FROG'S BEST FRIEND by Marion Dane Bauer


Age Range: 6 - 8
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Bauer and Hearn (Turtle Dreams, 1997) pair up for their second easy reader about a group of forest friends, this time with the addition of an overbearing frog that wants to claim Turtle as his best friend while excluding the other animals. Turtle tries her best to remain friends with everyone, artfully avoiding Frog's exclusionary tactics. When a bear cub arrives on the scene, all of Turtle's friends play a part in rescuing her, and she wisely concludes, "A turtle can't have too many best friends." Bauer skillfully works quite a bit of characterization and humor into her plot, which offers some spot-on comments about friendship applicable to the intended first- and second-grade audience. The text, written at the 2.4 grade level, is set in a large typeface with generous white space, and the story is logically divided into short chapters with a variety of illustration sizes and placements just right for this level. Hearn's appealing animal characters add considerable charm to the whole, with a bossy frog, earnest turtle, inquisitive bear cub, and furious mother bear arriving on her hind legs to claim her baby. Though Frog and Turtle don't rise to the stellar level of the Frog and Toad series, more of their group's adventures would be welcome additions to the easy reader shelves. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: March 15th, 2002
ISBN: 0-8234-1501-5
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Holiday House