My Sister, Alicia May

My Sister Alicia9780979203596_p0_v1_s260x420,jpgMy Sister, Alicia May

Nancy Tupper Ling, Author

Shennen Bersani, Illustrator

Pleasant St. Press, Fiction, 2009

Suitable for Ages: 4-8

Themes: Down Syndrome, Sisters, Bullying, Special Needs

Opening: BANG! Every morning Alicia May throws open my bedroom door. Crack! The “Stay Out!” sign falls to the floor.  “Here I am!” she crises “Rise and shine!”

Synopsis: In many ways, Rachel and Alicia are like any sisters. But Rachel knows her sister is very different, and very special. She has Down syndrome. Alicia May likes dogs and horses, is curious about ladybugs and dragonflies, talks to animals at the zoo and calls them funny names, loves to paint her nails, is friendly and gives good hugs. Sometimes Alicia May is annoying and embarrassing and Rachel doesn’t want to be around her. But, when boys on the bus tease Alicia May, Rachel is the first to stand up for her sister.

Why I like this story: This is a heartwarming story for siblings of children with Down’s syndrome. Nancy Tupper Ling based the story on the lives of two real sisters she’s close friends with.  It is a compassionate story that offers a peek into the daily life of a child with special needs and the complexities for the family. I like that the story is told from Rachel’s viewpoint.  Shennen Bersani’s illustrations are colorful pastels and almost photographic in their detail. Look at the pictures of the girls at the end of the book as she has really captured their features and personalities. Check out Nancy Tupper Ling’s website.

Resources: Contact the National Down Syndrome Society for more information on resources, success stories, transition tool kits, caring for your family and advocacy.


About Patricia Tiltonhttps://childrensbooksheal.wordpress.comI want "Children's Books Heal" to be a resource for parents, grandparents, teachers and school counselors. My goal is to share books on a wide range of topics that have a healing impact on children who are facing challenges in their lives. If you are looking for good books on grief, autism, visual and hearing impairments, special needs, diversity, bullying, military families and social justice issues, you've come to the right place. I also share books that encourage art, imagination and creativity. I am always searching for those special gems to share with you. If you have a suggestion, please let me know.

28 thoughts on “My Sister, Alicia May

  1. Some friends of ours have a Down Syndrom daughter. She battles many health problems, but she is absolutely the sweetest little thing. I think it’s such a tragedy that 90% of these babies are being aborted. Their lives count!


    • I know many kids of all ages with DS and I am I’m impressed with how well they do. One in college and another working and living independently. Have never heard those statistics.


  2. Thank you for sharing this book! Two of my friends have just had a baby with the Down Syndrom, so I shared the book with them. They have two older daughters so I think this book can help them to understand what they may feel in the future.


  3. This sounds like a very special book! The sister bond can be a powerful one. Thanks for sharing this one. Great review, Pat!


  4. This book sounds like it shares a fantastic message. One that definitely needs to be shared and bring love and understanding to more people. Love seeing what books you find to share with us. They are always so wonderful.


  5. Thanks for this selection, Patricia! As with siblins with Autism this disability or different ability needs to be explored and talked about. A discussion from a picture book is both educational and non threatening. I need to read this book. I”m looking for it at my library. 🙂


  6. Just saw your lovely review. So grateful! Thank you. I’m glad you enjoyed My Sister, Alicia May. The only sad news is that it is officially out of print now. I’m trying to learn about making it into an eBook or paperback since I would like it to continue to be available to readers. I still have some copies at home is anyone is interested just connect with me through my website. Best!


    • I’m glad you liked the review. It got a lot of traffic on twitter the last ten days! It’s still in the public libraries. There are so few good DS books for kids. eBook would good, as well as paperback. Have you thought about Kickstart or crowdfunding? I know some authors who have successfully raised the money to publish their books. Wish you the best. Thank you for leaving a comment.


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