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Reviewed by Deborah Lloyd for Readers' Favorite
M.C. Plays Hide and Seek: An Empowering Story for Healthy Children Who Care About a Person Living with Cancer, written by Eva Grayzel, is a gift for parents who are facing the dilemma of how to talk to children about cancer. This book presents a realistic portrayal of cancer, without being scary. This knowledge is imparted through hide-and-seek scenarios: physicians of various specialties finding M.C. in various parts of the body; how cancer cannot be passed from person to person through coughing, sneezing, etc.; emotions the child may have. The most important line of the book may be this: If you have a question, ask. The entire book, and this instruction, provides a platform for essential discussions, addressing any fears a child may have.
The illustration of M.C. is brilliant; it is not frightening, but it likes to hide, describing one of the most insidious aspects of cancer. This aspect accurately depicts how cancer is often not found until it has grown bigger. The book is written for children, ages 5 – 10 years. When a family is faced with a cancer diagnosis of a family member, this book is a great starting place for discussions with young children. There are many opportunities for a parent to take the information and add the “story” of how cancer was found and what treatments are taking place. Then, an exploration of the child’s emotional reactions is key during this difficult time. Author Eva Grayzel, a mother of young children when she experienced cancer, has crafted a special children’s book in M.C. Plays Hide and Seek. A must for young children facing these difficult situations.