Teddy’s Favorite Toy by Christian Trimmer has one of my favorite things about a book: It did not get preachy over the fact that Teddy’s favorite toy is a doll (which is a cross between the Rugrat doll and Barbie). Nobody teases him. Nobody mentioned he is a boy. The story is: Teddy’s favorite toy is tossed out and how a real superhero finds it. Teddy has toys that are more traditionally considered “boy” toys and he has this traditionally considered “girl” toy. He has toys that anyone could have. There is no mention of “boy” or “girl” toys. It is just a story about a favorite one.
However, the fact that Teddy did not take care of his toy and yet, is still able to keep his favorite toy, was a little off-putting for me. I would have liked to have seen a lesson in loving our toys but also taking care of them.
The authors afterwards that this story is based on his own Lynda Carter Wonder Woman toy is a nice touch. I am assuming that the illustrator, Madeline Valentine, had to make it a more traditionally looking “girly” doll as Wonder Woman is copyrighted and not because they are driving home the point a “boy” has a “girl” toy/doll.
Valentine’s illustrations are the perfect touch to this story. They keep the story light (just a kid playing with his toys) and have the details needed to show you that there are real superheroes too (Mom to the rescue of one special toy when it has its adventure to the trash). The adult will more likely notice how the “everyday” of mom turns “superhero” as she jumps and has a not-so-cape flying behind her.