Many thanks to Jonathan Chapin for this lovely endorsement for Mr. Tanner:
How do we learn about the world, life, and about understanding ourselves better? Well, often times whether it's as kids or as adults it's through storybooks and story songs. Ripple Grove Press's book Mr. Tanner, adopted from Harry Chapin's song "Mr. Tanner", creates the opportunity for dialogue between a parent and a child to discuss topics of values, character, believing in yourself, willingness to give things a try, and to talk about whatever else the conversation may lead to. The line from the chorus of the song, "He sang from his heart and he sang from his soul, he did not know how well he sang it just made him whole," is one launching point to explore how a child recognizes what activities they (the parent and the child) are passionate about. What it is that makes each who they are. What it is that they each may share with others.
In essence, both the song and the book tell the story about finding one's voice (no pun intended), to be yourself, and that you should always thoughtfully be willing to try things and not be scared to fail, because after all that's how we learn. So, enjoy the book and all the life-lessons that it will help you teach your kid!