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APRIL FOOL, PHYLLIS! by Susanna Leonard Hill


by Susanna Leonard Hill & illustrated by Jeffrey Ebbeler

Age Range: 5 - 8

Pub Date: April 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-8234-2270-8
Publisher: Holiday House

It's evident some things run in the family for the legendary Punxsutawney Phil's niece Phyllis. The little groundhog only needs one sniff of the morning air to realize something’s amiss the day of the Spring Treasure Hunt. Though it is the first of April, Phyllis earnestly warns everyone of the impending blizzard. Her cries fall on deaf ears as the suspicious rodents turn pranksters. Phil Junior sticks his paws in ice to replicate winter’s grueling chill, and Pete throws confetti in the air to resemble snowflakes. Poor Phyllis initially believes their pranks. Without heeding the young forecaster’s warnings, the groundhogs begin the hunt, with dramatic riddles showcasing each clue. When the celebration dissolves into a wintry mess, Phyllis both solves the mystery and guides her group home through the blustery wind. References to the "treasure" repeatedly shine in the home’s interior. Warm acrylics, saturated in rich golden tones and creamy tans, offer a cozy look into this furry family’s den. Layered strokes enhance the textured fur of each stocky animal. Funny details abound: A glimpse of The Woodchuck Weekly newspaper reads: “Shadows! Why do they scare us?” An author’s note describes international April Fool traditions, though there’s no source notes provided. No fooling—here's a lighthearted romp that highlights an often overlooked holiday. (Picture book. 5-8)