Having actually brushed his teeth and shown other signs of being a “goodie-4-paws,” Little Wolf is dispatched by his concerned parents to Uncle Bigbad’s Cunning College For Brute Beasts (“Our Motto: The Badder the Better”) to learn the Nine Rules of Badness. In a series of letters home, Little Wolf not only protests that it was all a joke, he also recounts a series of daffy incidents, culminating in Uncle Bigbad’s sudden death from standing too close to the fire after a surfeit of “bakebeans.” Little Wolf inherits Uncle Bigbad’s loot and “BAD” badge, but having met a troop of cubs—as in cub scouts—he develops a new code of ethics and a taste for further adventure. Plenty of blots, scratch-outs and simple pen-and-ink drawings give Little Wolf’s letters a suitably disheveled look; readers afflicted with delicate sensitivities need not apply, but fans of Dav Pilkey’s Captain Underpants will be heartily amused by this broad British farce. (Fiction. 9-11)

Pub Date: Oct. 5, 1999

ISBN: 1-57505-410-8

Page Count: 130

Publisher: Carolrhoda

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 1999

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This vibrant, thoughtful book from Katz (Over the Moon, 1997) continues her tribute to her adopted daughter, Lena, born in Guatemala. Lena is “seven. I am the color of cinnamon. Mom says she could eat me up”; she learns during a painting lesson that to get the color brown, she will have to “mix red, yellow, black, and white paints.” They go for a walk to observe the many shades of brown: they see Sonia, who is the color of creamy peanut butter; Isabella, who is chocolate brown; Lucy, both peachy and tan; Jo-Jin, the color of honey; Kyle, “like leaves in fall”; Mr. Pellegrino, the color of pizza crust, golden brown. Lena realizes that every shade is beautiful, then mixes her paints accordingly for portraits of her friends—“The colors of us!” Bold illustrations celebrate diversity with a child’s open-hearted sensibility and a mother’s love. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1999

ISBN: 0-8050-5864-8

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1999

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PLB 0-679-99369-X Inspired by local versions of a popular Japanese folktale, Sierra (Antarctic Antics, 1998, etc.) recasts a yarn that usually stars Momotaro, or “Peach Boy,” with a female lead. When giant, ogre-like oni take away all the village’s babies to make snacks of their tasty navels, little Uriko-hime is left behind; she was born from a melon, and so has no belly button. Gathering up a small band of animal companions along the way, Uriko tricks the monsters into walloping themselves with clubs, and rescues the children, leaving delicious millet dumplings behind in consolation. Clad in a flowing, watermelon-colored kimono, Uriko makes a doughty heroine, equally skilled in cookery and swordplay; So’s art has a traditional look, with theatrically gesturing figures, busy crowd scenes, and energetic brushwork. A vigorously told comic adventure. (Picture book/folklore. 7-9)

Pub Date: May 1, 1999

ISBN: 0-679-89369-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1999

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