written by Smriti Prasadam-Halls; illustrated by Katherina Manolessou
2017 (Abrams Books for Young Readers)
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher
Reginald ate broccoli, Reginald ate beans. Reginald ate bowls and bowls of garlic, grapes, and greens.
Reg is a typical t-rex is almost every way. He has a loud roar, gnashes his teeth, and pounds the ground with his clawed feet. One thing makes him stand out among the dinosaur drove. Reg is a vegetarian. He prefers fruit shakes, avocado pie, and pea and spinach stew to a steak. Offering these delicious foods to family and friends, he's made fun of and frowned upon by his parents. Never having associated with a vegetarian, they choose to mock instead of understand. What's a t-rex to do? Well, how about putting on your backpack and trying to find like-minded creatures? Problem is, when you're a herbivore from a carnivore background, you aren't exactly warmly welcomed. Herbies run away from Reg instead of embracing him. Meanwhile, his t-rex family and friends have started to miss him and see the error of their ways. Regrettably, they may not be able to tell Reg they're sorry, as a massive rock is starting to crash down a cliff and take out the whole lot of them. If only there was a super strong dino to save them.
T.Veg is a superb way of showing how eating your fruits and vegetables is a cool thing to do. It's also a good lesson in accepting our differences instead of making fun of them. That's pretty valuable in an elementary school setting. Teachers can't have enough books that promote this. Many kindergarten classrooms also have units on eating new foods. This would be an excellent opportunity to introduce Reg to your students. Vive le vegetables and vive Reginald!