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JENNIFER JONES WON’T LEAVE ME ALONE by Frieda Wishinsky

JENNIFER JONES WON’T LEAVE ME ALONE

By Frieda Wishinsky (Author) , Neal Layton (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-87614-921-2
Publisher: Carolrhoda

A case of unrequited love makes a young boy cringe until the source of adulation moves away. A typical scamp, the protagonist curls his toes in embarrassment as his desk-mate Jennifer Jones showers him with unwanted affection. Love notes and whispered endearments are the modus operandi of this pint-sized femme fatale. However, her unrequited adoration causes her would-be swain plenty of teasing in the play yard. Unexpectedly, the boy’s fervent wish that Jennifer Jones would go away—to live with the monkeys in the trees or maybe even the moon—suddenly comes true. However, once Jennifer has left his side, her jilted beau longs for her return. Wishinsky’s (What’s the Matter with Albert, not reviewed, etc.) rhyming verses maintain a cheery tone, wryly capturing those prickly, poignant pangs of first crushes; Jennifer’s amorous advances are coquettishly innocent while the boy’s response is all that would be expected from someone still interested in frogs and puppy dog tails. Layton’s (The Sunday Blues, p. 884, etc.) cartoon-style illustrations have a free-spirited feel to them. The full-bleed illustrations contribute to the tale’s impish tone with a mix of haphazard sketches and zany collage art featuring some hilarious insertions and comical depictions. A valentine tale that will keep readers, both the lovelorn and ardently pursued, in stitches. (Picture book. 4-8)