Amy Leask (Author); Maria Laura Hurtado (Illustrator)
Red T Media (2021)
Reviewed by Lydia (age 7) for Reader Views Kids (01/2022)
“Benny’s Symphony” is the story of a boy named Benny who goes to a place called “The Symphony” with his parents. At first, Benny doesn’t like the symphony because he thinks the chairs are too big; then, he doesn’t like the fact that there’s a lady with big hair. While he’s there, Benny hears loud noises and songs that he thinks are just nothing but noise, but they end up being music! In front of it all, Benny sees a person who his parents call “the conductor” who is dressed up like a penguin. When he gets home, it is time for him to go to bed. He can’t go to sleep because he can’t stop thinking about the music he heard. In the morning, it is very quiet in the house, so Benny finds stuff that can make noise. His parents are not very happy about this, but Benny is very proud!
I liked the book because I like music. There are lots of musical notes in the pictures and some of them look like they are falling out of his hair! The story is funny when Benny uses his creativity to make music, like flushing the toilet. Benny does some really crazy things to make music, and I’m pretty sure my own mom would not like it if I did the things Benny does! I liked looking at the pictures because there are lots of colors and show what is happening throughout the story. I think that kids who like music and making noises with things will really like this book!
Note from Mom: I agree with Lydia that I would not be happy with her if she did some of the things that Benny did to make music! Benny wastes toothpaste, spills lots of water from the kitchen sink on to the floor, and makes armpit noises. Acceptable things to me are patting his tummy and running up and down the stairs. The story in general is cute and clear, written for children from kindergarten through mid-elementary grades. The theme of Benny finding music in everyday items is simple for young readers, and teaches readers of all ages to find the beauty and unexpected in the familiar.