Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 4 members
What If Wilhelmina is a creative, inclusive, and engaging children’s book in which one little girl can’t stop thinking about all of the what ifs. I especially loved how the illustrations were engaging for both children and adults but alluding to and including famous art from history!
Princess Fuzzypants here: Silly Wilhelmina. There are lots of dangers out in the big world which is why being an indoor cat is for me. But sometimes there are temptations beyond our endurance and we felines must go chase after it. Like Wilhelmina and the squirrel. What the kitty does not realize is how worried her human would be. That is where the what ifs of the title come into play. All ends well and has some charming pictures as well as a subtle inclusion theme. But humans can be hard to train so at the end Wilhelmina has the last laugh on them all. Four purrs and two paws up.
I like the completely nonchalant featuring of a mixed-race family with two dads. That is exactly what I want my students to see on the page--just one more group of humans living their lives. The illustrations are very animated and lively. The book has a lot of potential for interactive reading, so I would probably choose it for one-on-one or small group reading over circle time. Some of the imagined scenarios for the missing cat imply potentially mortal peril, so I would just be aware of that if a child winds up genuinely scared for Wilhelmina. This is a great springboard to discuss anxiety and "what-ifs" with kids, but I really, really would have loved to have seen some discussion of age-appropriate coping strategies. The main character is told not to worry and that the problem will resolve itself and that's basically what winds up happening. Discussing how to manage the "what-ifs" would have been awesome, but parents and teachers can always add those to the conversation on their own. Many thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review!