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If You Want A Quality Children’s Book, You Turn To The Dr. Seussian Tony Dungy

Perhaps comparing Tony Dungy to Dr. Seuss is a bit of a stretch. Coach Dungy doesn’t allow himself to get bogged down with rhyming and childlike whimsy. You see, Tony Dungy believes that while having fun is an integral part of childhood, reading is incredibly important and sometimes, books that children read should have a positive, life-affirming message. An admirable goal, to be sure.

That is why Dungy and his wife Lauren have embarked on writing an eight-book series whose goal is to instruct parents on how to impart to their children life’s important lessons. The first book in the series is You Can Be A Friend, and it is described as follows (via Barnes & Noble):

A new children’s book written by parents extraordinaire Tony and Lauren Dungy! You Can Be a Friend is the first title in Tony and Lauren Dungy’s series of children’s books which feature inspirational stories that remind kids of the importance of family, friends, and self-confidence. In this story, Jade has been planning to have her birthday party at a water park, but her new friend, Hannah, is in a wheelchair. Now Jade has a decision to make: is it more important to keep her party where she planned, or to make sure all her friends have fun? Tony and Lauren Dungy present this subtly beautiful story, which will help any parent explain that having limitations can never limit the boundaries of friendship.

Sure, I could go ahead and be my typical snarky self here, but to be honest, the book really does seem to contain some good messages for kids. Further, the way I see it, the more time Dungy spends writing children’s books, the less time he’ll have for his high-minded moralizing, something that has become a trademark of Dungy’s in his role as NFL analyst. This is precisely why I am a tad bit concerned over the title of the second book in the series: Little Rex Ryan Is A Big Potty-Mouthed Meanie Who Needs His Mouth Washed Out With Soap. I have no idea what sort of lessons will be imparted by that book.

Tony Dungy, wife have deal to co-author children’s books to promote reading [The Canadian Press]