- Book Style: Toddler and kids story book to prepare for surgery
- Reading Level: 2 (Reading With Help due to: mid-range length and some difficult vocabulary)
- Reading Length: 5-7 minutes (FYI – we never account for toddler questions)
- Illustration: Realistic, yet fun
- Age Target: 2-12 Years of Age
- Author: David Rosenblum, MD
- Author’s Page: David Rosenblum, MD
- Book Purchase Page: Amazon
- Social Media Links: http://www.mykidssurgery.com/
Welwyn Ardsley and the Cosmic Ninjas – Preparing Your Child and Yourself for Anesthesia and Surgery is a story book that’s good for both toddlers and children. It’s written with the purpose of educating parents and children, as well as lessening the fears and anxiety associated with visits to the hospital. Our story follows Welwyn, who hurts his leg in an accident at home. His mother calls the doctor, who says he can fix the issue but that it will require surgery. From there, we get to see Welwyn go through the entire process of consultation, preparation, anesthesia, and finally the finished product (a repaired leg and a cool cast). In the end, we’re left with Welwyn being happy and ready to tackle life.
As far as I’m concerned, the most important thing about this book is the reason the author created it. We’re not just reading a story for the sake of reading a story, as David Rosenblum (our author, and an actual Medical Doctor) has produced this book for a very specific purpose. It’s been created to educate toddlers and parents about the whole process. It’s been created to help children’s anxiety about the situation, and give parents a forum to discuss worries. In this regard, I can safely state that this book succeeds. It’s truly a great book for parents, toddlers, and young children alike to understand the hospital/surgery/anesthesia process.
Now, all of this talk about surgery and anesthesia could make you think that the story isn’t fun. That’s actually not the case, as the author has put a serious effort towards making the story fun. There’s a specific part of the story (when Welwyn goes under anesthesia), where he battles germs alongside the “cosmic ninjas” (the operating room team). He uses what appears to be an airplane (in space) and also seems to have a finger laser that he blasts the germs with. He kicks, he jumps, and he flips, all in the matter of a few pages before he wakes up feeling better. All in all, it’s a bunch of fun that really does well in breaking up the story.
It’s also important to note just how much fun the illustrations are within what I’m calling the “cosmic ninja” part of the story. You can see an example below, where there are flying spaceships and they’re shooting lasers. This is just an example and it really gets fun when Welwyn jumps out to battle the germs. As I said before, this part of the book really breaks up the story. This rings true when we’re talking about the illustrations, as the style completely changes in this section.
Speaking of the illustrations….
They’re fantastic. I don’t know how David Rosenblum has done it, but he’s produced a relatively realistic cartoon. The characters all look very life-like and very real to me, and as a result the characters show a lot of emotion. I love the raw emotion shown throughout the book and I especially loved it when my toddler told me that Welwyn was upset (see the picture above for what he was talking about). In any case, the illustrations are top notch and I don’t see a way to improve them.
Another thing to discuss in regards to the illustrations is their depth. There’s an incredible amount of detail here that is hard to explain. Suffice it to say that there’s a lot of work done in shading, details, and depth that give the story a leg up on other books I’ve reviewed here. The shading especially adds an element that allows further telling of the story.
Once in a while, I take the time to discuss an author. This book is definitely one of those cases where I feel it’s important for you to know a little bit about David Rosenblum.
I’ve already told you that he’s an actual MD. What I haven’t said is that he’s such an expert in his field (anesthesia and pain management), that he teaches other doctors in a number of ways. I think this lines up perfectly with the point of his book, as he’s just extending himself into another method of teaching. If the guy can teach doctors, the guy can teach children and parents.
What’s more, David is an entrepreneur through and through. He’s the kind of doctor that (I think) you see on TV. He’s created a service called QBazaar.com that helps prepare physicians for specialty board exams. He lectures, and he’s appeared many times on a radio show named Doctor Talk on XM Radio.
Now, having said all this I think my favorite thing about David is the fact that he’s driven to help. He’s driven to help people who don’t understand the field of medicine in general, and that’s the whole reason he’s produced this book. He’s not looking to make a new career in children’s books, but has instead produced this book with a very altruistic reason: to help. I think that’s fantastic, and it’s one of the reasons I reviewed his book.
In the end, this is a fantastic story book with a real purpose. It’s going to provide you, your toddler, or young child with a good understanding of what they’re about to go through (assuming they have a hospital visit soon). For me, I know how much I’d want to help my child understand and to mitigate some of their anxiety. As such, this is a top notch book that I’m going to recommend for any parent that is in (or knows they could be) in this situation. As an added bonus, I think this a great book for introducing children to lots of concepts related to medicine, and will definitely help kids who want to become a doctor. Not only that, but the book only costs $3.11 USD on Kindle and $13.99 USD for a paperback copy. Head over to Amazon now!
Thanks for reading…with your toddlers,