THE BAD GOOD MANNERS BOOK

A rhyming list of dos and don'ts, with the don'ts alluringly depicted in Cole's chaotically zany pencil-and-watercolor illustrations. As she showed in The Trouble With Mom and The Trouble With Dad (both, 1986) and other books in the series, Cole understands the vicarious delights of reading about rule-breakers, especially for children, who are tripping over new social expectations at every turn. She plays to her audience in a state of high glee, while the last spreads—without losing the sense of fun- -move beyond etiquette to the Golden Rule: ``Do as you would be done by others/as much as you possibly can!'' The illustration shows a boy skateboarding down the hall to his parents' bedroom, carrying breakfast on a tray (and his head), who collides with the cat and is catapulted—sausage, eggs, and all—onto the bed, where his spattered parents console him: a reassuring demonstration that good intentions are appreciated despite unexpected results. A book to join Sesyle Joslin's What Do You Do, Dear? and What Do You Say, Dear? (both, 1958) and the much more recent lessons of Caralyn and Mark Buehner's It's a Spoon, Not a Shovel (1995). (Picture book. 5- 8)

Pub Date: June 1, 1996

ISBN: 0-8037-2006-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 1996

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BUBBA, THE COWBOY PRINCE

A FRACTURED TEXAS TALE

A Cinderella parody features the off-the-wall, whang-dang Texas hyperbole of Ketteman (The Year of No More Corn, 1993, etc.) and the insouciance of Warhola, who proves himself only too capable of creating a fairy godcow; that she's so appealingly whimsical makes it easy to accept the classic tale's inversions. The protagonist is Bubba, appropriately downtrodden and overworked by his wicked stepdaddy and loathsome brothers Dwayne and Milton, who spend their days bossing him around. The other half of the happy couple is Miz Lurleen, who owns ``the biggest spread west of the Brazos.'' She craves male companionship to help her work the place, ``and it wouldn't hurt if he was cute as a cow's ear, either.'' There are no surprises in this version except in the hilarious way the premise plays itself out and in Warhola's delightful visual surprises. When Lurleen tracks the bootless Bubba down, ``Dwayne and Milton and their wicked daddy threw chicken fits.'' Bubba and babe, hair as big as a Texas sun, ride off to a life of happy ranching, and readers will be proud to have been along for the courtship. (Picture book/folklore. 6-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1997

ISBN: 0-590-25506-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 1997

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THE DOG THAT DUG FOR DINOSAURS

This easy reader for children reading at the fluency level recounts the story of a girl named Mary Ann Anning and her dog, Tray. They lived on the coast of England in the early 1800s, although the time frame is given only as “a long, long time ago.” Mary Ann and Tray became famous for their discoveries of fossils, including dinosaur bones. They discovered the first pterodactyl found in England, and the name was assigned to their fossil. The story focuses a little too much on the dog, and the title misses a great opportunity to completely acknowledge a girl accomplishing something important in the scientific world, especially in a much earlier era and without formal training or education. Despite this drawback, both Mary Ann and Tray are appealing characters and the discovery of the fossils and subsequent notice from scientists, collectors, and even royalty is appealing and well written. Sullivan’s illustrations provide intriguing period details in costumes, tools, and buildings, as well as a clever front endpaper of fossil-strewn ground covered with muddy paw prints. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: July 1, 2004

ISBN: 0-689-85708-X

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Aladdin

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2004

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