Editorial Review

Jewish Book World

Cover: Speak Up, Tommy!

“Tommy’s classmates tease him about his quiet voice and his Israeli accent. He doesn’t like reading to the class, and stays by himself at recess. One day, Officer Sweeney and his police dog, Samson, pay a visit to Tommy’s class. Tommy instantly feels comfort­able with Samson, who reminds him of his dog, who had to stay in Israel. When Samson smells something interesting and begins bark­ing, only Tommy can figure out how to quiet him. It turns out that Samson was trained in Israel and only obeys commands in Hebrew. An interesting deal is struck; Tommy will teach Officer Sweeney the Hebrew he needs to give Samson his commands, and Officer Sweeney will help Tommy learn to speak English with more confidence.

Jacqueline Dembar Greene’s heartwarm­ing story shows how friendships begin and Deborah Melmon’s illustrations evoke the stresses and triumphs of a classroom, the joyful chaos of a playground, and the bustle of a city street. Virtually all children will be able to relate to Tommy’s insecurity in some way. This book, based loosely on a true story, provides a non-preachy starting point for a variety of discussions about compassion, toler­ance, and friendship. Highly recommended for ages 4-8.”—Jewish Book World

Products Reviewed

Speak Up, Tommy!
  • Available in limited formats
  • Soon! Spring 2021
  • New! Fall 2020
  • New! Spring 2020

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