Book Review

“The Centipede Who Couldn’t Tie His Shoes”

Title of reviewA unique solution for those who struggle with tying their shoes that also touches on being bullied and fitting in.

(Disclaimer: I received a free advance copy of the PDF in exchange for review.)

This book tells the tale of an adorable centipede who has trouble tying his 100 shoes (which would be a feat for anyone, truly. I mean I struggled with two so I feel his pain in an albeit very small comparison, but still, yikes). Some school mates make fun of him, a bully gets on his case a bit and he himself is bummed out and frustrated. Our poor little many-footed Centipede fears he may be doomed to wearing laceless “baby shoes” forever. That is until he is called to the Principal’s office and finds help in the form of the school Occupational Therapist (OT). Okay, a quick pause here to explain something…I did not know what the heck an OT was before I met Dr Dobyns. She explained it very well, both in real life to me and in this book, that Occupational Therapy is a lot like Life Engineering. An OT will not ask what’s the matter with you but rather what matters to you? Then they will find a way to help you accomplish your aspirations and dreams and sometimes that all starts with learning how to tie a shoe.

Ben the Centipede learns a handy “life hack” from his OT using different colored laces to help overcome the optical gymnastics that make tying shoes challenging especially for a kid who wears thick glasses to help with low vision. In the end, well, I won’t spoil it for you, you’ll have to pick up a copy or two (for buddy-system reading, of course!) to see how a child with 100 feet ultimately deals with having 100 shoes. With a nod to Dale Carnegie, suffice it to say Centipede Ben “wins friends and influences people” thanks to some creative problem solving and an OT who specializes in making things better (and who happens to have a large supply of dual-colored and no-tie laces at the ready).  A very enjoyable reading/learning experience to say the least!   

By Julie