Little girls who are willing to work a bit for their understanding are likely to enjoy this wonderfully illustrated story...

READ REVIEW

She Yelled. I Screamed…She Pulled my Hair!

AN UNFAIRY TALE

In rhymed couplets, this debut book displays the challenges of sharing with a little sister.

Narrated by Phoebe—who has a sister, Audrey—this first story in a planned series begins in summer, when heat is making the girls so irritable that they are no longer kind to each other. Every time Phoebe asks Audrey to share their teapot, Audrey yells, Phoebe screams, and Audrey pulls Phoebe’s hair. Soon, Phoebe grabs and then throws the teapot, hitting Audrey’s foot. Without saying sorry, Phoebe heads for the shade of a tree and voices aloud her wish for Audrey to share. Immediately, a winged lady appears and reveals a sharing spell that involves giving Audrey leaves from a magical tree, coupled with kisses. Phoebe expects everything to be easy now that she has a magic spell, but it takes perseverance—as well as magic, a whole lot of leaves and kisses, and a change of seasons—for the sisters to finally get along. The text doubles as a playground for graphical elements by Leshay and James Renald: The word “burn” is on fire, while “shake” imitates quivering. The impressive black-and-white photographs invite deeper attention, but they can sometimes feel separate from the story. For example, depending on mood and angle, Audrey looks so different that young readers may find it difficult to figure out whom to follow. At times, the text is also confusing, as when Audrey rather randomly tells a stuffed bunny it can’t have a car—“No car for Woo Wabbit!” Still, as part of a read-along, the uncommonly artful photos plot a refreshing path toward a heartfelt message.

Little girls who are willing to work a bit for their understanding are likely to enjoy this wonderfully illustrated story with its successful treatment of text as graphics and some fresh ideas about sharing.

Pub Date: N/A

ISBN: 978-0-9899988-3-3

Page Count: -

Publisher: Again Again Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 3, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2015

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CINDERELLA

This companion piece to the other fairy tales Marcia Brown has interpreted (see Puss In Boots, 1952, p. 548 and others) has the smoothness of a good translation and a unique charm to her feathery light pictures. The pictures have been done in sunset colors and the spreads on each page as they illustrate the story have the cumulative effect of soft cloud banks. Gentle.

Pub Date: June 15, 1954

ISBN: 0684126761

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Scribner

Review Posted Online: Oct. 26, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1954

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THE LORAX

The greening of Dr. Seuss, in an ecology fable with an obvious message but a savingly silly style. In the desolate land of the Lifted Lorax, an aged creature called the Once-ler tells a young visitor how he arrived long ago in the then glorious country and began manufacturing anomalous objects called Thneeds from "the bright-colored tufts of the Truffula Trees." Despite protests from the Lorax, a native "who speaks for the trees," he continues to chop down Truffulas until he drives away the Brown Bar-ba-loots who had fed on the Tuffula fruit, the Swomee-Swans who can't sing a note for the smogulous smoke, and the Humming-Fish who had hummed in the pond now glumped up with Gluppity-Glupp. As for the Once-let, "1 went right on biggering, selling more Thneeds./ And I biggered my money, which everyone needs" — until the last Truffula falls. But one seed is left, and the Once-let hands it to his listener, with a message from the Lorax: "UNLESS someone like you/ cares a whole awful lot,/ nothing is going to get better./ It's not." The spontaneous madness of the old Dr. Seuss is absent here, but so is the boredom he often induced (in parents, anyway) with one ridiculous invention after another. And if the Once-let doesn't match the Grinch for sheer irresistible cussedness, he is stealing a lot more than Christmas and his story just might induce a generation of six-year-olds to care a whole lot.

Pub Date: Aug. 12, 1971

ISBN: 0394823370

Page Count: 72

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Oct. 19, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1971

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