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Bug in a Vacuum by Mélanie Watt

Bug in a Vacuum

by Mélanie Watt

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7921152,477 (4.15)3



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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Even a child can predict what happens in this story. A bug gets sucked into a vacuum. But no one realizes the emotional anguish this little flying star will go through. Great illustrations and fun narrative guides young readers through a the stages of loss. For this reason it is important to note that this book is best suited to a child who is at the age and maturity to understand the concept of grief.
  Robyn126 | Jul 21, 2016 |
Highly creative and wonderfully illustrated, this is a tale of a bug breezing by who is swept up by being in the wrong place at the wrong time. An old canister vacuum is in use and the bug just happens to be in the proximity. As a dog sits by the sweeper with his toy, suddenly his precious stuffed toy animal is taken away by the vacuum as well.

The reader watches as the dog mourns the loss of his toy friend. And, we see the bug going through four stages of grief as he tries to accept his new surroundings.

Ever faithful and missing his toy friend, the emotions of the dog's face and well done. The bug is trapped, and his world becomes encased in the dark with all other items consumed by the sweeper.

Denial, anger, bargaining, and then acceptance are all the emotions that pass through the bugs mind. In the darkness, the illustrator shows dirt, a comb, and all other items that find their way trapped in this alien world.

It is a good book to read to a child who has experienced loss, but I think that an adult needs to explain what is happening. This is an intellectual story spun creatively. In the end, as the bug accepts his situation, the canister is on a trash pile, opened as a result of the rough journey to the dump, and the bug is freed into the bright new sunshiny day. ( )
  Whisper1 | Mar 12, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received this book in exchange for a review.
*Note: I already reviewed this book but my review is not showing up, so I am writing a review again.

My daughter and I were excited to read this book because the book was so lush - great artwork, hard sturdy cover and a dust cover.

This book is for children, explaining the stages of grief.

The book is about a fly who gets sucked into a vacuum, along with a dog's toy. As the fly and the dog go through the vacuum, the stages of grief are shown: Denial, Anger, Bargaining and Acceptance.

As the fly goes through each stage of acceptance, a different scenario plays out on the page, as well as showcasing the dog's toy.

In the end, the resolve is acceptance and the end of the vacuum.

My daughter and I LOVED the artwork - it was wonderful. The story - not so much. Since we weren't grieving, we were actually kind of depressed at the end. I think this MAY help a child grieve, if they are old enough to understand the pictures and the correlation to death.

I think the artwork should stay, but on the next printing the story needs to be improved. A good consideration for a child who needs help understanding grief. ( )
  Vintage_books_baby | Jan 31, 2016 |
My three year old son (who loves vacuums) picked this up at the library and asked me to add it to our pile. It wasn't until later when he had me read it that I realized what a an interesting find this was!

This book is about a bug that gets sucked up into the vacuum cleaner unexpectedly one day. He then goes through the five stages of grief. I had no idea what was going on at first. All of a sudden there was an advertisement for "Denial" a can of aerosol spray that "wipes out the ugly truth". You then see the bug inside the vacuum acting like everything is just hunky dory and he's just on an adventure--it's not real yet. Then the bug begins to move through the other stages of grief, one by one. There is an advertisement for a pretend product with a name of one of the stages on it and a witty saying about that stage/product.

I had to read this 95 page book four times. There's a lot going on, as it turns out.

The bug is "on top of the world" when "it's entire life changed with the switch of a button". Reminiscent of many unexpected tragedies in life. They come when you least expect it. Thus making them harder to accept and get through. This book takes little people on the journey in a sort of fun, charming way. The bug talks itself through these stages using similar language we do when we go through these stages in real life--thus making it relatable.

At the end of the story, after going through the stage of Acceptance, the old fashioned vacuum canister gets put to the curb and dropped at the dump. The canister breaks open from being dumped, and there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The bug has gone through his five stages of grief and has emerged back into the light of day. And starts anew.

I did not like this book the first time I read it. I thought it was too preachy. But the more I read it, the more I liked it. A lot. I think this book would be best for slightly older children since you have to really read between the lines. And the whole point, I assume, is for kids that have experienced grief or loss to be able to find connections and discuss them. But I think this idea would be lost on very young children. I think I'm going to recommend this book to my school counselor because I could see her reading this with kids and helping them to talk through their emotions.

The pictures in this book are, I think, beautiful! I thought the added touch of the vacuum being in mid century household vacuum was interesting. The color scheme and the artistic touches were impressive.
  WeaverJ | Nov 20, 2015 |
Little, wide-eyed Bug is doing what bugs do: flying around the house, over the food, stepping on the globe, He'd never have guessed what was going to happen... The vacuum cleaner swallowed him! That's definitely something bad! Poor Bug goes then through the five stages of grief. Denial: what a wonderful place he has just found! Bargaining: If the vacuum cleaner let him go, he will be a totally different, renewed bug. Anger: He wants out right now! Otherwise he will destroy the stupid vacuum cleaner! Despair: Let's face it. He will never go out again... Acceptance: He has to focus in what he has instead in what he has lost, and everything's gonna be all right.
I know! At this point you want to grab a hammer and let Bug free! Thankfully not everything is lost and sooner than later Bug is free and ready for a new start.

This book is SO GOOD! It explains the steps of grief in a clear, honest way without lacking of fun. The illustrations are cute, and they add so much to the reading experience. 5 stars and standing ovation!

Vacuuming will never be the same...

Check out more children's book reviews in my Reviews in Chalk Blog! ( )
  Sanlema | Nov 12, 2015 |
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