Lois Brandt is a children’s fiction writer whose new book Maddi’s Fridge, is the first picture book to address child hunger in the United States. It was inspired by Brandt’s childhood memory of opening her friend’s refrigerator and finding only condiments and a lunch milk carton her friend had saved from school for her little brother. Brandt, who holds an MFA from Northwest Institute of Literary Arts, served as a Peace Corps volunteer in West Africa.
Age Range: 4-8 years
Grade Level: Kindergarten – 3rd
Sofia and Maddi live in the same neighborhood, play in the same park, and go to the same school. But while Sofia’s fridge at home is full, Maddi’s fridge is empty – white empty – with just a small container of milk.
“Why doesn’t your mom go to the store?” Sofia asks.
“We don’t have enough money.”
“But what if you get hungry?”
“We have some bread,” Maddi says.
“Please don’t tell anyone.”
Sofia promises Maddi she won’t tell, but is determined to help her best friend. She sneaks food for Maddi in her bag and discovers that, while fish and eggs are good for kids, they aren’t very good for backpacks. Despite Sofia’s very best efforts, Maddi’s fridge is still empty.
Sofia promised not to tell. Now what can she do?
** 10% of profits donated to help fight childhood hunger.
My Thoughts: Hunger, especially child hunger is a big problem here in the United States and all around the world. Many of us don’t give it a second thought when we enjoy our meals every day. However, I love that this children’s book is bringing attention to it and teaching other children about child hunger in a way that they can understand.
The illustrations in this book are by Vin Vogel and I just love them! They are cute and really add pizzazz to the story. I love that this is a hardcover book that is a nice size. At the back of the book on the last page it tells you and kids how you can help friends who have empty refrigerators. I love that it teaches kids to be observant and when they spot another child who may be hungry how they can help (gives you options).
Here is a fact: One out of every five kids in the United States is at risk of having an empty fridge like the character in the book, Maddi. Wow, that is one startling statistic for sure!
I love that this book talks to kids (and adults) too about a very important issue and they do it in a fun & entertaining way. I give it a big 2 thumbs up and I am glad that we have it for Gia’s library book collection.
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