Kirkus Reviews QR Code


by Sonya Sones and Bennett Tramer & illustrated by Chris Raschka

Age Range: 4 - 7

Pub Date: March 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-8037-3234-6
Publisher: Dial

Add Violet the brash, big-hearted swan and Winston the bumbling, sweet duck to the venerable list of picture-book odd couples—Laura Vaccaro Seeger’s Dog and Bear, James Marshall’s George and Martha or even the boys in Raschka’s Yo! Yes? (1993). The book’s three stories, equally suitable for beginning readers or for reading aloud, show the friends at turns helping and exasperating one another, with the last piece sweetly cementing their special bond. After sabotaging Winston’s garage sale (“Oh you mean that haunted one?” Violet asks someone interested in a dollhouse), she explains, “I have too many fond memories…” Touched, Winston repels another customer by charging $2,000 for a conch shell. The accompanying illustration perfectly resolves the visual storytelling. While other spreads include multiple ink-and-watercolor illustrations of the bespectacled Winston and the ever-hatted Violet, this solitary, closing, verso-page close-up is held in a rounded, rosy background against the white of the page. The friends’ locked eyes speak of memories made and a future imagined, and the picture itself has the warmth of a hug from a friend. (Picture book. 4-7)