Worms Are A Yummy Snack

A Story of Patience, Anger, and Joy

Children - Grade K-3rd
34 Pages
Reviewed on 11/11/2020
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Author Biography

Dorsey Spencer Jr. is an educator, author, and owner of See Us Fly LLC, an independent publishing company. A graduate of Temple University (B.S.), the University of Massachusetts Amherst (M.Ed.), and Florida State University (Ph.D.), Dorsey is committed to representation in literature. Dorsey resides in New York with his wife and two children.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite

Worms Are a Yummy Snack by Dorsey Spencer Jr, with illustrations by Ann Pomelova, is a children's picture book that revolves around a father and son outing to go fishing. The book begins with a six-year-old boy named Chase who has saved money he earned from a lemonade stand to purchase his fishing pole and tackle, noting that it is the same age that his father first went fishing with his own dad. As with most children, the excitement leads to a lack of patience with the question every parent is familiar with: “Are we there yet?” On arrival, Chase squirms at the idea of hooking a worm and again grows impatient waiting for a fish to take the bait. When it eventually happens, he loses his temper when the fish gets away, but soon after he does catch his first fish and is able to enjoy the moment and his fresh catch for dinner with the rest of the family.

I really enjoyed Worms Are a Yummy Snack and, even more importantly, my own little reader did too. The father/son bond and time together teach young readers the importance of patience and the disappointment we often feel when things don't work out as we expected. Chase embodies most children of the same age who sometimes struggle with their emotions, and Dorsey Spencer Jr does an excellent job in making him relatable. The illustrations by Ann Pomelova are just exceptional and truly do bring the story to life, matching the narrative to a vivid palette of colors and high-quality artwork. Another bonus is that the father and son duo, as well as the mother and sister waiting at home, are black Americans, delivering the diversity that the short stack of quality children's books does not always have. As a mother to a daughter who is in the minority, this is wonderful to have in our bedtime rotation. Highly recommended.

Jack Magnus

Worms Are A Yummy Snack: A Story of Patience, Anger, and Joy is a concept picture book for children, grades k-3, written by Dorsey Spencer, Jr. and illustrated by Ann Pomelova. Chase is beyond excited; he’s going on his first fishing trip with his dad. He even has his own fishing rod and tackle box which he bought with money earned from his lemonade stand. Finally, it’s very early in the morning, and Chase’s dad wakes him up. The two of them get into the car and begin their trip to the ocean. Once they’ve found the perfect spot, they unpack, and Chase’s dad pulls out the container of worms. He tells Chase that he’ll have to pull out a worm and put it on his hook, but Chase is not at all sure he’s ready to do that. The worms are disgusting and dirty, but he really wants to fish with his dad, and so, with Dad’s help, he gets a squirmy worm on his hook and casts it out into the water. But wait...where are the fish? Fishing really does take a lot of patience and appreciation for the beauty that surrounds the fisherman. Can Chase curb his impatience and anger enough to be a real fisherman like his dad?

Dorsey Spencer, Jr’s Worms Are A Yummy Snack is a marvelous coming of age story for children as Chase participates in a family ritual that means so much to him. We see him grow with each challenge he faces: first, hooking the worm; learning to relax, observe his surroundings and stay calm as he waits for his first fish; and then realizing the need to control his anger and disappointment when that first big fish gets away. Chase’s dad sets such a grand example with his own patience and understanding -- he was once in Chase’s footsteps, after all, and he guides his son beautifully on that first trip. Ann Pomelova’s bright and colorful illustrations work quite well with the text. I especially loved the facial expressions she gives Chase and his father. You can see and feel the tenderness, love, and pride Chase’s dad feels for his son. Worms Are A Yummy Snack: A Story of Patience, Anger, and Joy is highly recommended.

Bruce Arrington

Worms Are A Yummy Snack: A Story of Patience, Anger, and Joy by Dorsey Spencer Jr. is an illustrated children’s story about a boy named Chase, who goes out with his father on his first fishing trip. Chase is more than excited since he’s been raising money on his own to pay for his own fishing equipment. Once on the road, Chase acts like a typical excited kid, and simply cannot wait to get things started. There are a few bumps along the way, but the day turns out successfully and Chase is better for it.

I found the artwork colorful, detailed, and professional. The pictures will definitely appeal to young readers. The story itself is packed with all sorts of life lessons, but not in a preachy way. Rather, they are carefully embedded into each page. This is what the book advertises: “The book positively discusses themes of patience, expression, and management of emotions, resilience, and perseverance,” but I think it goes even beyond these things. Right from the start, we see Chase learning how to finance his trip by setting up his business. Through his thriftiness, he is learning to be self-sufficient, even at an early age. The father shows a lot of patience and love throughout the day, providing the care and support Chase needs to learn so that one day he can be a good father to his children as well. And Chase, being a child who needs to learn about self-control and patience, does take those steps to help him be a better human being. In all, Worms Are A Yummy Snack by Dorsey Spencer Jr. is an outstanding and thoughtful story that will be loved by young and older readers alike. Highly recommended.