Published by Enchanted Lion Books
Summary: Snoozie is a cat who likes to, well, snooze, and Sunny is her playful dog friend. On a walk one day, they discover So-So, a small black dog whose only friend has gone “to the other side of the world”. So-So is extremely timid, but the other two entice her to play with them and invite her to Snoozie’s birthday party the next day. So-So is apprehensive about going, but when Sunny comes to pick her up, she has no choice. The party turns out to be great fun, and So-So gives Snoozie a birthday poem she wrote to celebrate their new friendship. 40 pages; grades K-3.
Pros: Written by Israeli poet Dafna Ben-Zvi, this early chapter book is sure to enchant readers with both the story and the charming illustrations. Despite its brevity, the story doesn’t talk down to kids, and anyone who has experienced social anxiety or been grateful for a new friendship is sure to appreciate it.
Cons: After reading the book, I realized it was originally published in 2016, with the English language version released in December 2020. So it doesn’t meet my usually strict criteria of being published in the current year; I was so charmed by the story, though, that I am making an exception.