Enemies… (and Love)

Enemy Pie

Most picture books on the topic of enemies are trite. The intensity of the conflict that children actually have and the sorts of conflict portrayed in picture books are of strikingly different types.  Thus the “solutions” in the stories are an incredible mismatch for reality.

Enemy Pie is written in the spirit of Lincoln’s “With malice toward none, with charity for all…”. Yet Derek Munson also does what most picture book authors won’t: admit that kids really get angry and want to hurt their enemies.

This is not a “5 Steps to a Conflict-Free Kid” sort of book. (I think you have to be in marketing to make that type of claim.) But at the core of the story are the tools for potential change and a lesson about loving your enemy. It reminded me of Martin Luther King Jr. saying, “Hate can not drive out hate. Only love can do that.”

Lincoln and King were staring down the marquee issues of their day with love; and it worked. I’m thinking love can handle kids’ conflict too.

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