Review: Allergic by Megan Wagner Lloyd and Michelle Nee Nutter

There's nothing that Maggie wants more than a puppy. And so, on her birthday, her parents take her to a shelter where she is tasked with selecting a puppy. She finds one she loves straight away. But then Maggie has a severe allergic reaction. It turns out that Maggie is severely allergic to pets.

This cute and beautifully illustrated graphic novel tells the story of how Maggie tries to navigate an allergy that she most definitely doesn't want. And not only does she have to deal with feelings of resentment, but there's a lot going on at home. Her mum is pregnant and her younger twin brothers never seem to have any time for her. Worse still, boundary changes mean that she has to start at a new school. At least the new girl next door wants to be friends. But Claire is a little spoiled. And while she means well, she doesn't always have the best understanding of Maggie's allergies or what's best for her. (After all, she's just a kid.)

The subject matter is handled realistically and in a way that kids can relate to. After all, who hasn't been sick at one point or another, or denied something that they want because of circumstances that are out of their control. And the fight between Maggie and Claire is handled well. It's understandable why Maggie felt the way she did, but I like seeing how the story acknowledges Claire's feelings of hurt as valid, and something that Maggie needs to put right.

A fun, cute read about life and accepting the things that we cannot change.


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