How to Get Married


Author: Sally Lloyd-Jones

Illustrator: Sue Heap

Publishing Information: Schwartz & Wade Books, 2009

Number of Pages: 32

Tags: Fiction, Family, Picture Book, K-1

Genre: Realistic Fiction



This story serves as a step-by-step guide for how to find someone you’d like to marry, and how to, then, plan out a wedding. The story is told from the perspective of the “bride” and the strategies she uses for planning out her marriage.

I must admire the fact that the book is very inclusive, as the bride states a very diverse range of people you can marry, and brushes on the topic of polygamy as well when she says, “Usually, you’re not allowed to marry lots of people at once. Except sometimes you are” (Lloyd Jones, 8). As a result, I found that this would serve as a window to teach children to be very open-minded in terms of who another person chooses to marry, and the different types of families that result from those marriages. Also, it becomes both a mirror and a door, as they assess their own preferences in marriage and can practice both their own preferences and a tolerance for the preferences of others. As a result, I think that this simple how-to book can be a fun and more lighthearted way to teach children about an event that happens all the time.

Although the book is meant to be a silly and fun way to approach the topic, I did find bits of the story to be a bit problematic. The bride provides different lists of things you should not do in front of the person you like, or they won’t want to marry you. This could send a negative message to children that tells them that they must act a particular way to impress someone, rather than being themselves. Also, she creates a list of people you should not marry, which backpedals on the inclusiveness of the story, and teaches children that some people are less deserving of marriage/love than others. As a result, I think it sends the wrong message in some aspects, and I’m not sure I would want to read this to children in my classroom.

As a whole, I found this book to be a fun way for children to learn about the topic of marriage in terms they could understand. While I did have some critiques in some areas of the storyline, I was not completely turned off by the book and still found parts that I believe children can really benefit from.