Tad has to swim twice as hard as his brother and sister tadpoles to keep up with them. They urge him on, warning of the evil creature that lurks in the deep, dark parts of the murky pond. They say Big Blub is “as old as the mud” and unmatched in his ferocity. Tad decides he’s not going to believe in him but will roam the waters with caution nonetheless. His siblings begin disappearing rapidly. He wonders where they have gone. Then, one day, he’s the only one left. With time, his little body develops and up, up, up he goes to the surface of the water and beyond, all the way to some nearby lily pads. There he finds an amazing surprise: his family.
This is a precious story about growing up the smallest of the lot, having real and imagined fears, and yearning for togetherness from the depths of loneliness. It’s sure to touch the hearts of those late bloomers out there as well as those who feel alone in the world. It’s just as likely, though, to be adored by young children who see themselves as ordinary, because the tale is filled with life and vibrancy, color and allure. Author and illustrator Benji Davies has a unique and welcoming style. Tad is written at approximately a second grade reading level, although it is perfect for all children aged four to nine.
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