Tuesday, October 11, 2016

A Bike Like Sergio's by Maribeth Boelts and Noah Z. Jones

A Bike Like Sergio's 
by Maribeth Boelts
Illustrated by Noah Z. Jones
Published Oct. 4, 2016
Candlewick Press
40 pages
Review copy provided by publisher

Goodreads Summary
Ruben feels like he is the only kid without a bike. His friend Sergio reminds him that his birthday is coming, but Ruben knows that the kinds of birthday gifts he and Sergio receive are not the same. After all, when Ruben’s mom sends him to Sonny’s corner store for groceries, sometimes she doesn’t have enough money for everything on the list. So when Ruben sees a dollar bill fall out of someone’s purse, he picks it up and puts it in his pocket. But when he gets home, he discovers it’s not one dollar or even five or ten—it’s a hundred-dollar bill, more than enough for a new bike just like Sergio’s! But what about the crossed-off groceries? And what about the woman who lost her money? Presenting a relatable story told with subtlety and heart, the creative team behind Those Shoes pairs up again for a satisfying new picture book.

My Thoughts
This is a story that many kids will find relatable. All kids can relate to wanting something that a friend has, a bike, a toy, a pet and not having the money to purchase it. They can also relate to the dilemma of "finding" something that doesn't belong to them and deciding whether to keep it or return it to its owner. 
A Bike Like Sergio's offers several opportunities for debate and discussion with children. 
~What is the right thing to do? 
~What would YOU do? 
~How would you feel if...? 
It would be fun to stop before reading Ruben's decision and have students predict what he will do. 

This author-illustrator pair have teamed up before on the book Those Shoes which involves a similar situation of wanting something and not having money enough to get it. 

Despite Noah Z, Jones saying that he is "bad at drawing bikes", the illustrations are great. He has a way of purposely using uneven lines, thick, black outlines and shadowing that gives his work a unique quality. 

Image from Candlewick.com

I would highly recommend A Bike Like Sergio's for grades 1-4. It would also make a nice text to use for opinion/debate with upper grades. 

Check out the book trailer.

See what others have to say about this book:
Publishers Weekly (Starred review)

Visit the Maribeth Boelts' website. There is also a teacher's guide
Visit the Noah Z. Jones' website.

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