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LIZARD’S GUEST by George Shannon


by George Shannon & illustrated by Jose Aruego & Ariane Dewey

Pub Date: April 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-06-009083-9
Publisher: Greenwillow Books

The latest installment of Lizard’s adventures (Lizard’s Home, 1999, etc.) begins with Lizard exuberantly dancing and singing, until he stomps on Skunk’s toes by accident. Wily Skunk plays on Lizard’s guilty conscience, convincing Lizard to wait on him hand and foot until Lizard catches on. Once he discovers that Skunk’s toes are perfectly healthy, Lizard must find a crafty way to quit being at Skunk’s beck and call, since he doesn’t want to risk Skunk’s stink by making him angry. On his last errand for Skunk, Lizard ventures further and further away, and Skunk must follow him in order to get his demands met. It’s soon apparent that the toes have completely healed, and Lizard throws a party to celebrate Skunk’s “newfound” health and distract Skunk from the fact that he’s been tricked. Young readers will quickly spot Skunk’s duplicity, and will cheer Lizard’s ingenious solution to making Skunk reveal himself. The simple, bright illustrations, full of life and outlined in thin black, perfectly convey the sweetness of the animals’ friendship. Lizard’s indefatigable joviality is hard to resist, and his song—“Sing zing-a-ling. / Sing a zoli-o. / Follow me / And around we’ll go!”—will inspire readers and listeners to sing and leap along with him. (Picture book. 4-7)