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by Bethany Roberts & illustrated by Marsha Winborn

Pub Date: April 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-525-47291-6
Publisher: Dutton

In this second entry in the May Belle and Ogre easy reader series, May Belle continues to try to civilize her friend, a furry beast without much sense of how the world works. In three short chapters, May Belle teaches Ogre how to work on a garden together, how to read a few words and how to find outdoor activities when Ogre is bored. The middle section, “J-A-M for Two,” is particularly well written as it describes Ogre learning to read in a hilarious (but also touching) way. Ogre is continuously funny as he tries to eat everything in sight, restrained by May Belle’s patient guidance. There are some repeated silly refrains of “doo-wacka-doo,” nonsense words that stick out like Ogre’s spiky gray fur, but overall the text sports a droll sense of humor rarely found in easy readers. Winborn’s amusing paintings add to the humorous mix with matching furry eyebrows for both monster and little girl. (Easy reader. 6-8)