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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Seven-year-old Madison is excited to be taking tennis lessons. However, things don’t go quite as she thought they would. After watching tennis on television, she dreamed big about succeeding on the tennis court. At first, she couldn’t even hit the ball. With lots of tears and lots of encouragement from her coach and her family, Madison carried on, tried harder, and finally succeeded in hitting the ball. A girl who wanted to quit didn’t. She had the courage to try harder, to practice, and to perfect her technique, not to mention having a little fun along the way. With the repeated mantra, “I can do anything”, and the inspiration of encouragement from her supportive family, coach, and friends, hard work finally did pay off.
Madison Cooks’ book, A Little Girl’s Dream: I Can Do Anything, is a charming story about empowerment and believing in oneself. The story is told in the first-person narrative from Madison’s point of view, with repetitive phrases like “work hard,” “never give up,” and “dream big” to encourage young readers to help cheer Madison on. The bold and colorful illustrations with so many encouraging exclamations (lots of “wow’s”) make this is a positive story to encourage young readers to dream big and work hard to achieve their dreams. Madison’s dream was tennis, but there are lots of other big dreams to inspire young readers. This is a poignant story with a powerful message – and it’s amazingly written by seven-year-old Madison herself. I think this young tennis player has another big talent: writing!