Rissy No Kissies
Rissy is a baby lovebird, although she’s not like the other ones she knows who love others’ kisses. When Miss Bluebird tries to kiss Rissy on the cheek, she empathically chirrups, “NO KISSIES!” Her siblings welcome them when they snuggle up to sleep, but when Rissy’s daddy reaches down to give her one, she crosses her wings and squeaks, “NO KISSIES!” When she refuses them from Grandma Lovebird and her friends, they’re offended and think she’s mean. She wonders if something’s wrong, if she’s really all the things others say. Mama assures her there are many ways to share affection, and the choice is for her to make.
This is a sweet story about accepting others’ preferences. It’s also about respecting personal space. The author thoughtfully provides notations for children and parents, elucidating the importance of setting and enforcing appropriate boundaries. She encourages youth to use their voices to say “no” when feeling threatened and suggests parents offer choices of affection like a high five or a hug.
The illustrations are precious, and the rhyme and repetition create a gentle, predictable tone. The vibrant shades of the rainbow-colored hues and carefully sketched images bring the characters to life and add an endearing quality to this noteworthy picture book.
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