Pearl Power and the Toy Problem
by Mel Elliott
Pearl Power is back and this time, she and her new bestie, Sebastian, take on the marketing forces which target toys to children according to their gender. Provoked by newcomer, Jerome, who tells Pearl she can't play with his dinosaur because, "THIS is a dinosaur, YOU are a girl!", the children decide to challenge the advertising industry who spread those pernicious messages about boys' toys and girls' toys in the first place. And so, they pen a letter to the "TV Boss" in their very neatest handwriting, prompting a surprising and welcome reply. 'I enjoyed reading this book that clearly shows that girls are the same as boys. Many people don't realise that there is no written rules to say that girls can't play with boys' toys and boys can't play with girls' toys' (Nicole, aged 11, LL reviewer). A clear, uncompromising message in a good, strong, rhyming story. 'Would lead to a lot of discussion and talking' (Deborah, Ed. Lecturer, LL review). And if the gendered marketing of toys or books raises your hackles, get yourself over to the brilliant, joy-filled, campaigning group, Let Toys be Toys (http://lettoysbetoys.org.uk/) Age 4-7, Paperback 34pp
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