode to play. From the moment they wake up a tender and loving mother encourages her child to engage in the most important work of childhood - PLAY. She marvels as they splash in puddles, jump in leaves and create imaginary worlds full of tea parties and train rides. They only stop (begrudgingly) for a quick lunch and a nap after a full day of play - only to begin again when their father gets home.

This book is a song of celebration and affirmation written to children (and the adults who marvel at their expertise) and I could not love or appreciate this more. So often we are seeing a rush to push children into academics and structured learning at younger and younger ages, when their best learning occurs through play and exploration. Zunon’s illustrations are truly beautiful pieces of art that capture the spirit and magic of childhood and I love how the child’s gender identity is not clearly defined so that it can be a representative book for children no matter how they identify.

It should be noted that both Grimes and Zunon are Black female creators who craft beautiful, loving and intentional depictions of Black characters which matters so much in a publishing world that continues to highlight white faces and white creators. When choosing books to add to our permanent collection I try to be very intentional about finding Black stories told by Black voices, as well as striking a balance between stories of struggle and joy. This story of joy would absolutely be a fantastic addition to a home, library or early childhood collection.

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I received an arc of this title for an honest review. Mom says it's a kid's job to play, and with his mother's help, he will play all day.

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Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the early copy of this book.

This is another great title in this series. Lovely illustrations and a storyline that parents will definitely relate to! All the playing leads to adult exhaustion and tag team necessities. Fun, playful book that will delight kids and adults alike.

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Playtime for Restless Rascals is an adorable addition to this sweet series by Nikki Grimes. Perfect for toddlers and preschoolers as bedtime, or anytime, read alouds.

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Such a sweet picture book. I loved the focus on the young child’s job being play and how their energy seemed ever lasting. It reminded me of children in my own life. Loved the illustrations and the sweet relationship both parents have with their child.

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I love the representation of play as a child's job, while also recognizing that it is tiring for adults to keep up with a child's energy.

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This is an adorable book about an active child and all of the things they do during the day to keep busy and work all that extra energy out. I loved the interaction between the mother and child. I also appreciated how they got dad involved in the play at the end when he returned from work.

My very active preschooler loved going through all the different things the child did and looking at all of the illustrations! Great read.

Thanks to NetGalley and Sourcebook Kids for access to this digital ARC.

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Nikki Grimes hits it out of the park again with a perfect story for toddlers and preschoolers, bringing the lovely routines of this family to life as we follow the play of this young one. The illustrations are again captivating -- bright with bold colors, enchanting and realistic faces, and layers of detail. Highly recommend this series!

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Thanks to NetGalley and Sourcebooks for an advance copy of this wonderful book.

This is the story of a mother and a daughter. They both have work to do. They happen to be a Black family, which means that while everyone can relate to the charm and the beautiful radiant artwork, this provides a special gift to the Black child: the gift of representation.

The work of a child is Play, and the mother is supportive and loving and patient and tireless. The child is of course tireless, but the play is even more exquisite because her most potent playmate is Nature itself in its many guises.

Everything is expected: the refusal to stop playtime for lunch; the mom's eventual exhaustion and the all too brief dangling respite of a nap. And when Daddy comes home, the child is raring to go to exhaust another loving parent.

This is a lovely, perfect gift for any library or any child. It is timeless and universal and utterly beautiful.

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This is such a good book! The illustrations are vibrant, fun and absolutely beautiful! This is such a sweet story featuring a mom and child playing throughout the day. Children learn best through play, and the point of this story is that a child's job is to PLAY. After a full day of playing, they both get tired and take a rest together, which I loved! Rest is okay. Later, the Dad comes home from work and takes over playtime so the mom can continue to rest. What a lovely message about the importance of teamwork in parenting! Overall this book is cute, fun and important and Ronan loved it as much as I did. I will definitely be purchasing this book when it is published.

Thank you SourceBooks Kids for a digital copy of this book! This book is due for publication 9/6/22 and I definitely recommend it!

💙 Mommy (@𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭.𝐛𝐨𝐨𝐤𝐦𝐨𝐦) and Ronan (@𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭𝐛𝐨𝐨𝐤𝐤𝐢𝐝) approved ✅

This review has been shared to Instagram, and will be shared again around publication day. On publication day it will be posted to Amazon!

