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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Ozzy Ox is in a bad mood and he takes it out on Finn the cat, who shrieks and causes all kinds of mayhem as things start going from bad to worse. Callen Kropp’s book, Ozzy Ox Moody Morning, touches on the topic of bad moods, something we all experience at one time or another. Following a young ox and his animal friends, the story unfolds with one little snap that has a domino effect and spirals out of control. Ozzy Ox’s temper and Finn’s shriek lead to a curious cow crashing through the Ox House’s window, startling the horses who plow through the front door. The door flies off its hinges and causes its own chain of disastrous events. Young readers will certainly relate to the bad mood scenario as they chuckle along with this story.
Callen Kropp’s picture book, Ozzy Ox: Moody Morning, is a clever way to teach young readers responsibility and what can so easily happen if a bad temper takes over. Told in a lyrical rhyming verse with fun-filled illustrations, the plot develops in an almost unbelievable chain of events from a simple tantrum to a screech to the destruction of property to all manner of disastrous situations. As Ozzy Ox watches the morning unfold, he realizes how devastating a simple tantrum can be and he’s full of remorse. However, his animal friends rallied together and their collaborative efforts put everything right again. Ozzy Ox learns an important lesson about friendship, kindness, and caring for others. We all make poor choices, but everything that is broken can be fixed again, even friendships. This is a great story to encourage young people to be accepting of others and ready to forgive and, most importantly, to make better choices so disastrous events like those caused by Ozzy Ox’s temper tantrum don’t happen again.