(I received an e-ARC of The Thing Lou Couldn’t Do from the publisher and NetGalley for review consideration.)
When you head to the library or bookstore this weekend with the kiddos, keep an eye out for The Thing Lou Couldn’t Do written and illustrated by Ashley Spires. It comes out today!
I have two little Lou’s in my house right now. And the hardest part of getting them to try a new skill is to convince them it’s okay not to make it on the first time. My eldest will circle it and cry and groan the whole way through and then when she gets it she lights up. My youngest will be introduced to it, refuse to do it for a few minutes or a few weeks, and then at at time she determines, she’ll just up and do it. She has to think it through, plan her strategy, consider her options, and prepare herself mentally; I guess you could say my eldest just tries to do all that at one time. It’s an adventure.
Personal story aside, this book is great. Lou is a great kid, full of energy and adventure and creativity and imagination. Her friends are energetic, compassionate, fun-loving kids. Then they get to a point where they want an adventure climbing trees. They don’t know that Lou can’t climb trees. This obstacle seems to be too much for Lou. She thinks up a million excuses – really good, kid-approved excuses. When she finally tells her friends, they teach and encourage her to try. So she tries and….
She can’t do it.
And that is why I love this book. There is a good ending, but the good ending is not in her climbing a tree the first time she tries.
It is good that she tried.
Her friends decide to play somewhere else and off they all go on another adventure.
Good for her friends. Good for Lou.
Will she eventually learn to climb trees? No doubt. Does she have to do it on her first time and without any mistakes? Nope. The good ending is in the trying. I believe I’ve seen this referred to as encouraging a growth mindset. I’m all in. What a great story, what fun characters and what a good ending.