"Teo's Cockatoo" Reviewed

My 10th book in the “Oh, Mateo!” series was recently reviewed by an 11-year-old reader, Alexia Bejasa, in the Junior Inquirer Magazine.

It was a peaceful Sunday morning—I was quietly reading the dailies—when I came upon her review. Without warning my heart went boing, boing, boing, and the silence was broken. My pulse always goes berserk when I get feedback from readers. Aside from the euphoria I feel over unexpected grace, I am always amazed at the insight of children.

Alexia’s review:

"The remarkable storybook adventure is a fictional tale about a cockatoo with a lovely yellow crest that was caged and maltreated for a very long time. Its owners, Puto and Pako, were very mean and would always make fun of the cockatoo.

"Luckily, a day came when Puto accidentally left the cockatoo’s cage open. The bird flew to Teo, a kind little boy. Teo taught the bird how to say good things and how to be polite. Towards the end of the story, the smart cockatoo proved to be a big help for the whole barangay!

"Teo’s Cockatoo teaches a lot about caring for pets and treating them well. This story affirms that our pets reflect who we are.

"I enjoyed reading the book because of the descriptive style of the author. She characterized the two owners very well and gave a clear picture of how the poor cockatoo stayed still in his cage.

"Artist Bet Parrocha-Doctolero’s illustration were creatively done, as she used all sorts of shapes and colors to enhance the scenes. My favorite drawings were of Teo and the cockatoo spending time together.

"Although the book may have some nasty words, I would still recommend it for children my age. Another good thing about the book is that it contained a Filipino translation of the story which would help readers appreciate and understand it."

There’s that noise in my heart again—boing, boing, boing!

Thank you, Alexia.


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