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Reviewed by Lesley Jones for Readers' Favorite
In Gaspar the Flatulating Ghost by Teresa Burrell, a little ghost called Gaspar lives alone in an empty house in California. All the other ghosts in the neighborhood are mean to him because Gaspar suffers from terrible and stinky gas when he eats his favorite food; ice cream. They do not understand that Gaspar is lactose intolerant and call him mean names like 'Smelly' and 'Putrid'. One day a new family moves into the house. Gaspar believes that his lonely days are over, and the Stone family will become his new friends. As much as he tries to get their attention, they cannot see him. Gaspar is so sad he turns to his one love; icecream. Then he realizes that not everyone is mean, there are some people that are happy to be his friend and accept him just the way he is.
Gaspar the Flatulating Ghost by Teresa Burrell is such a delightful children's book that tackles the little-known topic of lactose intolerance in a way children will understand. Little Gaspar is a wonderful character, he is so kind and gentle. The illustrations complement the book so well and really bring out the character's personality, as well as giving opportunities for adults to discuss the story further. The subject matter of the book would be a great conversation starter in schools or between parents and children regarding bullying or teasing anyone who is different from themselves. Hayden was non-judgemental and patient with Gaspar and his condition, while others teased or ignored him. This is a powerful message from which children could learn a great deal.