Books

Maia and the Very Tall Wall 

Maia is a curious girl, with lots of questions that she asks anyone who will listen. Behind Maia’s house is a peculiar stone wall. As Maia grows older, she notices that the wall grows too. While the wall gets higher and higher, Maia grows shyer and shyer. Before long, she is afraid to ask her questions out loud, and the thing she wants to know the most is, “What’s on the other side of that wall?” Maia tries all kinds of ways to get to the top, but none of them seem to work. Finally, she summons the courage to speak up, and a most surprising thing happens—she gets an answer! By using her voice, and with help from others, Maia gets to the top of the wall, and a whole new world opens up!

 

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Max's Box 

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Max’s parents give him a very special gift: a tiny, magical box that will hold everything, from his toys to his feelings. Max learns, however, that feelings can’t be put away as easily as toys. Each negative emotion he feels—anger, embarrassment, sadness, loneliness—gets added to the box, which grows and grows. Eventually, it is so large that it keeps him from doing what he loves, like riding his bike and climbing trees. With some help from his friends and family, Max is able to turn the box into something beautiful and let it go.  This simple but powerful story not only teaches children how to “control” their emotions but discourages suppressing them, the illustrations becoming more colorful and vibrant as Max moves out from his box’s shadow.

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Unraveling Rose: 2017 GOLD Winner, "Picture Books, Early Reader", Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards

Rose is a stuffed bunny who loves the little boy she lives with and all the fun they have together. They play in the park, paint pictures, and read stories. Everything is perfect until she discovers a loose thread dangling from her arm. Rose tries to ignore the little string, but it is no use. No matter how hard she tries, Rose can’t stop pulling at it. Before long, the thread is all she can think about. Slowly, her arm unravels, its stuffing falls out, and Rose can no longer do the things she loves doing. Can Rose find a way to forget about the little loose thread? The story offers a great way for parents and teachers to talk to children about what happens when impulsive and obsessive thoughts get in the way of enjoying everyday life, and what to do about it.

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 © Brian Wray 2018