A Way with Wild Things
A Way with Wild Things

A Way with Wild Things

Written by Larissa Theule & illustrated by Sara Palacios
3 - 6
Reading age
Page count
Mar 3, 2020
Publication date

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What Does Bookroo Think of This Book

Bright illustrations and a lovely story beautifully meld to epitomize coping mechanisms for quiet children and highlight the worth of each individual..

This story begins with Poppy surrounded by nature—which includes, fittingly, a lot of poppies—enjoying her bug friends and appreciating the beauty surrounding her in “the cicadas’ newest symphony” and “ the spider mama’s weaving.” Poppy loves to talk with the ladybugs, but when she’s surrounded by people, it’s a different story—she’ll camouflage into her surroundings like a chameleon to avoid small talk and attention. At Grandma Phyllis’s hundredth birthday celebration, her Uncle Dan draws all attention to her as he calls her a wallflower, but as a dragonfly lands in her hand and with loving reassurance from her grandmother, Poppy realizes she’s “No, not a wallflower . . . A wildflower.” Theule’s lovely and poetic story emphasizes that having different interests, personalities, or ways of excelling doesn’t detract from your worth. Though Poppy is a little shy, she gains comfort from her dragonfly friend and remembers to relax, breath, and speak clearly, and Palacios’ brilliant illustrations further emphasize Poppy’s coping methods as the crowd of people turns to an array of beautiful flowers. The illustrations include notable texture, floral detailing, and commendable camouflaging of Poppy into a variety of surroundings. This beautiful book is a remarkable reminder of acceptance and appreciation, and—like Poppy sitting in nature—finding beauty in diversity.

What Kind of Book is A Way with Wild Things


natureshynessbugs and insectsself-esteemsocial themesself-esteem and self-reliancescience and naturefeelings and emotionsfamilymultigenerational


Where Does This Book Stand Out

  • Everyday Core Feeling

    The “Everyday Core Feeling” badge is awarded to exceptional books addressing common but powerful feelings.

What Questions Should I Ask My Child

  • Poppy felt a little shy and nervous when everyone looked at her at the party. Have you ever felt shy or nervous like Poppy? What things help you feel comfortable and confident, like how the dragonfly helped Poppy relax and speak clearly?
  • Poppy's personality includes loving nature and bugs, but staying out of the limelight at events. What is your personality like? If you like the limelight, why do you think it's good to understand how Poppy feels about it?


Book Lists That Include This Book

The Creatives Behind the Book

Trivia to Know About This Book

What Has Larissa Theule Said About This Book

Nothing yet! Let Larissa Theule know that you want to hear from them about their book.

What Has Sara Palacios Said About This Book

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Book Details

Publication Date
March 3, 2020
Bloomsbury Children's Books
Text Details
Typeset in Sassoon Sans Std.
Illustration Details
Sara Palacios created the artwork for this book in layers, with cut paper, acrylic paints, and Photoshop.
Page Count
Reading Age
3 - 6 years
Lib. of Congress (LCCN)

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Core Score - 85%

So, SO close to perfection!

Depth Score - 46%

Just the barebones.

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