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Reviewed by Lexie Fox for Readers' Favorite
Jacky & Raff and the Language of YES is a children’s picture book written by Viki de Lieme and illustrated by Maria Burobkina. After falling out with his family by yelling at his mother, Jacky the jackal runs away only to meet an easy-going giraffe named Raff who helps him understand the effect that words can have. This is a wonderful way of introducing young children to the basics of mindfulness. By using a young jackal whose feelings and experiences will be very familiar to young readers, the author creates an accessible point of entry for the story and its important lessons.
Raff is a delightfully presented dispenser of wisdom for young Jacky, and the discussion of phrasing things as a yes in order to understand and express what you really want is a great idea for childhood development. One of the biggest barriers in the parent and child relationship is being able to express what you really want in a way that the other understands. With Viki de Lieme’s concept of the language of yes, we find a great prompt for both parent and child to stop and think about what they want and how to articulate it. In addition to being a useful tool in supporting your child’s emotional development, Jacky & Raff and the Language of Yes is a gorgeous book to read together, thanks to the beautiful artwork of Maria Burobkina which emphasizes the delightful whimsy of the story. An accessible moral to an engaging story about two friends and the way we articulate ourselves to others, I recommend this book to all parents looking for a great bedtime read.