by Zachariah OHora
Dial Books, 2015. Picture book.
Two city squirrels eagerly await their cousin Momo’s arrival, bragging to their friends that he is a flying squirrel. But when he finally comes, he’s not what they expected. He’s too shy to fly, he dresses up as Muffin Man when playing superheroes, he eats the acorns when playing Acorn Pong, and he doesn’t even know how to play hide and seek. The cousins express their disgust but realize they’ve gone too far when Momo tearfully packs his bags. They beg him to stay and decide to try things Momo’s way, leading to all kinds of new discoveries and fun. They even dress up as dessert superheroes: “Pastry Power!”
OHora’s retro art and furry squirrels are adorable. Readers will feel compassion for Momo as the odd one out, and get some food for thought as the cousins experiment with celebrating differences. Great lessons for both sides wrapped up in a sweet, funny package.