GUMBRELLA by Barry  Root

GUMBRELLA

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 8
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KIRKUS REVIEW

The tone is light, the pictures are bright—but there’s a hint of Stephen King in this tale of a big sister who loves playing doctor to small injured creatures so much that she won’t let them go when they’re healed. Fond of “helping her fellow animals if she could, especially the cute ones,” Gumbrella the elephant dispatches her little brother into the woods to bring back, “squirrels with sniffles, mice with measles, moles with mumps,” and anyone else too ill to flee. Soon the house is full of tiny patients, all placed in big hospital beds and heaped with relentless TLC. Months later, weary of having their pleas to be released ignored, the animals at last stage a mass exodus during a spectacular elephantine dance recital. (“The applause sounded different this time, more like wings flapping and feet scurrying.”) Nevertheless, they return to smother their disconsolate former captor with the same sort of attention she had given them. Moreover, it looks as though she revels in it. Deadpan expressions and low-key reactions enhance the ambiguity of this veteran illustrator’s faintly offbeat solo debut. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-399-23347-4
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 2002




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