Appleblossom the Possum

by Holly Goldberg Sloan (2015)

Human beings are privileged, compared to the world’s other animals. Humans have complex thought processes and opposable thumbs. Therefore, we rule the big, planetary school that we know as ‘Earth.’ But what about those mammals, birds, insects, etc., who all land lower on the food chain? They have it hard. Have you ever stopped to think about that?

If you read Appleblossom the Possum, you will. Although Holly Goldberg Sloan’s story is told from multiple perspectives, most chapters are built through the eyes of Appleblossom the possum herself. She’s small, she’s spunky, and she is determined to be the greatest possum actor in the world. Because she and her whole family are theatrically trained, they, of course, prove to be marvelous storytellers – you will learn everything there is to know about being a small marsupial in a human’s world from her siblings and parents as they, too, share their perspective.

Don’t think for a minute, though, that your students won’t be able to connect with the nocturnal critters. Holly Goldberg Sloan proves that, even in the animal kingdom, children will be children. All youngsters will laugh along with Appleblossom’s antics and relate to her infectiously curious outlook. Parents, too, will see themselves in Sloan’s novel – mother and father possums love and protect their children just as fiercely as human parents do.

In addition to an enticing story, Appleblossom the Possum will introduce students to the plays and practices of William Shakespeare, reinforce important everyday safety guidelines, and teach readers more about possums than they ever knew existed.

So, what are you waiting for? Appleblossom the Possum will delight readers of all ages – especially if they’re animal lovers!