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Reviewed by Jon Michael Miller for Readers' Favorite
Daddy’s Time Out by Rachel Nee Hall is a children's book for pre-school or early grade-aged readers and is aimed at the special audience of those whose parents may be serving time. It is designed to help with the effects on children who are separated from a parent: one out of twelve kids are in (or have been) in this situation. Author Hall, who has vast experience in the entertainment industry, creates a family of bunny rabbits in which the daddy has to have a “time out” for taking carrots from a farmer’s field without asking. The kid bunny misses playing catch with his dad and doesn’t understand what is happening. The mummy bunny tries to explain to the youngster that they are not to blame and are not unloved by daddy.
I so admire Rachel Nee Hall for working on this problem. I have not seen it addressed in children’s books before, and I agree with the author about the importance of the issue. It’s easy to understand that such kids may develop serious problems themselves. The book is wonderfully illustrated, and the pictures are on separate pages from the text. The writing sets up a scene and the next page demonstrates it, and bunnies are a good choice because, well, who doesn’t love a bunny? The author directly addresses the child reader by asking what their favorite things are and such, a technique that involves the child and promotes interaction. Even better, Ms. Nee Hall provides effective instructions for interacting with the child that will help with the child’s understanding. Separation from a parent must be traumatic for a child, and Daddy’s Time Out (the first of a predicted trilogy) by Rachel Nee Hall will provide vital understanding and succor for a youngster in this unfortunate circumstance through no fault of their own.