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GEORGE HOGGLESBERRY, GRADE SCHOOL ALIEN by Sarah Wilson

GEORGE HOGGLESBERRY, GRADE SCHOOL ALIEN

By Sarah Wilson (Author) , Chad Cameron (Illustrator)

Age Range: 7 - 9

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 1-58246-063-9
Publisher: Tricycle

This “first day at a new school” tale doesn’t ring true. Newly arrived from Frollop II, blue-skinned George tapes a nose to his face in an effort to look more like his human classmates—but as he has persistent problems telling up from down, or keeping himself from turning into a tomato, he’s convinced everyone’s laughing up their sleeves. “They weren’t,” Wilson earnestly avers, even making George the recipient of reassuring peer hugs and kisses—but his cluelessness is so exaggerated that readers are far more likely to ridicule him than sympathize. His parents only make it worse; on the evening that George triumphs as the Moon in the school play, his mother comes with teabags dangling from her ears beneath toothbrush hair sticks, and his father glues on a lettuce leaf mustache. They draw barely a glance from others in the audience. Many stories that celebrate physical or cultural differences also teach tolerance, from Rosemary Wells’s conventional Yoko (1998) to Sam Swopes’s circus-like Araboolies of Liberty Street, illustrated by Barry Root (1989). This is so over-the-top that it may well make such differences easier to deride. (Picture book. 7-9)