Tony Baloney doesn’t have to worry about sibling problems today—it’s the first day of school. But will he be better able to behave there?
Four chapters take children transitioning between early readers and longer books through Tony’s day, from getting ready and learning the teacher’s rules through the school day and back home again. As those familiar with Tony would suspect, the little penguin has some trouble with the rules (Tony Baloney, 2011). He calls out in class, pushes a friend too enthusiastically during a game of tag and excitedly runs to a seat at lunch. Finally, he interrupts his teacher’s group time for something not on the list of “B Emergencies” (bathroom, bandage, belly-upset). But the teacher and class quickly concur that “Bob is buried beneath the blocks!” is indeed a valid B Emergency, and they expand the list (quite humorously). While Tony doesn’t get to be Line Leader on the first day as his big sister did, he is crowned a Friendship Ambassador for helping the buried Bob. As in his first outing, Tony’s superego, aka Dandelion, his stuffed bird, gives him sage advice and helps him process the whole experience. Fotheringham’s digital illustrations pop with bold colors. The penguins’ droll facial expressions and body language will certainly be familiar to young readers
This is likely to soothe the fears of those similarly nervous about their ability to follow the school rules. (Early reader. 5-7)