Author: Sanchez, Victoria M.
Pilar has social anxiety, but when tryouts for her favorite ballet are held she uses the coping techniques she has learned and her love of dance to persevere.
Kirkus Reviews (-) (08/15/18)
School Library Journal (10/01/18)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 10/01/2018 Gr 1–3—Pilar loves to dance, but with auditions on the horizon, the child is racked with worries. She lets out a long breath and reminds herself that she knows all the steps to her favorite ballet. At school, Pilar is full of anxiety. A friend, Sebastian, notices her struggling with her emotions and reminds her to breathe. That night, Pilar begins to feel anxious again and her mother reminds her to breathe, do what she loves, and say positive phrases to herself. Pilar works to keep her worries from hampering her performance and she gets a part in the ballet. The illustrator, working in subdued watercolors, pastels, and pencil, creates a soothing backdrop to the overarching theme of chronic childhood anxiety. Pilar and her classmates are thoughtfully drawn with enough detail and expression that children should be able to identify with her as she goes about her daily routine at home and school. A note from the author on childhood worries and a few selected resources focusing on childhood mental health are appended. The story effectively illustrates Pilar's anxiety and the coping mechanisms she successfully uses to defuse it. VERDICT A solid addition to help young readers develop empathy and resilience. —Mindy Hiatt, Salt Lake County Library Services - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 10/15/2018 In Sanchez's gentle picture book, she introduces Pilar, a sweet ballet dancer who deals with social anxiety. When an opportunity to audition for a Winter Wonderland performance arises, she wants to participate, but she's consumed by self-consciousness and self-doubt about her dancing skills, a feeling only exacerbated by mishaps that occur the day before. She is supported by her good friend Sebastian and her compassionate mother, who understands her feelings, guides her through coping techniques, and encourages her to find her inner strength. Sanchez emphasizes Pilar's efforts to manage her anxiety through strengthening her resilience, as well as prioritizing dance, an expressive outlet that brings her joy. Nervous kids will be able to relate, especially when Pilar describes how she feels after every mishap, and they'll have their confidence bolstered by Pilar's smart coping techniques, such as using positive thinking, talking about her feelings with friends and family, and taking time to do the things she truly loves. An author's note offers more tips for helping children with anxiety, as well as additional resources for parents. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.