I’ll admit, I was a bit apprehensive to read Dear Mr. President by Sophie Siers and illustrated by Anne Villeneuve, largely because it featured a child who agreed with the despicable President Trump about building a wall. And honestly, it’s one of those things where I just feel uncomfortable with ignorant people who spout off horrible and, quite frankly, racist ideas. As Trump is one of them and his wall stems from racist beliefs, it’s really no wonder that this was a book I did not go into reading lightly.
And I had a feeling when I requested it that the book would follow a better path than the unfortunate goon we have for a leader. Wonderfully, I was correct. And, in its own way, this book really does handle the matter rather tastefully. It was perhaps a bit too nice to the man in office than I personally believe he deserves, but at the end of the day I do think that’s an important message to send to children.
Dear Mr. President basically follows young Sam, who is in the not so great circumstance of having to share a room with his brother, overhearing that the new President wants to build a wall to separate America from Mexico and, as sharing his room with his older brother shows itself as an annoyance, sees building a wall as a viable solution to the problem with his sibling. Through some really cute illustrations, Sam discusses how he would like to separate their room into two with a wall so that he can have his own space and won’t have to deal with all the frustrating aspects of sharing his room.
Told in the format of multiple letters written to President Trump, it follows Sam’s misunderstanding of situations and his conversations with those around him until he finally learns of better ways to improve circumstances as well as how to build trust and better relationships with those around him. In every way, Dear Mr. President is about a boy learning and growing immensely as a person and then imploring the President himself to do so as well. And really, I can do nothing but commend it for that.
I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.