|Cot in the living room|
Author: Burgos, Hilda Eunice
A young Dominican American girl in New York City moves from jealousy to empathy as her parents babysit children whose families work overnight shifts.
Kirkus Reviews (05/01/21)
School Library Journal (07/01/21)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 05/01/2021 A young Dominican American girl living in New York City feels a bit jealous of the children who sleep on the cot in her living room. She understands that Mami graciously offers to babysit for community children whose caregivers must work an overnight shift, but she also imagines having the entire living room to herself might be grand fun. One day when the cot is unexpectedly vacant, she convinces Mami to let her sleep in the treasured spot, only to discover that the living room at night can be very scary. Burgos' simple but expressive text depicts a loving family who cares for others, and demonstrates that empathy can develop from stepping into another person's shoes. D'Alessandro's digital, cartoon-style illustrations favor purples, pinks, and greens and include many city details. The final spreads (featuring the cot now pushed into the girls' bedroom so that the sisters can make their guests feel at home) illustrate how understanding can alter a child's perspective. This heartfelt and endearing story should strike a chord with many. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 07/01/2021 K-Gr 2—The cot in the living room is a source of envy to a young girl who, in a first-person narration, resents the privileges strangers enjoy in her home. She imagines it would be fun to have the whole living room to herself, to stay up late, and sneak snacks from the kitchen. Kids whose caregivers work the night shift are welcomed with tenderness by both of the girl's parents, yet never accept offers of games or food. It isn't until the girl is allowed to sleep on the cot herself that she discovers how scary it is, and realizes how it must feel to the visiting children. And it's not fair that kids have to sleep alone there when the cot fits perfectly between her bed and her snoring older sister's. As the illustrations show, the young girl can be as welcoming as her kind parents, making sure that guests feel at home. The Dominican heritage of both author and illustrator are reflected in the characters pictured. D'Alessandro floods the pages with soft pastel colors and fills them with details of family life in a city apartment as well as the girl's swirling fantasies of what she imagines to be her visitors' good fortune. VERDICT An important message about empathy, delivered with a light and skillful touch.—Jan Aldrich Solow, formerly Fairfax County Public Sch., VA - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.