Mine. Yours. by Marsha Diane Arnold & Qin Leng (Illustrations)

Publication Date: April 2, 2019 by Kids Can Press

I was fortunate to be able to read a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

I’m not sure whether I like this book or not. I'm pretty sure I don't understand it. I suspect that I am either to old, or to young for it. i

Little Panda seems to be looking for a place to stay and enters into Big Panda’s den. Then grumpy Big Panda claims the den as Mine! and sets Little Panda outside with the word, Yours! This territorial squabbling continues until Big Panda gives Little Panda a kite and sends him on his way.

As Little Panda attempts to fly his kite he interrupts many different Asian animals by messing up whatever it is they are doing. He is roundly sent on his way with more assertions of Mine! and Yours! 

Eventually the kite takes off with Little Panda. All the animals jump onto the string with him. I’m uncertain if they are all joining into the fun or trying to rescue him. In the end they travel back to Big Panda and all learn the word, Ours.

From other reviews I’ve read it is the perfect book for young children who, like the two pandas and other animals here, are always squabbling over things. I don’t remember those days with my own children (thank goodness) and my grandchildren haven’t reached this age yet. I’m sure those other readers are correct, but for now it makes no sense to me. I just don't get the point of this. Well I do, I think the author is trying to send a message about sharing, but I’m not sure the book accomplishes it.

My problem is in large part that I really didn’t like Big Panda. Older characters should be modelling good behaviour, not acting like jerks. How could he offer the tiniest portion of bamboo to Little Panda while hoarding a huge basket for himself? This is not how responsible adults act!

 Of course I love the art. Qin Leng’s whimsical drawings always make my heart sing. I adore this one here with Little Panda and his kite. I’m not certain that this is enough for me though.

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