Review Detail

Kids Fiction 305
light-hearted fantasy middle grade read
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
STUFFED follows Clark and Foon. Clark is a boy who loves stuffed animals and feels that they keep him safe. However, his mother is pushing him to move away from them and find more "manly" hobbies like baseball. He is also bullied at school, and this centers around his stuffed animals, but really seems to be about power plays (as most bullying is).

Clark's dad receives a box of things from his childhood, which begins his mood spiral into a depression (not specifically defined as such but hinted at strongly). At the same time, Clark feels like he can see a cloudy shape around his father which may be a monster. This is later confirmed by a new friend, who explains the powers of Stuffies and how they can be scored to build up a real army.

Clark becomes more entrenched in this idea and how stuffed animals can help protect his father. The overall story is split every so often with scenes from the perspective of Foon, a stuffed animal that we really meet later. The book also contains some how-to instructions for making simple stuffies in places.

What I loved: This book is really innovative in how it empowers children to be who they are (even if they are a boy who is growing up and loving stuffed animals). The story is quite clever too, in terms of what stuffed animals do and how they fight monsters.

What left me wanting more: I felt like this book could have been something much bigger and deeper than it was. Essentially, the father has depression, but instead of therapy and help, we have stuffed animals fighting the monster that is getting him down. The power of the book to address mental illness is really lessened. There are also some tidbits about his grandmother having cancer, which also could have deepened the story, but they also felt a bit glossed over. This book straddled the line between more serious and more fun, and I would have liked it more if it was one or the other, particularly for the middle grade audience. I also wish his mother had been more supportive and appreciated Clark for being himself. However, we do get the more supportive figures from other teens.

Final verdict: This book is overall cute fun giving stuffed animals a new purpose. While it could have been a much deeper story, it manages to stay pretty light and focus on stuffed animals vs. monster style plots. I would recommend for children who love stuffed animals and fantasy.
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Once Upon a Crime: Batman Tales
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Gotham City is filled with stories--of heroes and of villains,...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
With Joanie Stone's colorful illustrations and Allison Crotzer Kimmel's inspirational...
Cracked Up To Be
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
The high price of perfection is one 'Perfect' Parker Fadley...
Finder, Coal Mine Dog
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
An action-packed and heartwarming story of a dog in the...
Bo the Brave
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A feisty little girl learns who the real monsters are...
Double Trouble!
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
Mischief is multiplied when twins are around! ...
The Morning Flower (The Omte Origins, #2)
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
New York Times bestselling author Amanda Hocking returns to the...
The Derby Daredevils: Kenzie Kickstarts a Team: (The Derby Daredevils Book #1)
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Ever since they can remember, fifth-graders Kenzie (aka Kenzilla) and...
Nina Soni, Former Best Friend
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The first title in a new series featuring a lovable,...
Nina Soni: Sister Fixer
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The second title in a humorous series featuring a charming,...
The Alchemist's Shadow (Watch Hollow #2)
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Having defeated the Garr, a vicious tree monster who lived...
The Lost City (The Omte Origins, #1)
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Amanda Hocking, the New York Times bestselling author of The...
Helen Keller: The World at Her Fingertips
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
When Helen Keller was a baby, she became sick and...
King and Kayla and the Case of the Unhappy Neighbor
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A lovable dog helps his human girl solve a mystery....
Doodleville
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Drew is just a regular artist. But there's nothing ordinary...
Glitch
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
From the critically acclaimed author of Float comes a new...

Latest Member Reviews

The Fountains of Silence
 
5.0
"Eighteen-year-old Daniel Matheson goes to Madrid, Spain with his family in order for his mother to reconnect with the country..."