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MIMI SAYS NO by Yih-Fen Chou


by Yih-Fen Chou & illustrated by Chih-Yuan Chen

Age Range: 2 - 4

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-9787550-7-2
Publisher: Heryin

In this twinned salute to toddler traditions, one entry swims and the other flounders. Mimi is a young animal drawn with black cartoony outlines, energetic expressions and postures of busy motion. Not surprisingly, her chorus is a favorite of two-year-olds everywhere. “ ‘Mommy is going to dress you now, ok?’ ‘NO I’ll dress myself!’ ” She wrestles, Olivia-like, with her purple jumper, achieving eight positions in a single spread. The pattern stays steady--one offer from Mommy, one NO, one chaotic upshot--until the gently silly twist at the end, when Mimi screamingly refuses a hug because she wants to bestow the hug herself. Its companion title, Mimi Loves to Mimic (ISBN: 978-0-9787550-8-9), tries to give the same treatment to imitative behavior, but the structure falters. At first, Mimi copies an adult action to the refrain “just like Mommy” or “just like Daddy,” but then the text wanders away from that strict format, losing its magnetism. Add this title to large collections; leave Mimi Loves to Mimic behind and hunt up Frank Asch’s classic Just Like Daddy (1981) instead. (Picture book. 2-4)