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READY, SET, SCHOOL! by Jacquelyn Mitchard


by Jacquelyn Mitchard, illustrated by Paul Rátz de Tagyos

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: July 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-06-050766-4
Publisher: HarperCollins

Oprah Book Club–phenom Mitchard enters the subgenre of “first-day-at-school” books with insouciant charm. Young Rory the raccoon hides from his parents when they want him to have his very first sleepover at his cousins’ house, while the adults attend the semi-annual gourmet garbage party. After several surprisingly enjoyable nights with the cousins, Rory knows that time is nigh for attendance at the Remarkable Raccoon Suburban School. By now he feels ready. Until now, any deviation in color of the text is usually a shouted “NO!” from Rory, who is not quite ready to face up to the situation. At the end, his parents’ “NO” is rendered in red ink, suddenly unready to send Rory to school. Rory exuberantly shouts out “YES!” Rátz de Tagyos’s illustrations add tremendously to the humor—though these are strange-looking raccoons. However, the facial expressions, the warm interior color palette and the vivid deep blue of the evening sky grab the viewer’s interest. Numerous examples of visual humor should amuse readers. For its theme, there is nothing unique, but combine the text with the illustrations and there are some very resourceful raccoons on the loose. (Picture book. 3-6)