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I received an electronic ARC from SOURCEBOOKS Kids through NetGalley.
Delightful celebration of love. This mother and child spend their days together doing the very important work of play. Readers see this child play all sorts of games by themself and with mom. Near the end, there is an affirmation of Dad's role too. He comes home and also takes on the work of play. Love jumps from the pages as this child is encouraged to play and grow. Terrific for supporting families and acknowledging how important play is to our children. The illustrations bring the energy and joy to life.

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This was a cute picture book, which would also make a perfect bedtime story.

I loved the part where they talked about the game you can play with leaves, where you always win because the sky can't play.

The illustrations were really cute too.

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This was a cute book, reminding all of us how important it is to take the time to play. Splash in puddles (I love doing this with my Jeep), have tea, race cars, play board games, just have fun.

The illustrations were interesting, there were so many different textures.

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I just love how solid the illustrations are.

I love how an adult is present throughout the book when the story tries to show how it is with families with growing up kids who are super active and curious.,

The story is exactly that.

Thank you, SOURCEBOOKS Kids, for the advance reading copy.

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Representation: 10
Story: 10
Illustration: 10

A book that encourages children to play? Sign me up. Grimes did a fantastic job pointing out how play leads to learning. I love the message that playing is a child's job. On top of it, the design and illustrations are fun and eye-catching.

** Thanks to the publishers and NetGalley for the ARC in return for an honest review. **

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For 'Playtime for Restless Rascals', if I had to choose one thing I loved most in this story I'd definitely choose the artistry. The illustrations are beautiful and feature a Mom, Dad and younger child in play. Upon further investigation the art featured was created using oil and acrylic paint along with other mediums such as paper, marker and pens. All these combined somehow created these stunning images of a child doing their daily "job".

I love how this isn't some of the over done and overly saturated graphic art that's often present in kids books. You can see the emotion present on every face and you can follow the tracks made by a little kid in a puffy coat -- all these things really tie in the story and I feel without them the story wouldn't have pulled my attention as strongly.

As for the storyline I feel this was very close to my heart. You see games and some of the funny little things kids do day to day. You see a Mom participate until she no longer can and then after that you see a family in rest. You see the excitement when Dad comes home from work and just about everything in between.

My son, who is only one, enjoyed this book immensely and we played a little game of our own where we identify the teddy bear in the pictures. He would shout, "Happy!" every time he got a peak of the sweet, brown bear (his teddys name at home). It was truly amazing to see him interact as he did with this book, something he seldom does so this alone was enough to convince me the quality of this book for both child and adult.

I also feel it's important to note that it's only the more recent books (maybe the past decade or so) that I'm seeing more inclusivity present in kids books. If you can't tell by the cover this book features a beautiful family of color and I feel this is even more reason families like mine, who don't experience much diversity in their home spaces, can see that these families do exist and they're just the same as you or me.

5/5 stars, I'm beyond grateful to have the opportunity to review this for free for others to possibly find some clarity on their decision to buy. As for me, I will be purchasing this when it's released for our ever growing collection of amazing children's books.

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I really enjoyed reading Playtime for Restless Rascals. The illustrations were beautiful, and I loved the bold colours. The book teaches a valuable lesson for little children – that their job is called play! It was great that all the activities (such as playing in the puddles, catching the leaves, or having a tea party with soft toys) were relatable and common yet very popular with little children. This would appeal to many children spending the day at home, looking for things to do. As an adult I could also relate to the tired mum resting on the sofa at the end of the day, very accurate! Thank you NetGalley and SOURCEBOOKS kids for an advanced reader copy.

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"Time to get to work, little one," I tell you.

"What work?" you ask.

Like always,

you pretend not to understand.

"Your job is called Play," I say.

Mom awakens her small child with those words. She believes that her child's job is to play. With giggles and whispers between the two the busy play-day kicks into gear! Let the games begin!

Throughout the day the little one dances in mud puddles, swirls in autumn leaves, and swings high enough to almost reach the sun, builds a snowman in the snow, and exercises and plays with cars and trucks, just to name a few. The sky's the limit when it comes to filling the day with fun adventurous activities. It's a non-stop celebration of busyness from start to finish.

Mom, exhausted, calls for a timeout and a nap before dad arrives home and takes over. Mom and Dad together observe and confirm that..."At the end of the day, you know you're an expert at play!"

The illustrations are colourful, patterned, textured and they greatly enrich the text. This book is a wonderful snapshot of a loving family supporting each other through a typical exhausting day of non-stop play and engaging in life. It would be a great asset in a classroom and school or public library. It opens up many doors to great discussions. I highly recommend it.

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