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GOODNESS GRACIOUS! by Phil Cummings

GOODNESS GRACIOUS!

By Phil Cummings (Author) , Craig Smith (Illustrator)

Age Range: 3 - 7

Pub Date: March 1st, 1992
ISBN: 0-531-05967-7
Publisher: Orchard

 ``Goodness gracious! Look at my faces! scary starey BOLD or hairy'' begins this exploration of a child's many imaginative guises. The faces that the red-haired moppet is seen pulling on the first page take shape on a group of characters who romp with her through the illustrations, each following her lead in a role adapted to suit possibilities introduced in the catchy verse. A witch, an owl, and a pirate are joined by a dapper dog with a palette and brush, a sinuous cat, and even a flamboyant mandrill as the brash kid gleefully calls attention to herself (``North and south, look at my mouth! crabby pouty dribbly SHOUTY''), cavorting as she flourishes her legs (``short long bristly strong'') and gathering for a final portrait (``look at meee...eeee! TA-DAH!''). The freestyle illustrations are as full of playful energy as the exuberant showoff, soaring across the airy white space like new ideas on a fresh page. A delightfully creative expansion of a truly childlike activity, this should inspire young readers to make up more rhymes in the same pattern- -and perhaps to ``illustrate'' them with dramatic play. (Picture book. 3-7)