POPPY AND RYE by Avi

POPPY AND RYE

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 10 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Still grieving over the loss of her beau Ragweed of Poppy (1995), the intrepid deer mouse decides to bring the sad news to his family in this uneven, heavy-handed sequel. Setting out from Dimwood Forest with her hopelessly infatuated porcupine friend, Ereth, Poppy arrives just in time to help Ragweed’s parents and numerous siblings avert eviction. Led by ruthless Caster P. Canad, a crew of beavers has dammed up the nearby brook in preparation for a housing project. The mice have already been flooded out of one home, and their new one is about to be threatened. Saddened--but also secretly relieved to be out from under his brother’s shadow--dreamy Rye dashes out to see what he can do against the beavers, and is quickly captured. Having fallen in love with him at first sight, Poppy organizes a rescue, urging the meek mice to fight back; they do. The bad guys silently depart, and Poppy and Rye set a date. Avi develops his characters to a level of complexity that provides a distracting contrast with the simplistic story, an obvious take on human land-use disputes, and easily distinguishable victims and villains. In language more ugly than colorful, Ereth chews over his feelings for Poppy in several plot-stopping passages, and is last seen accompanying the happy couple back to Dimwood. Readers may wonder who to root for in this disappointing follow-up to one of the best animal stories in years. (Fiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: June 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-380-97638-2
Page count: 182pp
Publisher: Avon/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 1998




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