Although readers only get to see Angela and her dad engaged in a short list of activities, the sense of camaraderie and affection is unmistakable—whether she is riding on his shoulders or celebrating the winner of their many races, Angela is always depicted with a smile during their time together, and young readers will certainly appreciate the opportunity to glimpse everyday parent-child moments rendered in such a positive light. Even the story’s extended push-up scene, where Angela climbs onto her father’s back and they count off push-ups together, gives kids and parents a chance to challenge themselves to try the same fun activity.
Kerice Robinson (I Am Full of Thanks) dedicates this story to her earliest memory of her father “working out by the front door” of their home, revealing the emotional basis for the exercise theme that RObinson employs to remind readers that making lasting memories is easy—and that bonding doesn’t have to involve an expensive outing, but can be as simple as riding a bike together. In a fast-paced world, everyone can use a reminder to slow down, and Dad Is My Best Friend’s inviting illustrations and emphasis on fleeting moments of connection is spot on.
Takeaway: This tender father-daughter story celebrates the power of simple connections.
Great for fans of: Gregory E. Lang’s Why a Daughter Needs a Dad, Sean Williams’s Girl Dad.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A
Dad Is My Best Friend by Kerice K. Robinson and illustrated by Kavion Robinson tells the story of the beautiful relationship between a father and daughter. Our narrator Angela is a young girl who proudly proclaims that her dad is her best friend. She then takes us on an ordinary yet fun-filled day spent with her father. Together, they race and bike outside and then come indoors for some more exercise together. We get to count how many push-ups Angela’s dad can do with her sitting on his back. Finally, at the end of a long day, he tucks her into bed with love.
After reading this book, the first word that came to my mind was “cozy.” Kerice K. Robinson notes in the beginning that some of the scenes were inspired by her early memories with her father, and the genuine love between dad and daughter is deeply evident throughout this book. The story feels gentle, safe, warm, and cozy! Another endearing part of Dad Is My Best Friend is its beautiful artwork. Each picture is bright, detailed, focused, and truly captures the love in Angela and her father’s relationship. The vocabulary sounds like the genuine narrative of a young girl, which makes the book perfect for early readers who need a book they can go through on their own. However, I believe the best way for a kid to enjoy this book is to snuggle up with their dad. A warning to fathers who plan to read it. Your kid will want you to do push-ups while they sit on your back because it looks like fun in the book. Get ready for a father-daughter bonding workout!