Oh No! Time to Go! by Rebecca Doughty

Parting with something or someone can be tough for anyone, so it’s nice to see a children’s book that attempts to help them understand and cope with saying goodbye for various reasons (though not the permanent sort — it’s a lighthearted book).

Oh No! Time to Go! is written in rhyming prose from the point of view of the little boy on the cover, who begins by telling us that he loves hellos and doesn’t like goodbyes. He goes on to describe the different and quirky ways in which the people — and animals — in his life say hello and goodbye.

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Finally, we see the reason for his angst: his friend, a little girl who lives nearby, is moving away. The boy looks depressed as his neighbours drive off for good, but he says, “Okay, I’ll do it [say goodbye]. I’ll be strong” even though it’s hard to do.

The book ends on a positive note, though, with new neighbours moving in and the boy realising that “for each goodbye, there’s a new hello” — a neat way to introduce the idea of change being a part of life, and that people come and go. This would, thus, be a particularly helpful book for kids experiencing changes that would entail them leaving familiar faces behind, or for those who generally have trouble ‘letting go’ of things and people.

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