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Book Review: Big Mo by Megan Padalecki

Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham is a memorable children’s classic that rhythmically and artistically conveyed the message of having an open mind to give something a chance before dismissing it as that which you dislike. Maurice Sendak’s Where The Wild Things Are is a colorful and imaginative treasure that teaches us to stand up to the beasts and to find the courage within us to rule over our destiny (yet still find a way home). These books are but two examples of children’s books that have thrilled readers of all ages with their visual and thoughtful approach to some of life’s lessons.

The world of children’s books welcomed a talented newcomer to its ranks last year when Megan Padalecki released her debut book Big Mo.

Big Mo is the enchanting story of a pet iguana unable to curb his insatiable appetite. Soon Big Mo’s own home isn’t enough to contain him and he proceeds along a journey consuming as much as he can.

Arguably, Big Mo represents the gluttony within all of us. This gluttony is something that we must control if we are to protect and preserve the beauty of Earth’s natural resources.

Padalecki is to be applauded for tackling a weighty issue such as conservation in a delightful fashion. Big Mo isn’t an antagonist for children to fear and adults to abhor; rather, he is a reflection of all of us who may discard the splendor of the Earth we inherited to feed our own self-interests.

In addition, Padalecki’s literary interpretation is well-served by having her in the dual role of both author and illustrator. After all, Big Mo is her brainchild. Her words and illustrations leap off the page and directly into our hearts. These images are exquisite. The visual depth is flawless, a feast for the reader’s eye. Padalecki’s talent as an illustrator most likely was honed by the years she spent as an architect.

Megan Padalecki is a children’s book author to watch. If Big Mo is any indication of the creative wonder for which Padalecki is capable, there is no doubt that her subsequent works will be equally as stunning.

I know that my appetite has been awakened. I look forward to devouring more books by this very gifted author.

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