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Loris Opens Up His Heart: An Emotional Story For Kids (Courage Tales) by Dagmara Sitek (Book Review)

It takes courage to stand up for others. It takes even more to stand up for yourself.

When Loris is placed in a new foster home (again), his foster siblings just can’t make sense of him. He doesn’t play, joke, or laugh, and he certainly has no interest in the town’s charity race. But when things get tough, Loris amazes his newfound family with his hidden courage and resilience!

Join Loris and his newfound family on this journey of self-discovery and acceptance with this relatable children’s book perfect for home or the classroom.

“Loris Opens Up His Heart” by Dagmara Sitek is a testament to the power of empathy and compassion. It models positive interactions and helps kids put themselves in someone else’s shoes. More importantly, it encourages them to help one another through their grief and fears.

Children will learn that even though fears might be scary, facing them can lead to feelings of safety and love.

Amazon Purchase Link


I received a complimentary copy of this book from Reedsy Discovery.  I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.


According to Let it Be Us (website), there are approximately 400,000 children in foster care in the United States. Fifteen percent live in institutions or group homes—also, 26,000 “age out” of the system each year. Most kids in foster care move from home to home, never knowing stability. Due to childhood trauma that led them to be in the foster care system, it’s common for them to have mental problems and trust issues. In addition to that, when a kid enters the system, they don’t remain in one home but get bounced around from place to place. This causes more trust issues and takes a toll on them mentally, even more so if their foster parents are unkind.  

Loris didn’t have the best home life before living with Cam, Inaya, and their foster mom. Because of this, he closed himself off from everyone. Loris couldn’t accept their kindness. He mentally and physically shut the door on them. Loris displayed behavior that is typical of a lot of kids in his situation. Thankfully, his new family didn’t give up on him. Cam and Inaya tried to include Loris in the charity run, offered to tutor him in math and thanked him when he helped them out of a sticky situation. 

Foster kids are like every other child in the world. They need security, to feel loved, to know they belong, and their family has their back 100%. Loris shared with his siblings about his anger issues: how it can be like hot lava. In time, Loris realized he had found everything he wanted: people who cared about him and would literally and figuratively give him the shirt off their back. 

The book’s synopsis states, “It beautifully illustrates that true bravery and strength can come from the simple act of opening up their hearts.” I absolutely agree with their assessment. Loris’s story is touching and depicts a child’s emotional journey in the system. I recommend sharing Loris’s journey with your foster family and not just telling them but showing your new family member that they are in a safe place and are wanted and loved. 

Amazon’s recommended reading is 5-10 years. 


Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score:  ❤❤

Amazon Purchase Link



Meet the Author

Dagmara Sitek is a Montreal-based mother of two, passionate about teaching children valuable social and emotional life lessons through her beautifully illustrated, and relatable books about children in foster care.

Amazon Author Page Link

Reedsy Author Link




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