LUCY ROSE

BUSY LIKE YOU CAN’T BELIEVE

Now in fourth grade, the spunky, confident Lucy Rose continues her journal through the Thanksgiving school break. In her familiar chatty style, the curly red-head talks about her daily life, focusing on three pressing issues. She’s convinced she will play the role of Annie in the school musical play, but is sorely disappointed to be cast as the despicable Miss Hannigan. Her eavesdropping leads to the concern that her best friend Jonique will be moving because Mrs. McBee has gambled the family nest egg away. Worst of all, a “MAN,” Ned Eastman, keeps calling and sounding like her divorced mother’s new boyfriend. Kelly writes with a dual sophistication that offers the voice of a child’s innocently misconstrued perceptions about language, coupled with some laughable adult-oriented verbal nuances to cause any parent reading aloud silent chuckles. Returning secondary characters of Melonhead, Pop, Madam, Glamma and, of course, Dad in Ann Arbor, Mich. all contribute to this nine-year-old’s outlook on life, school, relationships, “P-U multiplication tables” and all those palindromes. Graduating fans of Gooney Bird Greene will eagerly expect more updates on Lucy Rose’s accomplishments. (Fiction. 7-10)

Pub Date: Sept. 12, 2006

ISBN: 0-385-73319-4

Page Count: 176

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2006

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A fitting farewell, still funny, acute, and positive in its view of human nature even in its 37th episode.

HORRIBLE HARRY SAYS GOODBYE

From the Horrible Harry series , Vol. 37

A long-running series reaches its closing chapters.

Having, as Kline notes in her warm valedictory acknowledgements, taken 30 years to get through second and third grade, Harry Spooger is overdue to move on—but not just into fourth grade, it turns out, as his family is moving to another town as soon as the school year ends. The news leaves his best friend, narrator “Dougo,” devastated…particularly as Harry doesn’t seem all that fussed about it. With series fans in mind, the author takes Harry through a sort of last-day-of-school farewell tour. From his desk he pulls a burned hot dog and other items that featured in past episodes, says goodbye to Song Lee and other classmates, and even (for the first time ever) leads Doug and readers into his house and memento-strewn room for further reminiscing. Of course, Harry isn’t as blasé about the move as he pretends, and eyes aren’t exactly dry when he departs. But hardly is he out of sight before Doug is meeting Mohammad, a new neighbor from Syria who (along with further diversifying a cast that began as mostly white but has become increasingly multiethnic over the years) will also be starting fourth grade at summer’s end, and planning a written account of his “horrible” buddy’s exploits. Finished illustrations not seen.

A fitting farewell, still funny, acute, and positive in its view of human nature even in its 37th episode. (Fiction. 7-9)

Pub Date: Nov. 27, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-451-47963-1

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Sept. 17, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2018

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TEA WITH MILK

In describing how his parents met, Say continues to explore the ways that differing cultures can harmonize; raised near San Francisco and known as May everywhere except at home, where she is Masako, the child who will grow up to be Say’s mother becomes a misfit when her family moves back to Japan. Rebelling against attempts to force her into the mold of a traditional Japanese woman, she leaves for Osaka, finds work as a department store translator, and meets Joseph, a Chinese businessman who not only speaks English, but prefers tea with milk and sugar, and persuades her that “home isn’t a place or a building that’s ready-made or waiting for you, in America or anywhere else.” Painted with characteristic control and restraint, Say’s illustrations, largely portraits, begin with a sepia view of a sullen child in a kimono, gradually take on distinct, subdued color, and end with a formal shot of the smiling young couple in Western dress. A stately cousin to Ina R. Friedman’s How My Parents Learned To Eat (1984), also illustrated by Say. (Picture book. 7-9)

Pub Date: April 1, 1999

ISBN: 0-395-90495-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1999

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