Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Teeny Tiny Toady

Teeny Tiny Toady

Jill Esbaum
Illustrator:  Keika Yamaguchi 
Picture Book
For ages 4 to 6
Sterling Children's Books, 2016   ISBN: 978-1454914549

One day Teeny is down at the pond with her mother when a human picks up her parent and put her in a bucket. What a catastrophe! Teeny hops home as fast as she can and she tells her big brothers what has happened. En masse the burly toad brothers rush out, with their little sister following behind. If only she were “a bigger, stronger, / hero kind of toad,” who could save her mother.

The brothers try pushing the bucket over. To no avail. It is just too heavy. They try to build a toad pyramid, but that does not work either. Teeny then suggests that they build a ladder. One of the brother’s hears this recommendation and he loudly tells his siblings “a LADDER’S what we need!” No one realizes that the suggestion came from Teeny.

A ladder is built and then up the brothers go. Teeny mentions that they might “need some kind of rope,” but the brothers ignore her. Instead of using a rope to pull their mother out, they reach in to try to pull her out…and they all fall in.

Teeny is now the only toad in her family who is not trapped in the bucket. She is the only one left who can rescue them. She thinks that she is too little to be a hero, all on her own. She cries because she feels so small and helpless.

When you are littler than everyone else, and perhaps ignored a good bit of the time, it is easy to start thinking that you are too little to achieve anything, especially in times of trouble. The truth of the matter is that there are lots of instances when one’s size has nothing to do with ones innate ability to solve problems.

In this charming picture book we see how one little toad finds out for herself what she is capable of.