Lily is thrilled when her sister Eubie wins a college scholarship. The only thing is that Eubie will have to pay $3,000 for room and board, so the whole family decides to pitch in. Papa will do some extra work, Mama will sew, brother Jacob has a paper route and is going to check for something more and Eubie can babysit. But what can Lily do? She tries to help out around the house, but that’s not enough. No one stops at her iced-tea stand, and her plan to sell worms as fishing bait goes awry. She tries pet-sitting but gets no offers. Then Mrs. Tolliver comes to pick up the dress Mama has made, and an opportunity arises. Mrs. Tolliver is worried about leaving her mother alone, so Lily offers to help out. Now Lily can relax; she’s going to help her sister’s dreams come true. Finely rendered realistic paintings bring life to Lily and her family in this story about taking responsibility and being there for a family member who needs help. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2007

ISBN: 978-0-688-14917-8

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Amistad/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2007


Give this child’s-eye view of a day at the beach with an attentive father high marks for coziness: “When your ball blows across the sand and into the ocean and starts to drift away, your daddy could say, Didn’t I tell you not to play too close to the waves? But he doesn’t. He wades out into the cold water. And he brings your ball back to the beach and plays roll and catch with you.” Alley depicts a moppet and her relaxed-looking dad (to all appearances a single parent) in informally drawn beach and domestic settings: playing together, snuggling up on the sofa and finally hugging each other goodnight. The third-person voice is a bit distancing, but it makes the togetherness less treacly, and Dad’s mix of love and competence is less insulting, to parents and children both, than Douglas Wood’s What Dads Can’t Do (2000), illus by Doug Cushman. (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 23, 2005

ISBN: 0-618-00361-4

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Clarion Books

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2005


A sweet iteration of the “Big Bad Wolf Mellows Out” theme. Here, an old wolf does some soul searching and then learns to like vegetable stew after a half-frozen lamb appears on his doorstep, falls asleep in his arms, then wakes to give him a kiss. “I can’t eat a lamb who needs me! I might get heartburn!” he concludes. Clad in striped leggings and a sleeveless pullover decorated with bands of evergreens, the wolf comes across as anything but dangerous, and the lamb looks like a human child in a fleecy overcoat. No dreams are likely to be disturbed by this book, but hardened members of the Oshkosh set might prefer the more credible predators and sense of threat in John Rocco’s Wolf! Wolf! (March 2007) or Delphine Perrot’s Big Bad Wolf and Me (2006). (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2007

ISBN: 978-1-58925-067-3

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2007

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