You Can Call Me Willy: A Story for Children About AIDS

Illustrated by Verdon Flory
Pages: 32, Color
Size: 7 1/2" x 8 1/2"
Age Range: 4-8
Item #: 4414606
ISBN: 978-0-94535-460-4
List Price: $9.95
Copyright: 1995
Format: Softcover
Availability: In Stock
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For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories


Wilhelmina (Willy) Jones is 8 years old. She loves baseball, lives with her grandmother, and has AIDS. In this story, Willy talks about her illness and exhibits exceptional strength and courage as she learns to cope with its symptoms and the side effects of treatment, to put up with classroom taunts, and to find fun and friendship.

This engaging story encourages compassion and understanding toward those with the illness. As the book eases children's fears about AIDS, it helps them understand that they all share the same desires and face many of the same problems. Every child will relate to Willy's hopes and fears and find comfort in her strength and spirit. Children who have AIDS as well as those who do not will find their feelings validated by this sensitive story.

You Can Call Me Willy was featured as part of Good Morning America's Millennium Time Capsule which was buried on December 17, 1999.

About the Author
Joan C. Verniero received an MS in Early Childhood Education from the Bank Street College of Education, New York. She has written about and studied the effects of AIDS on our society for 10 years. Most recently, her commentary piece on teaching children about AIDS was published in Education Week magazine.
About the Illustrator
Verdon Flory is an award-winning illustrator whose work has appeared in magazines and newspapers throughout the United States.
Reviews & Awards

I found Ms. Verniero's book to be the first children's book on this subject that is honest, humane, and full of hope...You Can Call Me Willy is the first that deals with living.
—Fred L. Hammond, MS, executive director, Interfaith AIDS Ministry of Greater Danbury, CT

You Can Call Me Willy is a timely and well illustrated book that presents a difficult subject in a sensitive and caring way. I highly recommend it to all. The message of this story is not just for the child, but also for the adult. My thanks to Joan Verniero for this wonderful book.
—Terrence P. Zealand, EDD, executive director, AIDS Research Foundation for Children

This touching story is a fine introduction to understanding AIDS and coping with discrimination...
School Library Journal