Full disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book to read and review for my blog. All opinions are my own. This post contains Amazon affiliate links.
Giveaway details will be given at the bottom of this post!
As soon as I finished reading this book with my children, I sent Elizabeth Gerlach an email which contained only 1 sentence:
“This might just be one of the most beautiful books I have ever read.”
Description from Amazon:
Awarded 5-stars from both Reader’s Favorite and the award-winning “Read With Your Kids” podcast, as well as a Certified Great Read.
Meet young Benjamin who takes us on an inspiring & fun adventure to the beach in this first book in the Ben’s Adventures series. You’ll smile and be inspired as you follow Ben into his imagination and he shows us that all kids can play and dream.
In his first adventure, Ben imagines a perfect beach day where he builds sand castles, flies kites, plays with crabs and enjoys special moments with his family. Ben loves the sun on his face and the wind in his hair. He can dream, he can play, and he can interact and have meaningful experiences. Ben smiles, and you will too.
“Let’s build a sandcastle”, I say to my friend.
He says, “Sounds good.”
And we make our plan.
With one tower built,and two more to go.
I kick and laugh and then think “Oh No!”
A Great Book for Introducing Special Needs or Disability to Young Children Ben’s Adventures provides a simple and subtle way to introduce special needs and disability to your child. It can easily open the discussion for what disability means. Why does someone need a wheelchair? If someone’s in a wheelchair, can they still play with me? It will help young minds recognize and understand differences among us and ACCEPT those differences. And the main character Benjamin will reinforce the important take-away that just because someone might be different or need assistance, he/she is still a kid, can be a friend, and can enjoy kids’ play.
Teach Empathy, Inclusion and Acceptance from an Early Age Kids will have as many (if not more) similarities than they have noticeable differences.It’s our job as parents to talk about these issues with our kids. Understanding and accepting others throughout our lives is learned in childhood.
Ben is a young triplet brother that shows all kids can play & dream. Ben’s Adventures was inspired by the author’s son Benjamin who had cerebral palsy. Despite Ben’s challenges in life, he smiled everyday. It’s a wonderful message that is important for typical families AND those with special needs. And it provides a good introduction of disability for any family. In writing it, Gerlach wanted to show that all kids are capable and able to do great (or even simple) things.
I absolutely, positively love this book. So much.
The story itself is beautiful, the pictures are adorable, and the discussion that it created between my 7 year old daughter and I after we finished reading was amazing. We discussed differences in people and even though someone might not always be able to communicate in the same way that you do…they still have feelings, thoughts, and dreams. It was an amazing and inspiring discussion and this book was a perfect catalyst to discuss such an important topic.
It would also be a wonderful book for a classroom! The discussions and writing assignments that could follow would be endless. If you have any teachers in your life, their classroom would greatly benefit from this book.
I love, love, love this special book. In fact, it’s one of my favorite books that I’ve ever reviewed on my blog.
A Conversation with Elizabeth Gerlach, in Her Own Words:
Briefly give a description of your book:
Ben’s Adventures is about a young triplet brother who has cerebral palsy. He loves his family/friends, creating memories and taking adventures! He’s in a wheelchair but shows that ALL kids can play & dream and create meaningful connections and memories.
In this first book, Ben takes us to the beach where he plays with crabs, builds sandcastles and flies with kites.
How did you create the idea for your book?
It’s inspired by my triplet son Benjamin. Ben passed away from a serious illness in 2016 at almost 4 years old. Despite his/our challenges, he always had a smile on his face and laughed quite a bit. As a family, we loved to have different experiences and adventures and just spend time together. I wanted to show that even though a child might have additional needs, it doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy ‘kid things’ and have fun. And I wanted to represent disability in a children’s book by creating a main character who uses a wheelchair.
What audience would be most interested in your book?
Ben’s Adventures is probably most suited for Preschool through second grade. It’s a good message for any child/family (not just one with additional needs). I’ve been told it helps to introduce the concept of disability with kids that aren’t yet familiar. Families have been able to have meaningful conversations around the book.
Where can your book be purchased?
Signed/Dedicated copies are available on my website here:
But it’s also available on Amazon in both Hard Cover and Kindle format.
Use 3 adjectives to describe your book:
Any additional information that you would like to provide about you or your book:
Ben’s Adventures just received a 5-star review from Readers’ Favorite and has average 5 star review on Amazon.
As a family, to honor Benjamin, we established the Ben Smiles Memorial Foundation to purchase switch-adapted toys and other devices to kids with motor challenges.
To be entered, please complete these 2 simple steps:
1. Follow and/or subscribe to my blog
2. Leave a comment below telling the first name of the person you would have the author write the dedication inside the cover to if you are chosen to win a copy
**You must complete both of these steps to be eligible for the giveaway and you must complete them here on my blog (not on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)**
Giveaway will end Friday morning at 6:00 CDT and the winner will be randomly chosen and announced in Friday morning’s blog post.
Make sure you check back on Friday to see if you’ve won (you will have 48 hours from the time I post the winner to email me your mailing address. If I don’t hear from you within 48 hours, I will pick a new winner).
If you already follow and/or subscribe to my blog, you are still eligible…just leave a comment below to be entered 🙂
Good luck! Can’t wait to read your comments!