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IVY AND BEAN BREAK THE FOSSIL RECORD by Annie Barrows

IVY AND BEAN BREAK THE FOSSIL RECORD

From the Ivy + Bean series, volume 3

By Annie Barrows (Author) , Sophie Blackall (Illustrator)

Age Range: 7 - 10

Pub Date: July 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-8118-5683-6
Publisher: Chronicle

Best friends Ivy and Bean return for a very welcome third outing. When Bean’s desperate boredom forces her to the pages of The Amazing Book of World Records, she determines to break one herself, no matter what. But after her attempt to stuff 257 straws in her mouth falls short by some 217 straws, and her loudest scream fails to shatter her sister’s glass octopus, she combines her newfound interest in one-of-a-kind stunts with Ivy’s fascination with paleontology to pursue dreams of fame in her backyard. Barrows balances the two girls’ personalities perfectly, Ivy’s quiet studiousness the steady counterpoint to Bean’s restless ebullience. The odd happy piece of information—“It took [Mary Anning] a whole year to get the whole [ichthyosaur] out. . . . Chip, chip, chip, a tiny bit at a time”—is conveyed effortlessly without impinging on the terrifically childlike voice—“Lookit! I got one.” Blackall’s black-and-white spot illustrations share equal billing with the text, punctuating the written narrative with wry, spiky visuals that capture the kids’ personalities beautifully. The resolution deflates Ivy and Bean’s ambitions but leaves both dignity and enthusiasm intact—other record attempts can wait till tomorrow. Just right. (Fiction. 7-10)