Making Forever Friends

Children - Picture Book
44 Pages
Reviewed on 05/29/2022
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

Chase is a lively dog who wants to make friends with everyone, including all the animals on Forever Dreaming Farm where he lives. His siblings, Bella and Marley, aren’t quite so adventurous, but Chase encourages them to follow along and soon they’re friends with the chickens, the horses, and even the pigs. Even though they all look different and have different types and numbers of feet, they can find lots of things to do together and they have fun. From chasing crickets with the hens, to playing in the mud with the pigs, life is never dull on the farm when you have so many different animal friends to play with.

Melissa Johnson’s picture book story, Making Forever Friends, is a charming story about animals on the farm. But it’s more than that, too. With a fun-filled plot and an adorable lively dog, Chase, as the main character, there’s lots to learn about life on the farm. The author uses this sweet story, told in rhyming verse to add to its lyrical charm, to teach young readers about the importance of friendship and acceptance and not judging others by how they look. Chase becomes a great teacher as he ventures around the farm making friends. Like Chase says: “Yeah, we know none of us look alike; it only matters what’s inside!”

Told in simple language so young readers can easily follow along and accompanied by bold, colorful illustrations, there is more to learn than friendship and tolerance. There’s even some simple math when Chase meets the chickens and they compare the number of feet they have: simple counting and solving a simple math problem of how many more feet the dogs have than the chickens. There are also interesting details about each animal, so the young reader can learn about farm animals. And, best of all, at the end of the book is a photo collection of all the animals at the real Forever Dreaming Farm. Love it!

Vincent Dublado

Making Forever Friends by Melissa Johnson is a charming story of friendship that everyone will enjoy. Chase is a spirited farm dog who loves fun and adventures. One day, he realizes that there are still so many things at the farm that he has not yet explored. There are still many farm animals he wants to get to know, so he invites his brother Marley and his sister Bella to go out and make friends on the farm. At first, Marley doesn’t see any point in the exercise and Bella is just plain scared. But Chase assures them that making friends is fun. But the hens brushed them off because they don’t have feathers. The horses declined because they don’t neigh and have no hooves. The pigs refuse because the dogs don’t have curly tails and snouts. Will these physical differences discourage Chase and his siblings from making friends with other animals, or will it even be more fun to hang out with those that are different from them?

Most young children love making friends, and Melissa Johnson perfectly captures that spirit in Making Forever Friends. The fact that this story is based on the real farm dogs of Forever Dreaming Farm makes this story even more awesome and worth telling. Johnson’s passion for telling the story of her four-legged friends is strongly reflected on every page. The type of attachment that the dogs demonstrate in their new friendships is indicative of the type of relationship that does not discriminate. It is a story that shows the joy of diversity, and that being different is perfectly fine. Lorraine Dey’s artwork is solid and so alive that you are drawn to it, much like the way you can’t take your eyes off the painting Dogs Playing Poker by Cassius Marcellus Coolidge. It’s a sweet story, a tale of animal friendship that everyone can learn something from, and in the end, it will further strengthen your bond with your own animal friends.

Pikasho Deka

Making Forever Friends is a short picture book for children written by Melissa Johnson and illustrated by Lorraine Dey. Chase, a brown-spotted dog, is blessed with an adventurous spirit. One day, he invites his brother and sister, Marley and Bella, to go out and make friends on the farm. The three of them venture out together and stop by the chicken coop. They ask the chickens if they want to be friends. Initially hesitant at first, because of their lack of feathers and more legs on the dogs, the chickens soon embrace the dogs, and together they hop after crickets and chase butterflies. Realizing that what's inside is more important than outside, the new friends soon add the horses and the pigs to their little group and have a fun-filled playful day.

Making Friends Forever is a delightful adventure story that teaches kids the importance of not judging people by their looks and encourages them to embrace each other's differences. Drawing inspiration from the real-life dogs of "Forever Dreaming Farm," author Melissa Johnson creates some vibrant characters and makes them thoroughly entertaining to read. The illustrations by Lorraine Dey breathe life into the characters, making the story all the more immersive and interactive for children. Chase, Marley, and Bella are fun-loving siblings who discover new friends once they venture out of their comfort zone and interact with the other animals. Making Friends Forever showcases the benefits of seeing other people's way of doing things with an open mind and embracing diversity. Recommend to kids up to 2nd grade.

Philip Van Heusen

If we spend our time concentrating on our differences, we will never be friends. Melissa Johnson shows how to develop friendships in Making Forever Friends. It’s not the outside that matters because we have much in common on the inside. Help your children understand that friendship is worth the effort to maximize what you have in common and minimize your differences. Three dogs that live at the Forever Dreaming Farm decide they want some new friends. They start exploring the farm and learn that even though the other animals are different in many ways, they all have a common desire to have fun. By building on this common ground, the group of different animals becomes good friends. Join the trio in their adventure into friendship.

If one desires friendship, there are several steps to take. First, you have to decide whether you want to make new friends. Then you must be willing to take the chance that your friendly overtures may be rejected. When approaching a new friend, remember to show yourself as being sociable. It is only natural for you and others to notice differences. This is not wrong, but it should never be a barrier to friendship. Instead, look past the differences and see what you have in common. Making Forever Friends by Melissa Johnson illustrates these principles. Because your children will experience times when they need to make new friends, it is important to read this book with your children to explain how to make friends in different situations. This book can help you be a proactive parent by aiding you in teaching one of the preeminent life skills.

Lamonte Leftridge

Very cute. Great for kids. Read to them, parents. It is amazing and remembered.