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IRIS HAS A VIRUS by Arlene Alda


by Arlene Alda & illustrated by Lisa Desimini

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 9th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-88776-844-6
Publisher: Tundra

Providing low-key reassurance for anyone who’s had to stay in bed with a bug, Alda tracks young Iris’s three-day malaise from that general feeling that things are not quite right, through limp exhaustion, nausea (“Her head was hot. / She threw up in a pot”), a soothing visit to the doctor, troubled dreams of “Bugs with spots, / Bugs on cots, / Bugs like ants, / Bugs with pants” and on to full recovery. Desimini focuses largely on faces in her cut-paper collages, depicting Iris and her twin Doug (who turns out to be next in line) with red hair and bright green eyes. The less-savory products of illness are mentioned but never actually seen, and there is plenty of parental care in evidence. Written in a somewhat mystifying mix of prose and verse, this is a pricey but refreshing cup of literary chicken soup for illin’ children. (Picture book. 6-8)