Book Reviews

Review: A Book of Feelings by Amanda McCardie & Salvatore Rubbino


I was sent a free copy of this children’s book by publisher Walker Books.  It’s a paperback book for young children, here is my review.

Brother and sister Sam and Kate are normal children who sometimes feel happy, sad, angry or nervous. There are many different things they may feel, and maybe they are feelings that you feel too?

This paperback is a clever book which focuses on the different feelings and emotions children can get and how those emotions make them feel (incredible sadness = unbearable pain). There is a basic story which stars by showing Sam, Kate, their parents and their dog Fuzzy Bean living in a happy home, and they feel happy because they are loved, but then the story turns to explain how the siblings don’t always feel happy, sometimes they are angry at each other, nervous about reading aloud, upset when being bullied, etc. Though the story is very simple and not really an inventive one, this book focusses on the feelings, highlighting them in bold within the short pieces of text.


The book doesn’t have too much writing and there are some lovely images throughout on thick and glossy paper. The images look like watercolours with added lines drawn to make the pictures more defined. I do like the pictures, as simple as they are they do depict the emotions that the kids and even others feel well. The back of the book has an index of the different emotions. Once the book has been read from cover to cover adults can turn to certain feelings to encourage children to talk about the focused feeling. The entire book is structured in the hopes of encouraging kids to talk about their emotions and I think it’s a clever way to do this. If adults see their child feeling sad all the time, getting them to read again about the sad emotions and how they feel for Sam and Kate might encourage kids to talk about how they really feel.


I really like this book, mainly because it’s the sort of book that would have helped me speak up about how I felt when I was facing a lot of bad emotions as a child. The book focusses not on the emotion but it’s effects on someone and it’s cause, and although it may not work with all children I think this book is a great opportunity to connect with some of those children who don’t easily speak up about their feelings or for adults who find it hard to speak to their kids about this too.

Rating: 5/5

Review published on Goodreads, click here

Book Description

A Book of Feelings stars a brother and sister, Sam and Kate, and their dog, Fuzzy Bean. Sam and Kate know what makes them happy: cuddling Mum, reading a story with Dad, swimming, running and dancing . lots of things! But they don’t feel happy all the time, and in the course of the book we see them feeling grumpy, embarrassed, shy, nervous, frightened, sad and jealous. This book shows the children in many different situations at home and at school, and show how they change over time, how emotions can escalate and how people can help each other. Amanda McCardie’s supremely subtle and sensitive text is as alive to the nuances of children’s behaviour as Salvatore Rubbino’s amazing pictures.


2 thoughts on “Review: A Book of Feelings by Amanda McCardie & Salvatore Rubbino

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